Seneca’s Letters

Michel Daw, the owner of The Stoic Life, has put together a reading plan for Seneca’s Moral Letters.  I’ve been pretty vocal about Seneca being my least favorite Stoic, so I’m looking forward to delving into his texts with a bit more focus.

If you’re interested in following along, you can download the reading plan here.


BOOK I

Week 1

  1. I. On Saving Time
  2. II. On Discursiveness In Reading
  3. III. On True And False Friendship
  4. IV.  On The Terrors Of Death
  5. V. On The Philosopher’s Mean

Week 2

  1. VI. On Sharing Knowledge
  2. VII. On Crowds (Part 1: 1 – 5a)
  3. VII. On Crowds (Part 2: 5b – 12)
  4. VIII. On The Philosopher’s Seclusion
  5. IX. On Philosophy And Friendship (Part 1: 1 – 12)

Week 3

  1. IX.  On Philosophy And Friendship (Part 2: 13 – 22)
  2. X. On Living To Oneself
  3. XI. On The Blush Of Modesty
  4. XII. On Old Age (Part 1: 1 – 6a)
  5. XII. On Old Age (Part 2: 6b – 11)

BOOK II

Week 4

  1. XIII. On Groundless Fears (Part 1: 1 – 9)
  2. XIII. On Groundless Fears (Part 2: 10 – 17)
  3. XIV. Reasons For Withdrawing (Part 1: 1 – 8)
  4. XIV. Reasons For Withdrawing (Part 2: 9 – 18)
  5. XV. On Brawn And Brains

Week 5

  1. XVI. On Philosophy, The Guide Of Life
  2. XVII. On Philosophy And Riches
  3. XVIII. On Festivals And Fasting (Part 1: 1 – 7)
  4. XVIII. On Festivals And Fasting (Part 2: 8 – 15)
  5. XIX. On Worldliness And Retirement (Part 1: 1 – 7)

Week 6

  1. XIX. On Worldliness And Retirement (Part 2: 8 – 12)
  2. XX. On Practising What You Preach (Part 1: 1 – 6)
  3. XX.  On Practising What You Preach (Part 2: 7 – 13)
  4. XXI. Renown My Writings Will Bring You (Part 1: 1 – 6)
  5. XXI. Renown My Writings Will Bring You (Part 2: 7 – 11)

 

Book III

Week 7

  1. XXII. The Futility Of Half-Way Measures (Part 1: 1 – 9a)
  2. XXII. The Futility Of Half-Way Measures (Part 2: 9b – 17)
  3. XXIII. On The True Joy Which Comes From Philosophy
  4. XXIV. On Despising Death (Part 1: 1 – 13)
  5. XXIV. On Despising Death (Part 2: 14 – 26)

Week 8

  1. XXV. On Reformation
  2. XXVI. On Old Age And Death
  3. XXVII. On The Good Which Abides
  4. XXVIII. On Travel As A Cure For Discontent
  5. XXIX. On The Critical Condition Of Marcellinus

 

Book IV

Week 9

  1. XXX. On Conquering The Conqueror
  2. XXXI. On Siren Songs
  3. XXXII. On Progress
  4. XXXIII. On The Futility Of Learning Maxims
  5. XXXIV. On A Promising Pupil
  6. XXXV.On The Friendship Of Kindred Minds

Week 10

  1. XXXVI. On The Value Of Retirement
  2. XXXVII. On Allegiance To Virtue
    XXXVIII.On Quiet Conversation
  3. XXXIX. On Noble Aspirations
  4. XL.  On The Proper Style For A Philosopher’s Discourse
  5. XLI. ON The God Within Us

 

Book V

Week 11

  1. XLII. On Values
  2. XLIII. On The Relativity Of Fame
  3. XLIV. On Philosophy And Pedigrees
  4. XLV. On Sophistical Argumentation (Part 1: 1 – 7)
  5. XLV. On Sophistical Argumentation (Part 2: 8 – 13)

Week 12

  1. XLVI. On A New Book By Lucilius
  2. XLVII. On Master And Slave (Part 1: 1 – 10)
  3. XLVII. On Master And Slave (Part 2: 11 – 21)
  4. XLVIII. On Quibbling As Unworthy Of The Philosopher
  5. XLIX. On The Shortness Of Life (Part 1: 1 – 6a)

Week 13

  1. XLIX. On The Shortness Of Life (Part 2: 6b – 12)
  2. L.  On Our Blindness And Its Cure
  3. LI. On Baiae And Morals
  4. LII. On Choosing Our Teachers (Part 1: 1 – 8a)
  5. LII. On Choosing Our Teachers (Part 2: 8b – 15)

 

Book VI

Week 14

  1. LIII. On The Faults Of The Spirit
  2. LIV. On Asthma And Death
  3. LV. On Vatia’s Villa
  4. LVI. On Quiet And Study (Part 1: 1 – 8a)
  5. LVI. On Quiet And Study (Part 2: 8b – 15)

Week 15

  1. LVII. On The Trials Of Travel
  2. LVIII. On Being (Part 1: 1 – 8a)
  3. LVIII. On Being (Part 2: 8b – 19)
  4. LVIII. On Being (Part 3: 20 – 27a)
  5. LVIII. On Being (Part 4: 27b – 37)

Week 16

  1. LIX. On Pleasure And Joy (Part 1: 1 – 8)
  2. LIX. On Pleasure And Joy (Part 2: 9 – 18)
  3. LX. On Harmful Prayers
  4. LXI. On Meeting Death Cheerfully
  5. LXII. On Good Company

 

Book VII

Week 17

  1. LXIII. On Grief For Lost Friends (Part 1: 1 – 7a)
  2. LXIII. On Grief For Lost Friends (Part 2: 7b – 16)
  3. LXIV. On The Philosopher’s Task
  4. LXV. On The First Cause (Part 1: 1 – 10)
  5. LXV. On The First Cause (Part 2: 11 – 24)

Week 18

  1. LXVI. On Various Aspects Of Virtue (Part 1: 1 – 9)
  2. LXVI. On Various Aspects Of Virtue (Part 2: 10 – 20)
  3. LXVI. On Various Aspects Of Virtue (Part 3: 21 – 30)
  4. LXVI. On Various Aspects Of Virtue (Part 4: 31 – 43)
  5. LXVI. On Various Aspects Of Virtue (Part 5: 42 – 53)

Week 19

 

  1. LXVII. On Ill-Health And Endurance Of Suffering
  2. LXVIII. On Wisdom And Retirement (Part 1: 1 – 9)
  3. LXVIII. On Wisdom And Retirement (Part 2: 10 – 14)
  4. LXIX. On Rest And Restlessness (Part 1: 1 – 7)

 

Book VIII

Week 20

  1. LXX. On The Proper Time (Part 1: 1 – 9)
  2. LXX. On The Proper Time (Part 2: 10 – 19a)
  3. LXX. On The Proper Time (Part 3: 19b – 28)
  4. LXXI. On The Supreme Good (Part 1: 1 – 10)
  5. LXXI. On The Supreme Good (Part 2: 11 – 16a)

Week 21

  1. LXXI. On The Supreme Good (Part 3: 16b – 25)
  2. LXXI. On The Supreme Good (Part 4: 26 – 37)
  3. LXXII. The Enemy Of Philosophy (Part 1: 1 – 6)
  4. LXXII. The Enemy Of Philosophy (Part 2: 7 – 11)
  5. LXXIII. On Philosophers And Kings (Part 1: 1 – 8)

Week 22

  1. LXXIII. On Philosophers And Kings (Part 2: 9 – 16)
  2. LXXIV. On Virtue As A Refuge (Part 1: 1 – 9)
  3. LXXIV. On Virtue As A Refuge (Part 2: 10 – 19a)
  4. LXXIV. On Virtue As A Refuge (Part 3: 19b – 26)
  5. LXXIV. On Virtue As A Refuge (Part 4: 27 – 34)

 

Book IX

Week 23

  1. LXXV. On The Diseases Of The Soul (Part 1: 1 – 10)
  2. LXXV. On The Diseases Of The Soul (Part 2: 11 – 18)
  3. LXXVI. On Learning Wisdom In Old Age (Part 1: 1 – 10)
  4. LXXVI. On Learning Wisdom In Old Age (Part 2: 11 – 17)
  5. LXXVI. On Learning Wisdom In Old Age (Part 3: 18 – 26a)

Week 24

  1. LXXVI. On Learning Wisdom In Old Age (Part 4: 26b–35)
  2. LXXVII. On Taking One’s Own Life (Part 1: 1 – 12a)
  3. LXXVII. On Taking One’s Own Life (Part 2: 12b – 20)
  4. LXXVIII. The Healing Power Of The Mind (Part 1: 1–6)
  5. LXXVIII. The Healing Power Of The Mind (Part 2: 7-15a)

Week 25

  1. LXXVIII. The Healing Power Of The Mind (Part 3: 15b-21)
  2. LXXVIII. The Healing Power Of The Mind (Part 4: 22-29)
  3. LXXIX. On The Rewards Of Discovery (Part 1: 1-10)
  4. LXXIX. On The Rewards Of Discovery (Part 2: 11-18)
  5. LXXX. On Worldly Deceptions

 

Book X

Week 26

  1. LXXXI. On Benefits (Part 1: 1 – 10a)
  2. LXXXI. On Benefits (Part 2: 10b – 19a)
  3. LXXXI. On Benefits (Part 3: 19b – 23a)
  4. LXXXI. On Benefits (Part 4: 23b – 32)
  5. LXXXII. On The Natural Fear Of Death (Part 1: 1 – 7)

Week 27

  1. LXXXII. On The Natural Fear Of Death (Part 2: 8 – 18)
  2. LXXXII. On The Natural Fear Of Death (Part 3: 19 – 24)
  3. LXXXIII. On Drunkenness (Part 1: 1 – 7)
  4. LXXXIII. On Drunkenness (Part 2: 8 – 19a)
  5. LXXXIII. On Drunkenness (Part 3: 19b – 27)

 

Books XI-XIII

Week 28

  1. LXXXIV. On Gathering Ideas (Part 1: 1 – 8a)
  2. LXXXIV. On Gathering Ideas (Part 2: 8b – 13)
  3. LXXXV. On Some Vain Syllogisms (Part 1: 1 – 12)
  4. LXXXV. On Some Vain Syllogisms (Part 2: 13 – 19a)
  5. LXXXV. On Some Vain Syllogisms (Part 3: 19b – 27)

Week 29

  1. LXXXV. On Some Vain Syllogisms (Part 4: 28 – 32)
  2. LXXXV. On Some Vain Syllogisms (Part 5: 33 – 41)
  3. LXXXVI. On Scipio’s Villa (Part 1: 1 – 10)
  4. LXXXVI. On Scipio’s Villa (Part 2: 11 – 21)
  5. LXXXVII. In Favour Of The Simple Life (Part 1: 1-8)

Week 30

  1. LXXXVII. In Favour Of The Simple Life (Part 2: 9-18a)
  2. LXXXVII. In Favour Of The Simple Life (Part 3: 18b-25)
  3. LXXXVII. In Favour Of The Simple Life (Part 4: 26-34)
  4. LXXXVII. In Favour Of The Simple Life (Part 5: 35-41)
  5. LXXXVIII. On Studies (Part 1: 1-8)

Week 31

  1. LXXXVIII. On Studies (Part 2: 9-15)
  2. LXXXVIII. On Studies (Part 3: 16-23)
  3. LXXXVIII. On Studies (Part 4: 24-30)
  4. LXXXVIII. On Studies (Part 5: 31-38a)
  5. LXXXVIII. On Studies (Part 6: 38b-46)

 

Book XIV

Week 32

  1. LXXXIX. On The Parts Of Philosophy (Part 1: 1-8)
  2. LXXXIX. On The Parts Of Philosophy (Part 2: 9-15)
  3. LXXXIX. On The Parts Of Philosophy (Part 3: 16-23)
  4. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 1: 1-6)
  5. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 2: 7-13a)

Week 33

  1. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 3: 13b-17)
  2. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 4: 18-23)
  3. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 5: 24-28a)
  4. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 6: 28b-33)
  5. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 7: 34-39a)

Week 34

  1. XC. On The Part Played By Philosophy (Part 8: 39b-46)
  2. XCI. On The Burning Of Lyons (Part 1: 1-7a)
  3. XCI. On The Burning Of Lyons (Part 2: 7b-14)
  4. XCI. On The Burning Of Lyons (Part 3: 15-21)
  5. XCII. On The Happy Life (Part 1: 1-7)

Week 35

  1. XCII. On The Happy Life (Part 2: 8-13)
  2. XCII. On The Happy Life (Part 3: 14-18)
  3. XCII. On The Happy Life (Part 4: 19-23)
  4. XCII. On The Happy Life (Part 5: 24-29)
  5. XCII. On The Happy Life (Part 6: 30-35)

 

Book XV

Week 36

  1. XCIII. On The Quality Of Life (Part 1: 1-5)
  2. XCIII. On The Quality Of Life (Part 2: 6-12)
  3. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 1: 1-7)
  4. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 2: 8-16a)
  5. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 3: 16b-21)

Week 37

  1. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 4: 22-30a)
  2. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 5: 30b-40a)
  3. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 6: 40b-46a)
  4. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 7: 46b-54)
  5. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 8: 55-63)

Week 38

  1. XCIV. On The Value Of Advice (Part 9: 64-74)
  2. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 1: 1-9a)
  3. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 2: 9b-18a)
  4. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 3: 18b-25)
  5. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 4: 26-35)

Week 39

  1. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 5: 36-41)
  2. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 6: 42-49)
  3. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 7: 50-59a)
  4. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 8: 59b-64)
  5. XCV. On The Usefulness Of Principles (Part 9: 65-73)

 

Book XVI

Week 40

  1. XCVI. On Facing Hardships
  2. XCVII. On The Degeneracy Of The Age (Part 1: 1-8)
  3. XCVII. On The Degeneracy Of The Age (Part 2: 9-16)
  4. XCVIII. On The Fickleness Of Fortune (Part 1: 1-8)
  5. XCVIII. On The Fickleness Of Fortune (Part 2: 9-18)

Week 41

  1. XCIX. On Consolation To The Bereaved (Part 1: 1-13a)
  2. XCIX. On Consolation To The Bereaved (Part 2: 13b-21)
  3. XCIX. On Consolation To The Bereaved (Part 3: 22-32)
  4. C. On The Writings Of Fabianus (Part 1: 1-7)
  5. C. On The Writings Of Fabianus (Part 2: 8-12)

 

Books XVII – XVIII

Week 42

  1. CI. On The Futility Of Planning Ahead (Part 1: 1-8)
  2. CI. On The Futility Of Planning Ahead (Part 2: 9-15)
  3. CII. On Our Immortality (Part 1: 1-7)
  4. CII. On Our Immortality (Part 2: 8-15)
  5. CII. On Our Immortality (Part 3: 16-25)

Week 43

  1. CII. On Our Immortality (Part 4: 26-30)
  2. CIII. On The Dangers Of Association
  3. CIV. On Health And Peace Of Mind (Part 1: 1-8)
  4. CIV. On Health And Peace Of Mind (Part 2: 9-19a)
  5. CIV. On Health And Peace Of Mind (Part 3: 19b-26)

Week 44

  1. CIV. On Health And Peace Of Mind (Part 4: 27-34)
  2. CV. On Facing The World With Confidence
  3. CVI. On The Corporeality Of Virtue
  4. CVII. On Obedience To The Universal Will
  5. CVIII. On The Approaches To Philosophy (Part 1: 1-9a)

Week 45

  1. CVIII. On The Approaches To Philosophy (Part 2: 9b-16)
  2. CVIII. On The Approaches To Philosophy (Part 3: 17-27a)
  3. CVIII. On The Approaches To Philosophy (Part 4: 27b-38)
  4. CIX. On The Fellowship Of Wise Men (Part 1: 1-11)
  5. CIX. On The Fellowship Of Wise Men (Part 2: 12-18)

 

Book XIX

Week 46

  1. CX. On True And False Riches (Part 1: 1-10)
  2. CX. On True And False Riches (Part 2: 11-20)
  3. CXI. On The Vanity Of Mental Gymnastics
  4. CXII. On Reforming Hardened Sinners
  5. CXIII. On The Vitality Of The Soul (Part 1: 1-8a)

Week 47

  1. CXIII. On The Vitality Of The Soul (Part 2: 8b-22)
  2. CXIII. On The Vitality Of The Soul (Part 3: 23-32)
  3. CXIV. On Style As A Mirror Of Character (Part 1: 1-8a)
  4. CXIV. On Style As A Mirror Of Character (Part 2: 8b-14)
  5. CXIV. On Style As A Mirror Of Character (Part 3: 15-19)

Week 48

  1. CXIV. On Style As A Mirror Of Character (Part 4: 20-27)
  2. CXV. On The Superficial Blessings (Part 1: 1-7)
  3. CXV. On The Superficial Blessings (Part 2: 8-13a)
  4. CXV. On The Superficial Blessings (Part 3: 13b-18)
  5. CXVI. On Self-Control

Week 49

  1. CXVII. On Real Ethics (Part 1: 1-7a)
  2. CXVII. On Real Ethics (Part 2: 7b-14)
  3. CXVII. On Real Ethics (Part 3: 15-22)
  4. CXVII. On Real Ethics (Part 4: 23-29)
  5. CXVII. On Real Ethics (Part 5: 30-33)

Book XX

Week 50

  1. CXVIII. On The Vanity Of Place-Seeking (Part 1: 1-9)
  2. CXVIII. On The Vanity Of Place-Seeking (Part 2: 10-17)
  3. CXIX. On Nature As Our Best Provider (Part 1: 1-6)
  4. CXIX. On Nature As Our Best Provider (Part 2: 7-16)
  5. CXX. More About Virtue (Part 1: 1-10)

Week 51

  1. CXX. More About Virtue (Part 2: 11-22)
  2. CXXI. On Instinct In Animals (Part 1: 1-13)
  3. CXXI. On Instinct In Animals (Part 2: 14-24)
  4. CXXII. On Darkness (Part 1: 1-8)
  5. CXXII. On Darkness (Part 2: 9-19)

Week 52

  1. CXXIII. Between Pleasure And Virtue (Part 1: 1-7)
  2. CXXIII. Between Pleasure And Virtue (Part 2: 8-17)
  3. CXXIV. On The True Good (Part 1: 1-9a)
  4. CXXIV. On The True Good (Part 2: 9b-16)
  5. CXXIV. On The True Good (Part 3: 17-24)

Closing Notes.