The Transformative Power of Learning

Enlightenment Begins with Learning But Modern People Trust More Their Feelings

Philosophy has traditionally been the most powerful transformative and healing tool available.

Scholars have long acknowledged the power of learning in personal enlightenment. French professor Pierre Hadot devoted most of his research to the concept of “spiritual exercises” in Antiquity. He successfully demonstrated that ancient philosophy had been conceived as a practice for inner awakening and elevation. Through the study of the practices of Stoicism — one of the main philosophical schools of Antiquity — , he unearthed an ancestral method used by philosophers to cultivate the self through deep, mindful and guided learning. The extremely popular Meditations of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius are the greatest example of these Stoic “spiritual exercises.”

Photo by Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash

Like centuries ago, we need to listen to that voice telling us: Take up and read!

Modern society has never been so eager to learn — and we have never had so many resources at hand. Our stimuli have so many options to choose that we end up reading or listening to things that only create the appearance of learning. In our quest for immediacy, we forget that learning is an art: it requires time and, yes, it requires efforts.

Neoplatonic Theology, Tradition, Metaphysics, Sophia Perennis, Indo-European Religion & Spirituality.

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