The Tao Of Seneca – Practical Letters from a Stoic Master
The Tao Of Seneca is a version of Seneca The Younger’s Moral Letters to Lucilius – a distillation of his lessons learned which he sent to his friend.
Free to download, the collection of three PDF volumes has been produced by Tim Ferriss, who is a huge fan of Seneca’s teachings and applies the principles of Stoicism to his daily life.
They are available for download from Tim’s blog at the following locations –
“I’m giving away The Tao of Seneca in the hopes that it changes your life, and I promise you that it can.”Tim Ferriss.
How To Use
Over the three volumes there is plenty of reading, but rather than being overwhelming it’s quite easy to dip in an out.
In fact, Tim encourages that approach. Here are his instructions on how to make the best use of some of Stoicism’s most enduring writings:
So, where to start?
There are many great minds in the Stoic pantheon, including Marcus Aurelius, Epictetus, and Cato. For me, though, Seneca stands out as easy to read, memorable, and surprisingly practical.
He covers specifics ranging from handling slander and backstabbing, to fasting, exercise, wealth, and death. His letters read like a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure book for handling the obstacles life deals you.
I suggest you approach this book is the way I approached it: make Seneca part of your daily routine.
Set aside 10–15 minutes a day and read one letter. Whether over coffee in the morning, right before bed, or somewhere in between, digest one letter. Do this for two weeks and it will change you.
Feel free to bounce around and skip liberally. This is your book, meant to be customised. Three of my favourites might help you get started: Letter 13 On Groundless Fears (pg 66), Letter 18 On Festivals and Fasting (pg 90), and Letter 20 On Practising What You Preach (pg 100), which is also hilarious.