“Eat like a human being, drink like a human being, dress up, marry, have children, get politically active — suffer abuse, bear with a headstrong brother, father, son neighbor, or companion. Show us these things so we can see that you truly have learned from the philosophers.EPICTETUS, DISCOURSES, 3.21.5-6
Yes it’s important to study philosophy. You wouldn’t be here and reading about The Daily Stoic with me if you didn’t already know that. But eventually you need to stop studying and go out into the real world. Basically: don’t forget to live!
Discussing concepts and hypotheticals is all well and dandy, but eventually you need to put it into action. That’s how you test to see if you’ve been able to successfully absorb any of the things you’ve learned — by living your life, as messy as it may be. That’s what philosophy is for… the study of knowledge for the sake of bettering your life. So get out there and freaking live!
It’s been said that stoicism is a blueprint for life. Eventually you need to get into the real world and show what you’ve learned — demonstrate the knowledge and understanding that you’ve gained, as you apply it to your everyday routine.
As Ryan Holiday put it in today’s chapter: “It is experience that brings meaning to the words.” So study, sure, but don’t forget to live.