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Emotion and Peace of Mind – From Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Emotion and Peace of Mind: From Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation

Richard Sorabji


The Stoics (Chrysippus, Seneca, Epictetus) tell us how to get rid of unwanted emotions by re-evaluating situations (cognitive therapy). In their view, an emotion is a pair of value judgements that harm or benefit if at hand, and that it is appropriate to react. Bodily and mental shocks (e.g., crying) are not part of the emotion. One Stoic, Posidonius, protested that such judgements are neither necessary nor sufficient for emotion, not necessary, for example, for emotion produced by melody, or in animals. Seneca replied that what is produced by music and the arts, or in animals, is only prelimi ... More

Keywords: Aristotle, Chrysippus, Posidonius, Galen, Augustine, first movements, judgement, apatheia, Seneca and Epictetus

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2002 Print ISBN-13: 9780199256600
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2007 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199256600.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Richard Sorabji, author
Wolfson College, Oxford
Author Webpage

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Part I Emotions As Judgements Versus Irrational Forces

5 The Arts

Aristotle, Philodemus, and the Stoics

Part II Value Of the Emotions, Cognitive Therapy, and the Role Of Philosophy

Part III Emotional Conflict and Structure Of the Mind

Part IV From Stoic Agitations To Christian Temptations