A packed day at the Stoa tomorrow!
Askhole: Breaking Social Boundaries w/ Aella. May 22nd @ 6:00 PM ET. 60 mins. RSVP here.
The Dark Stoa w/ Pat Ryan. Every Friday @ 8:30 PM ET. RSVP here.
May 21, 2020
I am getting mildly annoyed at the Letter platform, especially its scrolling feature. I have 60 entries here now, and I am concerned that it will not be able to support 60 more. These days I desire to write until the truth bleeds out, and I want a platform that can bleed with me. I do not want to switch platforms, because I love the humane tech mission of Letter, and more importantly, I love the people behind it.
That being said, this annoyance is stemming from caring about the experience of other people reading these, which is a very brief care, because I am not caring that much about the experience of other people these days. Well, that is not true. I am deeply caring when I sense it is wise to care, but I am not caring about making things easy, consumable, or pleasant for others. Besides, the idea here is that I am writing to myself, not you.
People have been complaining about the Stoa website being difficult to navigate, or about how some of the events lack good descriptions, or how I disabled comments on all the YouTube videos. Go ahead, complain. I have a delightful zero fucks given attitude these days. Stoicism is not here to make things easy for you.
Now if there were genuine accommodation needs or concerns, I would take those seriously. I have no desire to be or appear to be an ableist, but most complaints I have received were from those who are pampered and spoiled by instant gratification from this microwave society. If you are deeply annoyed by the inconvenience of “bad” customer service, then you can go away.
Nassim Nicholas Taleb, the great triggerer of Intellectual Yet Idiots, is coming to mind. Some say he is arrogant, or an asshole, but I do not see that at all. I see a man whose Stoic game is incredibly advanced. He not only practices Stoicism, but he graciously gives others the opportunity to practice their Stoicism as well. His ostensible asshole game would be better viewed as a move to help others practice, so they have a chance at becoming winners in virtue.
A lot of the stuff Taleb writes is above my pay grade, but I know a Stoic when I see one. Out of all of the people who write about Stoicism, he is the one who resonates with me the most. Maybe it is because we are both Orthodox Christians, or maybe we both like to deadlift, but I sense a great philia with Taleb, even though we've never spoken before.
There is a certain thumos about him, and a wise intolerance for bullshit, especially in its embodied form. The Modern(ist) Stoicism movement, who I previously suggested are New Atheists LARPing as Stoics, are not fans of Taleb, and Taleb is not a fan of them.
Now I am into memetic mediation, and I like to maintain good terms with everyone if I can, but if I had to choose what Stoicism I belong to, my heart belongs to a Talebian Stoicism. Appearing like an asshole is different than being an asshole, and sometimes appearing like an asshole, especially to those who are incapable of smelling their own bullshit, is a very wise move.
Now, Taleb has more license than most, because he is a legitimate genius, but his Stoic game is not that hard to learn. Just follow the Stoic algorithm and fall in love with virtue. If you do this, you will not be afraid of appearing like an asshole, nor would you get triggered by those who appear to be one.
If you do get triggered, and worse, are blinded to your own triggering and then double-down on your ego by projecting your ego onto others, then yeah, you are a loser in virtue. Stoics are not losers in virtue. We may not always be winners, but at least we are trying to win, and you need to risk appearing like an asshole in order to win.
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