Stoicism and Objectivism on What (and How) to Value by Aaron Smith

The ancient Stoics held that we suffer in life because we value the wrong things and/or have the wrong attitude toward our values. If we want to live the good life, they held, we need to radically change the way we value. Given the growing popularity of Stoicism in the culture today, it’s worth examining what this reorientation to values amounts to, and what it would mean to adopt it. This talk will explore both ancient and modern Stoic approaches to values from the perspective of Objectivism’s radically different view.

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Recorded July 4, 2023, at OCON in Miami, Florida.

Stoicism vs Objectivism: What Is (and Is Not) Under Our Control? by Aaron Smith

Objectivism holds that it’s vital to understand what things are under our control and what are not. To avoid passive resignation toward what we can change and futile rebellion against the unchangeable, we need to internalize the right perspective on this issue. This talk contrasts the Objectivist perspective on this question with that of Stoicism. Both philosophies regard the issue as of central practical importance to a good life, but they differ in fundamental ways that are instructive to explore.

Recorded live as part of The Objectivist Conference on August 31, 2021.