Why you must contemplate death.

Stoic philosophy has gained unprecedented popularity as of late. Due mostly in part to these two gentlemen. If you don’t know the stoics and aren’t one for deep philosophical pondering of the world I recommend starting here. If you are I recommend starting here. Regardless of what you do, I highly recommend embracing stoicism. One of the major themes of stoicism is developing a love for life or everything that happens to you (amor fati). The sister theme of stoicism is to contemplate your own death (memento mori).

I would like to share my own relationship experience with embracing these principles and how they have enriched my own life. At the age of 21 I entered into Marine Corps Officer’s Candidate School. I graduated the course in between my junior and senior year of college. Upon returning to the small school down the road from Yale, I took a course on “The Sociology of Death, Grief, and Bereavement.” We did ridiculous things in that course. We wrote last letters to loved ones. We re-enacted funerals. We studied the psychology of death. It was in my opinion something that best prepared me for life as a platoon commander and life in general.

While I was taking the course I was convinced I would be in Iraq or Afghanistan soon after college. That thought was a scary one. Mostly because I was sure I would quickly and frequently interact with death on a daily basis. More scary than the loss of my own life was contemplating the loss of life of a Marine under my charge. Yet I frequently contemplated in my own mind what it would mean should I die overseas. What would that do to the people who cared about me? What would it do to the legacy I desired to leave behind (#letsleavealegacy). In response I convinced myself that I would assuredly be dead by 30. I full-heartedly accepted this as my fait.

I cannot begin to describe to you what that has done for me in life. This past July I celebrated my 30th birthday. Today my wife and I announced that we are not only welcoming our second child into the McCarthy family, but it will also be a girl. Each and every day I practice the gratitude that comes with reminding yourself that you are living longer than you ever expected. Each day on this earth for me is a gift. Now, I am not in the slightest way, shape, or form, advocating for everyone to convince themselves that they will die within 10 years in the hope that they survive an appreciate life more as a result.

What I am advocating though, is that you do remind yourself. One day you will die. One day this world will end for you and nothing will be left but your memory. Many of us fear contemplating death. I promise, to do so opens up your mind to the greatest appreciation possible for the life you have on this earth. In a world full of instagrams convincing us we don’t have enough it is a truly miraculous thing to understand that soon, none of it will matter for anyone. This is not to further the argument that millennials should forget about their goals and quit their job to pursue their passions as a dude/chick living in a van traveling the world. More on that in another post, but this is to further the argument that we should appreciate our journey in life.

Take this story for an example of appreciating life while capturing your goals. Katrín Davíðsdóttir one of the fittest women in the world looked at her coach at the end of winning the Crossfit Games, and said, “I don’t feel any different.” He reminded her that happiness does not lie on the other side of achievement. It lies in the journey. Contemplating your own death is about appreciating the journey that is this life. Every day, moment, and second. Memento Mori.

About the Author

John McCarthy is the founder of the Post Modern Patriot blog and the host of our podcast. He is a former Marine Infantry Officer, Husband, father, and son. He is obsessed with individual performance in the realms of health, wealth, relationships, and the intersection of all three. He strives to share that with the world so that he can empower others to live boldly. Let’s leave a legacy!!!

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EP 60: Making The Vision You Have A Reality, with Joe Benvenuti

Today’s Episode is probably my personal favorite show ever!!! Joe Benevenuti is my lifelong best friend and one of my first mentors. Joe and I discuss everything it takes to set goals, have discipline in working toward those goals, and achieve and enjoy those goals. Joe also shares some amazing lessons learned in writing a book, coaching others, and transforming himself and growing up with me. If you’re one of those people looking to transform yourself into the man or woman you one day hope to become, this is definitely the episode for you.

Links from Today’s Show

Jim Rohn

Arnold’s Encyclopedia of Modern Body Building

Erroneous Zones by Wayne Dyer

Joe’s Instagram

Fearless Approach

This Podcast is Brought to you By:

Our MISSION

The Aaron Redd Foundation is a 501C3 Charity dedicated to inspiring hope, strength, and joy in our communities by supporting programs and opportunities that encourage leadership, honor, and respect in our youth, and aiding veterans, active duty military, first responders, and their families in times of need.

I’m a huge fan of the Aaron Redd Foundation and fortunate enough to sit on their scholarship committee. I hope you all will support the organization however you can. Thank you.

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Are You Called To Serve?

My guest on this week’s show, Chris Albert of the Warrior Soul podcast, dropped a pretty prophetic message on my listeners. He said, “I truly believe that veterans are the sleeping giant in this country.” At a time when this country is struggling with its own identity, we find ourselves at a crossroads. Do we accept our history and come to grips with it? Or do we attempt to erase it from our memory to start anew?

There is a group of people in this country who have developed a unique set of skills to deal with adversity and overcome. Those people are none other than the Millennial Generation. How can that be possible? How can a group of young 30 somethings who are obsessed with their image on social media and different types of avocado toast, find a way to pull this nation up by its bootstraps?

The Millennial Generation has withstood more adversity than many generations and for some reason, people don’t give us enough credit. In my lifetime I have witnessed the stock market crash from a dotcom bubble. I watched the twin towers collapse on themselves and saw the smoke billowing over Manhattan from nearby Sandy Hook. I watched the market crash again during a housing crisis. I watched us invade Iraq and Afghanistan.

We find ourselves amid a pandemic. Something our nation hasn’t experienced since the outbreak of the Spanish Flu over a century ago. As if that weren’t enough we now are witnessing a civil rights movement that seems to be far less peaceful than its predecessor. As a platoon commander, I was taught that the failures of a platoon were a direct reflection of their leadership. Likewise, the failures and struggles of this nation are a direct reflection of our leadership at every single level. From your local community up through the center of the national political stage.

This crisis of leadership knows no color, creed, or sexual orientation. Furthermore, it does not align with a single faction or party. Unlike many things in this country, it does not discriminate in the slightest. Our nation’s leadership crisis is universal. Unlike the media and many of my fellow Americans, I refuse to propose this problem without recommending a solution.

Our nation’s burden now falls on the Millennial Generation to inherit these issues. We no longer have the ability to point the finger. Instead, we must work to find solutions. The entire heritage of this nation depends upon it. Failing to do so would be a slap in the face to all of those who have struggled to provide us this house upon a hill. As a generation, we must work to serve our people and to lead by example. We must be the change we wish to see in our society. That change starts with service.

Why must we do so? I can promise you that regardless of what you have been taught in school, or what the media has convinced you of, the world looks toward America to set the example. As of late, we have failed to set an appropriate one. We have not been the beacon of light for others to look for and flock toward. If your desire for setting the example cannot be an altruistic one then I have another promise for my generation. There is no greater feeling on this earth than to serve your people in a cause you would willingly give yourself up for.

Like many before you, you may not be ready. You may see yourself as unprepared and lacking in the moral fortitude necessary to serve your people. We are rarely ever fully prepared for the service that is needed of us. If you have never in your life heard the call to serve, now is the time when it is screaming in your face. Our country needs a group to step forward and take up the mantle of democracy. To be the bright force that others can call upon to develop their mental fortitude. It starts with giving yourself to your neighbor, followed by your town, your state, and eventually your nation. 

With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan—to do all which may achieve and cherish a just, and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.

Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address

EP 59: Warrior Soul with Chris Albert

My guest on today’s show is Chris is the founder of Warrior Soul Agoge, which is a community of Veterans seeking to reawaken and hone their warrior spirits for success in the modern world. With the Agoge consisting of an apparel line, a podcast, and a mastermind group called the Warrior’s Obituary Society. Prior to this Chris was an Infantry Marine, Founder of a major gym in Long Beach California, and pursued a doctorate in political science and has developed skills as a social scientist. His story is an honest one, full of ups, and downs that I think each one of us can relate to. I’m excited to share that story with my listenership.

Links from today’s show

My interview on the Warrior Soul Podcast

Stats on the relationship between crime and fatherlessness

Is Alcoholism hereditary or genetic?

Mike Rashid

C.T. Fletcher

The correlation of success in life and being a member of a Fraternity or Sorority

Delphi

48 Laws of Power

Gary John Bishop

The Brother Karamazov

Warrior Soul: The Grand Inquisitor

Fearvana: The revolutionary science of how to turn fear into Health, Wealth, and Happiness

This Podcast is Brought to you By:

Our MISSION

The Aaron Redd Foundation is a 501C3 Charity dedicated to inspiring hope, strength, and joy in our communities by supporting programs and opportunities that encourage leadership, honor, and respect in our youth, and aiding veterans, active duty military, first responders, and their families in times of need.

I’m a huge fan of the Aaron Redd Foundation and fortunate enough to sit on their scholarship committee. I hope you all will support the organization however you can. Thank you.

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EP 58: Facing Life’s Greatest Challenges Alone with Mark D’ambrosio

Mark D’ambrosio was a finalist in the History Channel’s hit show Alone in their most recent, million dollar, 100 day arctic survival show. Mark is a sniper and survival skills instructor. At the age of 22 Mark enlisted in the Marine Corps and conducted special operations for the reconnaissance and scout sniper communities for 10 years. He also served as a scout sniper and survival instructor at the Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Training Center in Bridgeport California. After leaving the Marine Corps Mark started, International Mountain Survival, a sniper and survival skills school.

Links in Show Notes

SERE school

Doxycycline

Trichinosis

Andy Stumpf on Joe Rogan

The Marine Gunner

Battlefield to Back Country

Deep Survival

This Podcast is Brought to you By:

Our MISSION

The Aaron Redd Foundation is a 501C3 Charity dedicated to inspiring hope, strength, and joy in our communities by supporting programs and opportunities that encourage leadership, honor, and respect in our youth, and aiding veterans, active duty military, first responders, and their families in times of need.

I’m a huge fan of the Aaron Redd Foundation and fortunate enough to sit on their scholarship committee. I hope you all will support the organization however you can. Thank you.

Think our Podcast is Awesome!! Subscribe below.

Check out some of our other posts and episodes.

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Ep57: How to climb the corporate ladder, be a Family Man, and chase your dreams with John Ross Cocozza

John Ross Cocozza is the host of the Point Blank Podcast, he is the head of Ross Brewing Company, and in his spare time he’s an Associate Vice President at L’Oreal international. John and I discuss what it is like to be a father of two teenage children in the middle of the Pandemic, why we do things like work full time and run a podcast, and how he manages his time to still run a side hustle. I was fortunate enough to be on John’s show myself and every conversation I have with the man is an extremely enlightening one. Tune in to hear how you can climb the corporate ladder, be an awesome Dad, and still chase down your dreams.

Links From today’s Show

Cigar City Brewing Company

Beyond Band of Brothers

Parachute Infantry Memoirs

Understanding Compounding Interest

Understanding Self-efficacy Theory

This Podcast is Brought to you By:

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Our MISSION

The Aaron Redd Foundation is a 501C3 Charity dedicated to inspiring hope, strength, and joy in our communities by supporting programs and opportunities that encourage leadership, honor, and respect in our youth, and aiding veterans, active duty military, first responders, and their families in times of need.

I’m a huge fan of the Aaron Redd Foundation and fortunate enough to sit on their scholarship committee. I hope you all will support the organization however you can. Thank you.

Think our Podcast is Awesome!! Subscribe below.

Check out some of our other posts and episodes.

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EP 56: 3 Things this Nation needs to hear Right now

On today’s episode I share 3 things I think this nation needs to hear right now. I discuss my brief interaction with a WWII vet that reframed my opinion of the world around me, My belief about millennials and the future of this country, and Common Identities vs Common Enemies. I hope that you will tune in for this short format episode where check in on a few themes and topics I want to tease out.

Links from Today’s Show:

George Raveling’s First interview on the TF show

George Raveling’s Recent Interview on the TF show

The Coddling of the American Mind

What’s On Brew:

I’m a huge fan of ROOK Coffee and it really is one of the best cups of coffee I think you can get at the Jersey Shore. Fortunately they ship their coffee across the country and this company is one that I highly recommend just checking out because one day they will knock Starbucks off their lead. They’re so awesome the purposely open up right next to different Starbucks locations just so they can do so.

Podcast I recommend Listening to:

I am a huge fan of Hugh Jackman and his abilities as a Renaissance man of sorts. I mean the man can, dance, act, sing, jack steel, and he does it all at an elite level. I have never had the opportunity to get inside the mind of the man until now, to find out what makes him tick. Tim Ferris does an amazing job of teasing out the concepts, and frameworks he has used to make himself successful. It’s such a good listen even Baby Gurl (my wife) was paying attention and she never listens to podcasts I listen to. Listen here

My Interview on the Warrior Soul Podcast:

My Interview on the Warrior Soul Podcast was quite an interesting one. Chris Albert is a really interesting individual, Fellow Marine, and a fellow student of social psycholog and I highly recommend you check out his show. Start out by listening to our conversation by clicking the button below.

This Podcast is Brought to you By:

Our MISSION

The Aaron Redd Foundation is a 501C3 Charity dedicated to inspiring hope, strength, and joy in our communities by supporting programs and opportunities that encourage leadership, honor, and respect in our youth, and aiding veterans, active duty military, first responders, and their families in times of need.

I’m a huge fan of the Aaron Redd Foundation and fortunate enough to sit on their scholarship committee. I hope you all will support the organization however you can. Thank you.

Think our Podcast is Awesome!! Subscribe below.

Check out some of our other posts and episodes.

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EP 55: A united America, With DAkota Meyer

Dakota Meyer is the first living Marine to receive the Medal of Honor since Vietnam. His book, Into The Fire recounts his first hand experience and the trials and tribulations he went through to save over 36 soldiers including more than two dozen Afghan Army soldiers. What I love most about Dakota is the new ethos he has chosen to live his life by since returning home. His apparel company Own the Dash sells shirts, challenge coins, takes people sky-diving and encourages others to focus on making that dash between the day they are born and the day they are living one worth talking about. When he’s not found sky-diving he’s out practicing jiu-jitsu and owning his dash. After listening to Dakota on Rogan I learned he is more than a warrior, he’s a philosopher too. Dakota welcome to the show.

Want to Hear More about Dakota Meyer?

Check him out on Joe Rogan

Check him out on Jocko Willink’s podcast

Links From Today’s Show

Dakota’s Book- Into the Fire

The Own the Dash Poem

Dakota’sOwn The Dash

Flipside Canvas Prints

Dakota On Instagram

Dakota’s Energy Drink

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EP 54: Find a Way to Win with Patrick Nugent

Today’s Guest is one of my favorite guests yet. Patrick Nugent was shot in the back during a live fire training exercise five days into his second deployment as a Company Executive Officer. After being rushed to Tripler Army Hospital and ultimately Walter Reed things looked dim. Patrick’s parents were told he may not walk and would most likely not have children. This coming weekend he is engaging in one of the most grueling endurance tests I’ve ever heard of (see below). Patrick embodies a single ethos that he repeats daily. Find a way to win. To hear this compelling episode and his (even more compelling) story, tune into this episode that focuses on recovery, and a refusal to quit. Please enjoy the story of a man I’m fortunate enough to consider a friend, Captain Patrick Nugent, USMC (Retired).

Gryt Endurance Test Events

Challenged Athletes Foundation

Check out the website that provided Nugent with a Bike to begin his journey to achievement.

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EP 53: Writing your own adventure Story with Harry Walker

Today’s guest on the show is a fellow Infantry Officer and IOC classmate of mine. Harry Walker commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps in May 2014. He graduated as an Infantry Officer from Infantry Officer’s Course 2-15. Upon his assignment to 1st Battalion Third Marines based in Oahu, Hawaii, he served as C Co’s 1st Platoon Rifle Platoon Commander, C Co Weapons Platoon Commander and Fire Support Team Leader, and finished his tour as the Assistant Operations Office for the Third Marine Regiment. Upon separating from the Marine Corps in June 2018 as a Captain, Harry conducted two deployments to South Africa as an Anti Poaching Unit Team Leader. In October 2019 Harry enlisted in the Army National Guard, resigning his commission and entering as an 11B Sergeant. He was selected to be attached to 20th Special Forces Group to await further training in the Army Special Forces Pipeline. In January 2020 Harry founded War Horse Athletics, a coaching community committed to physically and mentally preparing Tactical Athletes for the rigors of their profession. Harry is currently preparing to begin the 2020 Wildland Fire season with the Vegas Valley Veterans Initial Attack Handcrew while awaiting Special Forces Training.

Links From Today’s Show

VETPAW

Wildland Fire Fighters

Full Moon Cycle and Poaching

The Kruger

Colin Patrick

Dog Packs in the Kreuger

Oliphants Game Reserve

Nyala Antelope Subspecies

Warhorse athletics website

Warhorse athletics Instagram

Harry Walker’s Instagram

Show Sponsors

The Aaron Redd Foundation is a foundation that provides scholarships to Coast Guardsmen and their dependents. I am proud to sit on the Scholarship Board of this foundation and I believe in what they are doing. Please learn more about the Legacy Aaron left by clicking here.

Do you like to break a mental sweat as well. I know I sure do. I hate getting 30 pages into a shitty book and hating it. Which is why I ask for recommendations for all of my books from anyone I can. The Post Modern Patriot Book club releases a new book every month that I personally have vetted. Join here

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