Satire, Stoicism and Self-Confidence: the Essence of Quibner’s Philosophy

Hey friends, I hope all is well and my friends on the East Coast are not too deep in the snow!

I’m going to take a departure from my normal reportage of events, people and places and talk instead of concepts, three in fact that have been causing great confusion, both amongst my readers and the public at large. As an educator first and foremost, it is incumbent upon me to take whatever time I can and offer instruction into the areas that I am most qualified to lecture upon, and which from the bedrock of my personal philosophy. To wit, they are: Satire; Stoicism; and Self-Confidence. We shall approach Satire first.

This week I had several requests to clarify why my book is satirical and just what the hell satire actually is. Here’s a sample:

“Milt, I read the whole thing and while in places it was hilarious, AND I’m actually going to steal some of your suggestions, I just didn’t get the satire, it seemed like seriously for real.”

Indeed, and he is not alone (by the way, it ain’t stealin’ if you bought it, right?).

Satire is the umbrella term for what I do; parody, comedy and absurdity develop from this. Originally the word ‘satire‘ came from ‘satyr‘ or a male nymphomaniac. In the earliest Dionysian Festivals, he would be put on stage to chase the nymphs at the beginning of the fertility plays, running naked after the lovelies with his huge engorged dick in his hands. Quite obscene, in truth, but a fine introduction to what would soon come.

The satyr was also known for his general lampooning and playfulness along with occasional serious commentary mixed in. By the time of the Classical Period, his appearance on stage had morphed from overt sexuality to a form of political expression, often ribald and offensive. By the time of Swift and his famous ‘A Modest Proposal’, where once it was clear what the author’s intent was (due in large part to a highly dedicated Classical audience), in Swift’s age, the lines had been so blurred that many Londoners took seriously his words and were ready to barbecue their…well, I won’t spoil this must-read classic, but as satire developed, it became harder and harder for regular people to tell whether the author was serious in his choice of words or not. In truth, and as I always say, satire is built on the firmament of truth and then is exaggerated and twisted until its apparent absurdity is revealed.

Yeah, I know, lotta guys are saying, ‘But, Milt, everything you say makes perfect sense!’ and I agree, it does, but isn’t that what Alice said, too, as she pleasantly hurtled down the rabbit hole?

~

I did a podcast interview for the Larry and Lucy Show on Monday night, and though we had a very lively time, I was asked by one listener for my views on Stoicism. She asked, “You said at the beginning of the show you’re a Stoic so does that mean you don’t feel anything, even pleasure?” I thanked her for the question and was probably way too long-winded and didactic for their audience, so I cut myself short and yet still find that there’s a pressing need to understand what I feel is a about the best philosophical code-book for modern times we have in our arsenal.

To be stoical‘ has taken on certain pop connotations, including the idea of being unfeeling or rigidly unemotional, even immovable, and the Germans gained a reputation for perverting the original intent and making it an almost lifeless philosophy for tyrannical purposes. The truth of Stoicism is far from its present understanding.

I’ll save all the background, but to the Stoics, there is no Isn’t, there always Is. The Future? No, there is only Now, the Eternal Now. The Stoics simply didn’t care what happened and were famous for the rhetorical question, “Why should I care if I live or die? It’s all the same.” The Stoics had no problem dying for their cause because they understood that Life is eternal and thus they were eternal and there is really nothing to be feared from dying. This is a truly liberating philosophy and it is centered around the concept known as ataraxia, or ‘without disturbance’, a total indifference to sensitivity, with respect for all people. When the pressure hits, ataraxia keeps you cool. It is the idea that you feel everything, all emotions, but that you never lose your ability to navigate, your center, no matter what is happening within or without. A Stoic never panics, never freaks out, never loses his/her cool. The Stoics constantly trained the individual to keep their center, their balance, at all costs.

In modern times, there is a great need for men especially to learn some Stoic edicts. For instance, if a Stoic should encounter his wife in the arms of his father, he wouldn’t think twice, hell, who cares if she fucks someone else? Doesn’t affect the Stoic to any degree, unless he lets it. Yes, whatever happens, happens, and losing your cool only makes everything worse.

I’ll leave you with this major Stoic ethic: no secrets! If you’re secretive and ashamed of yourself, why are you doing it anyway?
~

In last week’s post, I made a comment regarding self-confidence and how sexy it is. I also included my YouTube message concerning the Dating Dilemma Modern Women are facing, and oh boy did I open up a can of worms. I can’t get to the emails, too many and most very similar, so lets look at Dwight Y and his issue:

“Milt, Milt you killed me that self-confidence thing. My ex just keeps shitting on me, ‘youre nice and all but you got no spine.’ Milt, that really kills, so is there any way to GET self-confidence?”

Dwight, self confidence is everything; without it, your a buoy adrift at sea, subject to whatever forces come sweeping by. With self-confidence, nothing can stop you and you fear no one and especially no thought or idea. You become like a vale tudo fighter from Brasil: you take on anybody, and fearlessly!

I don’t care if you’re fat and ugly, Dwight, BE fat and ugly and don’t apologize for it, and attach a little pride to yourself, too. Don’t expect the world around you to give you your self-confidence; you gotta perform it yourself.

The key, then, from what I’ve said so far, is to be who you are, but how? Therein IS the problem, learning to see the differences between What Is and What is mere Illusion, Vapor and Wind. The is the essential issue in all philosophy, and has never been resolved (and anyone telling you it has is full of sh#t!): the Great Dualism, Being versus Becoming.

BEING or IS is who you ARE, Dwight, BECOMING is You the Vapor, always changing, reaching for, trying to become, but what does a man look like who’s trying as opposed to a man simply doing? No, the issue is learning to Be and releasing Illusion, and confidence comes when you are honest with yourself on who you are and are not. This is the key, and this is what we’ll be working on, for quite some time I would gather…

Yes, facing who you Are ain’t easy, as it means stripping away all your pretences and projections and claiming everything in your universe, rather than looking for the reasons why others and somebody else did it to you. No Dwight, a man or woman in touch with themselves and their Being accepts their life and their experiences and successes and failures and doesn’t look to blame anybody else but themselves. On the flip side, a person in touch with their Being is able to claim credit for what takes place because they earn it, including their sense of pride and self-worth.

I will attach no short-cuts or 12 step programs to self-confidence, for they do not exist no matter who tells you they do. The key is daily working towards that goal and paying attention and observing your thoughts, feelings and actions, as well as those of others. Strong Indica from Northern California is a good aid as well, for it inspires introspection and self-examination, thus I heartily recommend its use!

I’ll be revisiting this crucial issue again, so in the meantime, read my book, as its secrets are profound and life-changing, to say the least.
~

And yes, I am still smarting from the Forty Niners’ loss in the Super Bowl. I’m not gonna get into blaming the refs (although that kickoff return for a TD by the Ravens had some atrocious non-calls, wow) and maybe I’m a sore loser but I see it as a case of us losing rather than the Ravens beating us. We just never fired on all cylinders, and our defense, especially in pass protection, was sub-par. Congratulation to the Ravens, but I’m still sore…

Alright, let’s head off for a great week, keep up the emails and comments and please, make sure you wring from each day all that there is to enjoy!

r.miltonquibner@yahoo.com

Comments
One Response to “Satire, Stoicism and Self-Confidence: the Essence of Quibner’s Philosophy”
  1. I like this weblog it’s a master piece! Glad I discovered this on google.

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