[MUSIC] The goal of life, according to Zeno is to live in agreement with nature. All the Stoics follow him and this conception of the end although they differ in their precise formulations of it. Now by living in agreement with nature, Zeno doesn't mean going back to the land, rejecting processed foods or opting for natural fibers, organic foods for a paleo diet. It is not a rejection of the artificial or the conventional. As Chrysippus explains, the goal is to live consistently with nature, that is according to one's own nature and that of the universe. Doing nothing forbidden by the common law, which is right reason, penetrating all things, and is the same as Zeus who was the leader of the administration of all things. The key point here is that the nature we are supposed to follow or agree with is twofold. It is, first of all, our own natures and second of all, it's the nature of the universe. The divine reason permeating all things which the Stoics identify as God. So, we're going to take up these points separately and see, first of all, what the Stoics have in mind by living in agreement with our own nature. And second, what it means to be living in agreement with the divine nature that governs the universe. So, living in agreement with our own nature. What does Stoics mean by our own nature is pretty much what Aristotle singles out in the function argument when he looks for the distinctive capacity of human beings. Plants have internal principle of growth. This is their physis, or nature in the strict sense. Animals have soul in addition. This gives them the powers of sensation in what the Stoics call impulse. Impulse is goal-directed behavior. The pursuit and avoidance of what we find congenial or alien to ourselves. As animals, we have both sensation and impulse. But as rational animals, we also have reason, the faculty we share with the divine. To live in agreement with our own nature then is to live in accordance with our reason. More specifically, it is to use our reason to govern our faculty of impulse. As Diogenes Laertius reports the stoic view, animals use impulse in pursuit of things to which they have affinity. So for them, what is natural is governed by what is according to impulse. But when reason has been given to rational animals as a more perfect governor, then for them life according to reason properly becomes what's natural for them. For they have reason in addition as the artisan of impulse. The point is that for an animal to follow it's own nature, is for it to engage in goal-directed behavior, that is action according to impulse. But for a rational animal to follow its own nature, is for it to use reason, to be the governor or artisan of impulse. Now what it is to be reason to be the artisan or craftsman, that is, technites, of impulse. One thing the Stoics have in mind here is their doctrine of ascent. They maintain that in rational creatures, all impulse or action arises from the ascent of the rational faculty. We don't do anything unless our reason has judged it to be the right course of action to take. So that's a pretty straightforward sense in which reason is the artisan, or the craftsman, of impulse. Impulse is actually produced by reason. And the way shoes are produced by the shoemaker. But that's not all there is to reason's being the artisan or craftsman of impulse. We can get a sense of the further dimension by noting the connection between the phrase artisan of impulse, that is technites, tes hormes and another important phrase in stoic ethics, the art of living. The tehne tou biou. This is the virtuous person practices. Now, when we talk about the art of living, we are not using art in the sense, in which we sometime contrast art with science. Art here translates techne which is the root of our term technology. And it could equally well be translated, expertise. The art of living, the techne tou biou is a kind of knowledge or expertise. Exercising the art of living means, in particular cases, knowing what the right thing to do is. In stoic terminology this this to know and to do what is kathekon. While it is generally kathekon to pursue the sort of things that are congenial to our animal nature, such as health, life, the well being of our children, sometimes it is not. As when courage requires us to risk bodily injury and death. Or when justice requires that we not put our own children first and so on for all the other virtues. In general, in exercising the art of living, we regulate the sorts of pursuits and avoidance that are a part of our animal nature in the light of standards of what is appropriate, or kathekon. These are standards involving the correct use of reason. Indeed in one text we find a definition of the kathekon, as what is eulogon or reasonable to do. So to return to our question of what it is to follow our own nature as rational animals, we can conclude that it is to exercise the art of living and thereby regulate the pursuit and avoidance behavior that is part of our animal nature. As the Stoic speaker in Cicero's On the nature of the God says. Nature gave to beasts the power of sense perception and motion and the ability to use a kind of impulse to acquire beneficial things and avoid dangerous things. Her gifts to humans were greater in that she added reason, by which the soul's impulses could be governed. So here again we have a version of what we find in Aristotle, although articulated in stoic vocabulary and concepts. But as we turn to our next question and see what living in agreement with the nature of the universe involves, we will find the distinctively stoic doctrines that set them apart from the Aristotelians. And indeed from just about every other school and an antiquity.