MMA as a path to stoic virtue
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MMA as a path to stoic virtue book
Traditional martial arts are typically conceived of as being not just sports, but also means of developing character, discipline, and virtue within the individual. This chapter will argue that MMA is actually just as well-suited to cultivate virtue as traditional martial arts, despite seeming to encourage violence, brutality, and a disregard for the safety of others. This will be argued by comparing MMA to the ancient Greek philosophy of Stoicism, in particular three Stoic lessons that are learned in MMA: dichotomy of control (focusing on what is in one’s power to affect), reimagining obstacles (seeing hardships as opportunities and challenges), and choosing virtue over pleasure. MMA is thus an excellent means of cultivating Stoic virtue, and hence should be considered on par with traditional martial arts in this regard.