What is Stoicism?

Stoicism is a philosophy of life

Stoicism is a philosophy grounded in the belief that virtue, or excellence of character, is the highest good in life. The happiness valued in Stoicism is eudaimonia (you-dye-mo-NEE-ah), a Greek word meaning personal flourishing, wellbeing, or a life worth living. 

Eudaimonia may be unlocked when we practice the four Stoic virtues of wisdom, justice, temperance, and courage to guide our decisions. Rather than relying on things generally seen as forming the basis of happiness such as wealth, health, and status, Stoicism regards these things as having value when used wisely, but on their own unnecessary for happiness.

From a Stoic perspective, virtue is the striving toward excellence in the ethical realm, where we seek to resolve questions of human morality. Virtue are those things comprising the absolute highest good attainable in life, and therefore they are impossible to have in excess. Only by practicing a life of virtue can we person unlock personal flourishing, or eudaimonia (you-dye-mo-NEE-ah).