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Stoicism: Ariadne's Thread T

             The subject of modern international relations, which is quite broad, is approached from many different perspectives. Arguably, this makes it imperative to understand the history of the subject in order to understand the present. In The Philosophy of International Relations, F. Parkinson introduces his first chapter by claiming that the remainder of it will be devoted to the evolutionary trends of thought in international relations; however, he ignored all other trends and only focused on one specific ideology: Stoicism. This ideology, which was conceived by the ancient Greeks out of a need to define their values, was integral in developing the Western world's general perspective of international relations. .
             It appears that Stoicism is the key evolutionary trend that Parkinson quite vaguely alludes to in his introduction. Stoicism, as an ideology, not only incited evolutionary trends in international relations; it also underwent many evolutions itself. Once the author approaches the topic of Christian Stoicism, it appears to the undiscerning eye that the thesis has abruptly switched from the evolution of Stoicism to the evolution of Christianity. Upon closer inspection, however, it becomes clearer that when embraced by the Christians, the philosophical structure of Stoicism had made a transition into the religion Christianity. .
             Stoicism did not make the transition from philosophical structure to religion naturally. Instead, it was embraced by esteemed Christians, such as St. Augustine, who manipulated the already-popular principles of Stoicism in order to satisfy Christianity's desire for power. By dividing Stoicism into two separate codes, natural law and divine law, St. Augustine brought an irreversible evolution to the existence of the ideology. St. Augustine felt that by doing so, he could "rescue the principle of universality" (15) by equating world law with an ideal world of divine character.

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