These, Holiday points out, are the same as the three disciplines being offered in this year-long exploration of Stoicism: perception, action, and will.
I think I get where both Holiday and the venerable Marcus are coming from: after everything is chipped away; all the postulation, discussion, dialogue, arguments, and sermons… we see that the things that are actually needed to make our way through life in excellence are, in reality, very few.
I meditate in various and sundry places depending on my mood and what’s available. Today I found myself in, what we at The Prairie Home call the “music room”. Anyway, while looking around the adjoining rooms in our home/church, I was filled with the panorama of text after text after text… over 1100 books that, between Rev. Missy and I, have all been read. Millions of words. Thousands of thoughts and ideas. Hundreds of authors arguing one point or another…
… all for what?
How many of these books teach about good judgement and right-perspective?
How many teach about right-action, and putting down the books to get out into the world?
How many teach about expressing gratitude in our lives?
Answer: it doesn’t matter.
Be it a thousand or one, books, websites, teachers, gurus, priests, shamans, wizards, or mystics can teach and guide until they all wither to dust… and unless we DECIDE TO “DO”, none of their wisdom and guidance matter. Why wouldn’t we decide to act after receiving such guidance?
AND even if we decided to “do”, what does our doing look like that would make it more complicated than the original three guideposts?
Ego, y’all… the answer is: ego.
BONUS BITS: For those who have heard my teaching on the 3 Ortho(s) before, let me leave you with this:
Perception = Right-Knowing = Orthodoxy
Action = Right-Doing = Orthopraxy
Will = Right-Feeling = Orthopathy
One alone is foolish and self-deluding, and monolithic.
Two, while stronger than one, eventually become oppositional and dualistic.
We need ALL THREE to be complete beings.
(See y’all tomorrow)