Cassius: Of your philosophy you make no use If you give place to accidental evils. What philosophy does Cassius refer to in the above lines?   What is its teaching as is relevant here? Does Brutus deserve this mild blame from Cassius? Give a reason.

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The philosophy that Cassius refers to in his conversation with Brutus in Julius Caesar Act IV Scene 3 is Stoicism. The Stoic philosophy held that a virtuous person would be happy whatever happened to him or her, since all things were predetermined and it was folly to protest against the workings of the universal order. A Stoic should thus be immune from being upset by anything that happened to him because of outside forces, and Brutus' remark that "I am sick of many griefs" (line 160) seems incompatible with Stoicism. Thus, Brutus does deserve the blame he receives from Cassius, given what Cassius knows of the situation at that point. However, Brutus goes on to reveal that his wife Portia is dead, having committed suicide in despair at news of Brutus' reverses. He then dismisses her briefly: "Speak no more of her" (line 177), reverting to his professed Stocism and the behavior it prescribes, which often seems outwardly unfeeling or inhuman.

 

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