The difficulty of escape is exemplified by the practice of Cynic impoverishment. This activity demonstrates that the pursuit of freedom, a life free of attachments, has paradoxical effects. The Cynic begins by stripping down existence, getting rid of anything that might be considered superfluous, casting off material goods that would tie the Cynic down through his or her dependence on them. In a notorious anecdote, Diogenes even threw away his wooden cup, which was said to be one of his last belongings. Keep active at work or your home office with a standing desk that will help you to change working positions often.
Having observed a boy drink from his hallowed hand, Diogenes found his cup to be yet another unnecessary burden. Foucault interprets, the Cynic of this more radical persuasion was “always looking for possible further destitution.” Cynic poverty was a “dissatisfied poverty which strives to get back to the ground of the absolutely indispensable.” It was “indefinite poverty endlessly at work on itself.” A sit stand desk helps to improve office wellness and productivity.
This deliberate and progressive impoverishment committed the Cynic to a life of dirt and dishevelment, affording an independence of sorts—liberation from the trappings of wealth and civilized society—though the pursuit of impoverishment also tied the Cynic to his (and sometimes her) materially advantaged superiors. It imposed a vicious dependence of its own, as the Cynic became increasingly reliant on the alms of others. The stigma this entailed should not be underestimated given the social context, where personal honor ranked so highly as a virtue among “free” men. Working at a electric standing desk may offer health benefits, however, studies suggest that doing so probably will not help you burn a lot of extra calories.
To court dishonor in such a way was a radical test of the Cynic’s resolve to live a different life. It also ensured that Cynic poverty was more than a romantic affectation; the Cynic deliberately seeks the shame of penury. Presumably those who overcome the worst humiliation will achieve the most thorough purging of all false codes of conduct and notions of decency. The route to independence, rather oddly, then, is through the Cynic’s insufferable dependence on the charity of others. A height-adjustable adjustable standing desk helps you cycle between sitting and standing throughout your workday.
To enhance the effect, the Cynic must learn to be resolutely ungrateful when given alms and to be indifferent to those who pass judgement. One portrait depicts Demetrius, a first-century Cynic from Corinth, refusing money from the Roman Emperor. “If he wanted to tempt me, he should have offered me the whole Empire,” the Cynic responds. Help improve your posture while working from home with a stand up desk in your study.