Stoicism, First Things First, The Power Of the Gods

Ricardo Guaderrama Caraveo
4 min readOct 19, 2022
Photo by Julian Lozano on Unsplash

The first principle of practical Stoicism is this: we don’t react to events; we react to our judgments about them, and the judgments are up to us. — Ward Farnsworth

All right, it’s time to get to the Stoic basics, again, cause they are so easy, so painfully easy, forgotten.

Things happen in life. Some are good, and some are bad, but are they? Are they really? Are they good or bad in an ultimate way? Is the rain bad? Or is it bad for you? Because you wanted to go out with your friends? Or that girl from Bumble? What if someone in your city was hoping for some rain to shower his Begonia flower? Rain’s good for him.

I get it, that is the classical silly example of the subjectivity of good and bad. But the Stoics were getting somewhere with this teaching.

There is an amazing video by Jocko Willing, the US Marine. In the video, he claims that for every situation, you can always say the word “good”.

You didn’t get into that college you wanted? Good, more freedom to live wherever you want. You can’t cook dinner because you ran out of gas? Good, you can practice fasting. This idea can even be comical. You lost your legs, good! No more leg days!

Obviously a joke, but, you can see where this is going. You ARE able to say good, whenever…