A philosophy webcomic about the inevitable anguish of living a brief life in an absurd world. Also Jokes

Modern Stoic Philosophy

The Ancient Stoics all more or less agreed that you should live a life devoted to virtue and civic duty, and yet mysteriously this part of it seems to get cut out of 98% of Stoic Gurus today.

The Philosophy of Humor

Epictetus: "What is the basis of comedy? What is laughter? What is joking?"

Epictetus: "Nothing but scorn for the weak. We laugh because we see ourselves as better. Laughter is a vice, a man of proper stoic virtue does not take part in humor."

Epictetus: "Laughter is a mistake."

Immanuel Kant: "Look, I agree with you, Epictetus, that humor is a mistake and teaches us nothing, but it isn't just scorn. When, after building up an expectation, we hear a surprising twist, it jostles nerves at random which produces a pleasing laugh."

Kant: "I bet i can make you laugh merely by giving an absurd tale which is contrary to your understanding, with no scorn involved."

Epictetus: "Impossible. I have never laughed and i never will."

Kant: "A merchant returning from India to Europe with all his wealth in merchandise...was forced to throw it overboard in a heavy storm and grieved the loss so much that his wig turned gray the same night."

Epictetus: "That is not funny and i will not laugh at it."

Saint Thomas Aquinas: "No, you have it wrong too Kant! Laughter is merely play. We joke to test each other's wit and bring joy, thus it is a virtue, not a vice. For example, say a landlord says the following to a tenant late on their rent:"
Aquinas: "'We appreciate your business, but, please, give us a break. Your account is overdue ten months. That means we’ve carried you longer than your mother did!'"

Aquinas: "He does so to lighten the mood and show a connection between two things, how is that a vice?"
Epictetus: "Because, Aquinas, instead of playful banter he should have used the opportunity to teach a lesson in stoic virtue."

Sigmund Freud: "No, Kant was closer, but the nerves aren't jostled “at random”, it is our pent up deep repressions that are released in the form of laughter. The human mind represses much and saying outloud these repressions causes a release."

Epictetus: "I have no “repressions”, Freud, I live according to nature."
Freud: "Is that so? Let's see if the following joke makes you laugh, shall we?"

Freud: "Penis."

Epictetus: "That's it?"
Freud: "Wait for the punchline."
Epictetus: "Okay...what's the punchline?"

Freud: "More penis."

Freud, loudly: "Peeeeeeeenis!"

Description: Everyone starts laughing.

Epictetus: "HaHahahaHa. Good one Freud. Penis. You got me, that was pretty funny."
What is comedy? It is saying the word "penis" very loudly.

Coach Epictetus

"Good job showing your Stoic virtue, but caring about the sport so much that you sacrifice your body and mind to try to win, but then don't care enough to be upset when things go wrong."

Stoic Advice

Person: "Are you the great philosopher, Epictetus?"
Epictetus: "None other."
Person: "I come to you in dire need of advice, please, guide me with you wisdom?"
Epictetus: "Very well, what is your dilemma?"

Person: "I have discovered my wife has been unfaithful! My honor dictates that i must duel him, and bring my wife before the magistrate."

Person: "But she claims she loves me still, and only went to him because of my neglect. She says if i return to her we can live as before, and how i wish it could be so! But i have sworn an oath to uphold the law."

Person: "How can i choose between my honor and my love? Between justice and forgiveness? which form of anguish is preferable, guilt or shame?"

Epictetus: "have you tried just not worrying about it haha."
Person: "What?!"

Epictetus: "Yeah, just like...don't let it effect you. Really it is your reaction to these events that is causing you suffering, when you think about it."

Person: "That's your “wise advice”?! To not care about it?"
Epictetus: "Yeah, just be like “oh well, doesn't bother me.”"

Description: he stabs Epictetus.
Epictetus: "I am not bothered by this turn of events."
This is fine.

Stoic Apathy

Epictetus: "In order to become a Stoic Master, you must learn the Stoic art of apathy - the art of not caring."
Student: "I want to be a Stoic Master."
Epictetus: "Then show me how apathetic you are, tell me what you don't care about."

Student: "I don't care if...the weather is nice or not."
Epictetus: "More apathy!"
Student: "I don't care if...people like me or not."
Epictetus: "More! Care less!"

Student: "I don't care if...terrible pain is inflicted on me."
Epictetus: "Good. More apathy!"

Student: "I don't care if my family lives or dies, and all that i love perishes from the earth."
Epictetus: "Yes! Let the apathy flow through you."

Student: "Wait a minute, yes i do. I care a ton about my family, and would be devastated if they died, and i'm perfectly okay with that."

Epictetus: "Bah! You'll never become a Stoic Master if you are so attached to such transient things."

Student: "Well...then i guess i don't care about becoming a Stoic Master."

Epictetus, gasping: "Oh my god...he is the one!"
According to the Stoic doctrine of Apatheia, one should not be bothered by the fact that someone carelessly translates "apatheia" as "apathy", leading to misleading and inaccurate representations for comedic effect.

Epictetus Has a Bad Day

One day I'm going to intentionally make a comic that misinterprets Stoicism so bad that it'll piss off all the Stoicism nerds, and I'll be like "ha, got you!"

Stoic Relationship Advice

"A perfect relationship will be achieved when neither of you cares in the slightest if the other dies."

Stoicism Bootcamp

"Also, buy my new book 'How to be Totally Stoic in 21 Easy Steps'" "What the hell, all the pages are blank, I want my money back!" "Ah, you can't change the book though, you can only change your reaction to the book. Also, no refunds."

The Next Great Stoic Competition

The reality TV phase of Marcus Aurelius's life was mostly edited out of Meditations.

Epictetus was a hardass professor

Yeah, no one ever passed his class and all his students hated him, but Epictetus didn't really let it bother him.

Sorry! And the Nature of Suffering

It is better to not even begin playing the game, as it will only lead to suffering and misery. Plus, last time I played Hegel ended up winning, even though he totally didn't deserve it.
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