Friday, October 31, 2014

Back From The Field...For The Weekend. Quick Discussion on Stoicism.

That's right, after spending 10 days in the field, sleeping under the stars in the New Mexican desert, I have the weekend off, then bright and early (should I say pitch black and chilly?) Monday morning it is right back out to another patch of New Mexican desert for more field time. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to practice training my trigger finger, more like my trigger thumb, flipping a switch on a radio headset in the Troop's Command Post.

The biggest hardship is not the port-jons, or the bad food (organic polymer material called "eggs"?), sleeping on cots in the open, or the lack of sleep. It is not having signal for the cellphone in order to keep in touch with family, or check email, or worse yet, no news.

A lot has happened in the world, and I will not recap it all.

I was pleased to see a growing spurt of discussion on the topic of Stoicism. The Defensive Training Group had an excellent article here.

I had heard of Stoicism long ago. but had never read deep into it. A couple of years ago I ran across a presentation (here) the Vice Admiral James B. Stockdale gave in 1995. I keep it in a binder with another article from 1979 entitled The Farmer at War, which is about the farmers in then Rhodesia trying to keep what they had built. I have always thought it was an interesting combination by accident.

As with any word in language, meanings and definitions will flex and vary, and being "Stoic" is no different. I may not agree with all of the philosophy of Stoicism, but what I do agree with I can add to my personal code of life.


  1. Thanks for the presentation by Vice Admiral Stockton. Also Stoicism reminds me of some of the writings of the saints.