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Letters from a Stoic 40 – Summary and Key Takeaways

                In letters from a stoic 40, Seneca describes how a philosopher discourse should be. Lucilius met a philosopher named Serapio in his residence. Seneca said not to put so much value on the said philosopher’s discourses which seemed to be done at a fast pace and full of rhetorical words but yet out of order. 

         Seneca argues that discourse should be composed (slow pace) and what matters most is the content and not the artistry at which it is delivered. “So this speed of speech has no control over itself, nor is it seemly for philosophy; since philosophy should carefully place her words, not fling them out, and should proceed step by step.” He, later on, added that this kind of unrestrained style of speech might work for the Greek but Romans prefers the more controlled type. “In a Greek you can put up with the unrestrained style, but we Romans, even when writing, have become accustomed to separate our words”. So as a closing statement in the letter told Lucilius that he should practice slow speech in his discourses.

*****   Letters from a Stoic Key Takeaways is a collection of short key takeaways from the letters sent by Seneca to Lucilius. Read each letter’s key takeways here .

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