Being Angry Is A Waste Of Precious Time

Ricardo Guaderrama Caraveo
4 min readJun 14, 2022
Photo by mana5280 on Unsplash

“An objection: ‘Are you telling me that a good man doesn’t become angry if he sees his father being murdered, his mother raped?’ No, he will not become angry, but he’ll be their champion and defender. Why are you afraid that a proper sense of devotion won’t goad him sufficiently, even without anger? … A good man will follow up his obligations undisturbed and undeterred, and in doing the things worthy of a good man he will do nothing unworthy of a man.” — Seneca, On Anger

I believe this quote to be one of the hardest from Stoicism.

Imagining your father being killed or your mother raped, and still be calm? Come on!

But Seneca never says anything about doing nothing, to the contrary, he says that in such a situation you’ll be their champion and defender, but you will do so while being undisturbed and undeterred. If you think about it, you’d even do a better job. I imagine a Samurai, calm and deep as the ocean, you can’t fight well if you have a war going on inside yourself.

According to Seneca, what the Stoics seek to discover is: how the mind may always pursue a steady and favorable course, may be well-disposed towards itself, and may view its conditions with joy.

He also claims that someone who practices stoicism: must, whether he wills or not, necessarily be attended by