I’m a practising (and still needing much practice) Stoic. The joyful philosopher kind, not the indifferent interpretation one most often thinks of.
This means, among other things, that I accept the moment as it presents itself and I’m not controlled by a desire for pleasure or a fear of pain. Emotion is experienced but rational thinking and discipline allow the stoic to put emotion to good use rather than be submitted to its whim. Which also means, not infrequently, that I scratch my head trying to figure out what the rational and ‘right’ thing to do is in a situation, if I take a dispassionate view of the situation.
It’s easy for me to say why a practising Stoic is misunderstood, when I write the above paragraph, but it doesn’t mean the little things don’t matter. Quite the opposite.
Giving or receiving a hug from my beloved is a simple source of joy; I really appreciate her close company. Feeling a warm breeze while walking the dog is a joy; a sensory pleasure one can fully appreciate in the moment. Feeling secure enough on the roller coaster that is life, my mind and heart are open to excitement without fear of the fall.
The little details, so often missed in rushes of unadulterated pleasure, I can capture without the emotional buffeting experienced by many around me.