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The Stoic Jew

Rabbi Matt Schneeweiss

My name is Rabbi Matt Schneeweiss. I am, first and foremost, an Orthodox Jew. My primary area of focus is the teachings of Shlomo ha'Melech (King Solomon) in Mishlei (Proverbs) and Koheles (Ecclesiastes). I also consider myself to be a student of the Stoic masters: Epictetus, Seneca, and Marcus Aurelius. Over the past two decades I have been exploring the relationship between Judaism and Stoicism - where they overlap, where they differ, and how they complement each other. This year I started a daily reading of Marcus Aurelius with an aim to explore these questions. I'll read a passage from Aurelius's Meditations and then muse (or meditate aloud) on my thoughts about what he said and what the Torah would have to say. As Seneca taught: "Each day acquire something that will fortify you against poverty, against death, indeed against other misfortunes as well; and after you have run over many thoughts, select one to be thoroughly digested that day" (Letter #2). If this podcast serves that purpose, then it will have been of value.

Recent Episodes

Animaniacs, Plucky Duck, and Premeditatio Malorum (Epictetus – Enchiridion 17,8)August 03, 2021 Episode artwork Their Cars Were Totaled and They Didn’t Even Know (Epictetus – Enchiridion 1)August 02, 2021 Episode artwork The Medallion ExperimentJuly 30, 2021 Episode artwork Shooting Yourself With the Second Arrow (Aurelius – Meditations 4:7-8)July 27, 2021 Episode artwork Holding a Dying Man in My Arms: a True Memento Mori (Aurelius – Meditations 2:11)July 25, 2021 Episode artwork The Obstacle is the Way Back to New York (Aurelius – Meditations 5:20)July 22, 2021 Episode artwork How I Accidentally Lived a Day to Its Fullest (Aurelius – Meditations 7:69; Seneca – Letter #101: On the Futility of Planning Ahead)July 20, 2021 Episode artwork A Stoic Perspective on Tishah b’Av (Seneca – Letter #18: On Festivals and Fasting)July 18, 2021 Episode artwork Happy Being Happy (Seneca: Consolation of Helvia 5)July 16, 2021 Episode artwork Turning a BAD 4-hour Sleep Into a GOOD 4-hour Sleep (Aurelius – Meditations 8:32)July 13, 2021 Episode artwork Body of Clay and Soul of Gold (Seneca - Letter #66: On Various Aspects of Virtue)July 12, 2021 Episode artwork The Gratitude Accountability Experiment (Aurelius – Meditations 9:6)July 08, 2021 Episode artwork My Stoic Injury and TSJ Summer Update (Epictetus – Enchiridion 1:1)July 06, 2021 Episode artwork Putting The Stoic Jew Podcast on Sacred Pause (Aurelius – Meditations 12:23; Epictetus – Enchiridion 17; Seneca – Letter #2)June 18, 2021 Episode artwork Divine Compassion Toward a Foreign Fly (Aurelius – Meditations 9:8)June 17, 2021 Episode artwork Stoic Strategies for Coping with the Kosher Ice Cream Truck (Aurelius – Meditations 2:1)June 16, 2021 Episode artwork The Sacred Pause, Forgetting Hashem, and Mezuzah Experiment Update #3 (Aurelius – Meditations 4:3:1)June 15, 2021 Episode artwork Cold Showers, Complaining, and How We Cause Our Own Suffering (Epictetus – Enchiridion 5,20; Aurelius – Meditations 4:7)June 14, 2021 Episode artwork TSJ Interlude: Korach and My Sacred Pause Mezuzah ExperimentJune 11, 2021 Episode artwork UNDISCLOSED TOPIC (Set Aside 15 Uninterrupted Minutes to Listen While Sitting Down)June 10, 2021 Episode artwork A Response to the Charge of Stoic Heartlessness: Feeling vs. Emotion (Epictetus – Enchiridion 16)June 09, 2021 Episode artwork Be Like a Smelly Goat (Aurelius – Meditations 11:15)June 08, 2021 Episode artwork The Sacred Pause as Applied to Mezuzah (Aurelius – Meditations 5:23)June 07, 2021 Episode artwork Phantom Stress, Being Present, and Embracing My Izzet Nature (Seneca – On the Shortness of Life 7:4)June 04, 2021 Episode artwork Marcus Aurelius, Rabbi Sacks, and Mark Twain on Tragic Fiction (Aurelius – Meditations 11:6)June 03, 2021 Episode artwork