The Wild German Stoic

Guido Bellberg

Your weekly dose of Stoicism. Modern Stoicism for a good life. With a wild and German twist.

Courage and stoicism go hand in hand (#014)
Sep 2 2022
Courage and stoicism go hand in hand (#014)
Courage and stoicism go hand in hand (#14)Courage is not easyIt is very easy to be brave when it does not endanger ourselves - and this can also be an imaginary danger. On the other hand, it is difficult to show courage when one expects disadvantages as a result of this courage. The result: in my personal opinion, about 70% of people are rather cowardly and dishonest.Courage is a Stoic cardinal virtueNow, in Stoicism, courage has even become a cardinal virtue and is a quasi-obligation for a Stoic. Ideally, as a Stoic, you can't help but be bold.Courage paired with courtesy and modestyWhile we should try to always speak the truth, we have the opportunity to sugarcoat that truth with politeness. So should we, unless we want to offend everyone.Stoic frustrationIf you work hard on yourself and have already covered a few miles on your stoic journey, you will catch yourself from time to time not behaving 100% courageously in a situation. Or not virtuous enough. That can quickly lead to frustration, also because your own expectations are so high. We must not forget: we are not stoic sages, but normal people and people make mistakes. These mistakes allow us to grow and should motivate us. What does Marcus Aurelius have to say about courage? In the podcast itself, we look into an important quote...SupportEvery Friday I publish a new episode of THE WILD GERMAN STOIC. If you like what I'm doing you can support me here … ★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
Perfectionism and Stoicism (#008)
Jul 22 2022
Perfectionism and Stoicism (#008)
Perfectionism and Stoicism (#008)Is Perfectionism good or bad? Both.Perfectionism can be both a good thing and a bad thing. It is good because it encourages us to do our best and allows us to surpass ourselves. It is bad thing because - if carried out to an excessive extent - it can lead to procrastination and chronic dissatisfaction. Perfectionism is often rooted in childhood trauma, such as the feeling of having to be perfect in order to be liked. Another reason can be, for example, internal fear and the desire for maximum control.Perfectionism and stoicism - what is the danger?Those on a stoic journey will sooner or later face issues of resilience and the dichotomy of control. The comparison with an archer was and is often used by Stoics: the archer can do everything in his power to practice sufficiently and draw the bow correctly, but whether his arrow ultimately hits its target is beyond his actual control. The question that advanced Stoics often ask themselves is: how do I know that I have given everything? How can I be sure that I have reached my full potential and not given up prematurely? One listener asked the question this way: Is there a control mechanism in Stoicism that prevents me from falling into perfectionism?My answer: no, you have to be this control mechanism yourself. This is especially difficult if you are either an extreme perfectionist or an extreme slacker. The bad news: these people are rarely capable of such self-control. The good news is that most people who are interested in Stoicism and this podcast tend to fall into a different category: people who strive for self-improvement and sometimes find themselves on the verge of perfectionism. The best news: there are some clear warnings and many good tips that can be used effectively to counteract the danger of becoming too perfectionistic and unhappy. More on that in the podcast itself, thanks for listening.SupportEvery Friday I publish a new episode of THE WILD GERMAN STOIC. If you like what I'm doing you can support me here … ★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★
Into the wild – Stoics, Romantics, Nature (#007)
Jul 15 2022
Into the wild – Stoics, Romantics, Nature (#007)
Into the wild (#7)The movie "Into the wild" is not stoicWe have to choose: do we want to follow romantic legends or a more stoic attitude to life? The concept of nature is often used in both, but not always understood in the same way.The film/book "Into the wild" can serve as an example of what I personally call a romantic legend or a romantic hero's journey. I'm referencing the Sean Penn film in this podcast.Romance as a way of life: failure is inevitable...In the romantic legend "Into the Wild", based on John Krakauer's book of the same name, which in turn is based on the (partially) true story of Chris McCandless, Emile Hirsch plays a young man who breaks away from society and seeks a free, self-determined life in the wilderness, in this case Alaska. So far so good.Now, there is definitely a danger that people on a Stoic journey who are dealing with the Stoic concept of nature might think that what the main character is doing here is somehow compatible with Stoicism. But it is not.Stoic reason instead of romantic dream worldsThe "hero" Chris ends up in an abandoned school bus on a trail in Alaska, probably starved to death or poisoned himself, we don't know for sure. In any case, his unreasonable pursuit of his personal dream country, Alaska, which bears only a limited resemblance to the real Alaska, has deadly consequences for him.With all sympathy for the real Chris, the whole thing seems almost like a suicide in little steps and in no way corresponds to the stoic ideal of nature, at least in my personal view of stoicism.SupportEvery Friday I publish a new episode of THE WILD GERMAN STOIC. If you like what I'm doing you can support me here … ★ Support this podcast on Patreon ★