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Emotion and Peace of MindFrom Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation$
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Richard Sorabji

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199256600

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199256600.001.0001

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The Role Of Analytic Philosophy In Stoic Cognitive Therapy

The Role Of Analytic Philosophy In Stoic Cognitive Therapy

(p.159) 11 The Role Of Analytic Philosophy In Stoic Cognitive Therapy
Emotion and Peace of Mind

Richard Sorabji (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The Stoics invented cognitive therapy, in which: I attack my judgement that the situation is bad — e.g., by recalling that I am not the only one, or that things are only unexpected not bad, or by redescription of the situation. I attack my judgement that mourning or revenge is appropriate by reminding myself it makes me neglect the living, or that I have often behaved provocatively myself. But where, as Bernard Williams asked, does philosophical analysis come in? For example by showing that rethinking can remove emotion since it depends on judgement, by showing what two judgements are open to attack, and by telling us to avoid William James' phenomenon of judging, ‘I am crying, so I must have been maltreated’. The relevance of time, self, and the disutility of some emotion also needs to be considered. The Stoic connexion between philosophy and therapy is, rightly, seamless.

Keywords:   redescription, unexpected, philosophical analysis, William James, philosophy, therapy, Bernard Williams

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