A few recommendations by Figs in Winter for your reading pleasure
Marcus Aurelius and a daughter of his (perhaps) in today's NY Times:
I always appreciate your suggestions for reading.
Sparta: when I read Plato's Republic/Politeia, I thought he had modeled his ideal state on Sparta with the Helots corresponding to the producers and the Spartans to the guardians and their auxiliaries.
(having lost a war to the smaller and poorer Sparta, Athenians of Plato's age were in awe of the Spartan's just as badly as management consultants were in awe of Japanese in the 1980s).
Substack is my go-to reading in my break time. But it's great to get to read other platforms too. Like getting 2 for the price of 1. Thanks.
re. Philosophy for everyday life, I enjoyed your column. Epictetus taught us to be wary of philosophical technicians who could dissect arguments with ease yet couldn't put them into practise. Today that might sound something like "cool argument, now what are you going to do about it?" If someone doesn't live according to their beliefs - or at least try to - then they have none.
sometimes reading you, Massimo, is like listening to a friend over a cup of coffee (or tea). I really needed you today. thank you!
My pleasure Massimo.
Re FP article, spookily that direction was my first re Sparta. I remember years ago listening to hours of Kay Griggs 'revelations' around her husbands 'activities'. She described the model of US military's 'super-soldier/spy special agent/operative training ethos as that based on Spartan agoge principles (isolation, disorientation, deprivation and re-education/indoctrination). Seemed pretty akin to physical and psych abuse to me at the time....
Oh yes, your writing style is superb. How did I have the good fortune to find you and Donald Robertson?
I should have known you would capture the article in Foreign Policy. This article is so spot on.