Stoic Justice And Social Media

The Stoic concept of justice is a powerful tool for understanding our obligations to each other in the digital world we live in today. At its core, the Stoics conceptualized Justice as a framework for how we should act and make judgements in accordance with the natural order of things. For the Stoics, all of our actions inform a just or unjust society, and so we should be mindful of them.

One way that Stoic justice can inform our morality online is by reminding us of the importance of treating others with respect and fairness. When you’re scrolling social media, it’s all too easy to hide behind a screen and say or do things that we wouldn’t dream of saying or doing in person. Even if we don’t speak the judgemental thoughts out loud, if they are there and we are indulging in them, the poisonous effect is the same.

But as the Stoics remind us, every person is a part of the natural order and deserving of respect and fairness. Everyone is how they are because of an innumerable number of nature and nurture factors. It is worth remembering that everyone is on their own path and moving at their own pace, whether they realize it or not. This will help us to think twice before posting that snarky comment or lashing out in anger.

Stoic justice can also inform our understanding of human nature in the digital world by reminding us of the importance of self-control. The digital world is filled with an endless stream of distractions, and it can be easy to get caught up in doom-scrolling for hours. But as the Stoics remind us, we must always strive to maintain control over our own minds and actions. This means being mindful of how much time we spend online and most importantly, the long-lasting negative effects of losing control of our attention and attention span, which our phones do a good job of reducing dramatically.

“Justice is a contract of expediency, entered upon to prevent men harming or being harmed.”

-Epictetus

We often forget the humanity of the person behind the screen. We should remember that behind every troll, every hateful comment, and every threat, there is a human being. And just as we would want to be treated with compassion and understanding, we should extend that same kindness to others, even when it may seem impossible.