I wanna talk about Epicurus.
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18-12-2013, 12:01 PM
I wanna talk about Epicurus.
He's probably my favorite philosopher (if I can say that) and he helped me put some things in perspective. I wasn't directly in contact with his philosophy at first, but I got to know him through some philosophical talks with my father who admires him too.

The more I get to know what he stood for, the more I admire him. I don't consider him a great genius, as he didn't find an answer to any huge philosophical question, but his teachings have practical applications for everyday life.

I learned about him when I was still in school and he set some foundations for my worldview that only became stronger as I found out more about the world.
He was the first to offer me some comfort from the fear of death. He made me realize that I can't possibly be happy if other people around me are not, and not because I have to love them, but because it is natural and vital for the human being to feel empathy. He stripped the negative connotations off of the idea of pleasure by putting the extremist hedonism in a more civilized perspective, without ending up being too conventional.
He set justice (which is the most important factor for securing happiness for everyone) higher than love (which can be biased and harmful).

Some of these things are not new today of course, but at his time, I'd like to think it wasn't so common for a man to think that way.

I often see him mentioned because of his famous "trilemma", although it is disputed whether it is actually his. I feel there is some kind of contempt for the rest of his teachings and I don't understand why.

So, what do you like about him? Do you think he had anything new to offer? Were his ideas preceded by others' similar ones? Or, well, what is it that you don't like about him?

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18-12-2013, 02:45 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
(18-12-2013 12:01 PM)undergroundp Wrote:  He's probably my favorite philosopher (if I can say that) and he helped me put some things in perspective. I wasn't directly in contact with his philosophy at first, but I got to know him through some philosophical talks with my father who admires him too.

The more I get to know what he stood for, the more I admire him. I don't consider him a great genius, as he didn't find an answer to any huge philosophical question, but his teachings have practical applications for everyday life.

I learned about him when I was still in school and he set some foundations for my worldview that only became stronger as I found out more about the world.
He was the first to offer me some comfort from the fear of death. He made me realize that I can't possibly be happy if other people around me are not, and not because I have to love them, but because it is natural and vital for the human being to feel empathy. He stripped the negative connotations off of the idea of pleasure by putting the extremist hedonism in a more civilized perspective, without ending up being too conventional.
He set justice (which is the most important factor for securing happiness for everyone) higher than love (which can be biased and harmful).

Some of these things are not new today of course, but at his time, I'd like to think it wasn't so common for a man to think that way.

I often see him mentioned because of his famous "trilemma", although it is disputed whether it is actually his. I feel there is some kind of contempt for the rest of his teachings and I don't understand why.

So, what do you like about him? Do you think he had anything new to offer? Were his ideas preceded by others' similar ones? Or, well, what is it that you don't like about him?

I am also an admirer of Epicurus. I think we can blame Paul (Saul of Tarsus) for any negativity about Epicurean views.

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Science is not a subject, but a method.
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18-12-2013, 02:47 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
An Epicure dining at Crewe
Found a rather large mouse in his stew
Cried the waiter "Don't shout,
And wave it about,
Or the others will be wanting one too".

... I forgot who wrote it... Cardinal Sin - I'm not gonna go google it. I'm being evil today...

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(06-02-2014 03:47 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  And I'm giving myself a conclusion again from all the facepalming.
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18-12-2013, 02:55 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
I could easily call him my favorite. My own worldview is really compatible with his philosophy.

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18-12-2013, 02:56 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
I'm fond of Epicurus' trilemma. Thumbsup

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?

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18-12-2013, 02:59 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
(18-12-2013 02:45 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(18-12-2013 12:01 PM)undergroundp Wrote:  He's probably my favorite philosopher (if I can say that) and he helped me put some things in perspective. I wasn't directly in contact with his philosophy at first, but I got to know him through some philosophical talks with my father who admires him too.

The more I get to know what he stood for, the more I admire him. I don't consider him a great genius, as he didn't find an answer to any huge philosophical question, but his teachings have practical applications for everyday life.

I learned about him when I was still in school and he set some foundations for my worldview that only became stronger as I found out more about the world.
He was the first to offer me some comfort from the fear of death. He made me realize that I can't possibly be happy if other people around me are not, and not because I have to love them, but because it is natural and vital for the human being to feel empathy. He stripped the negative connotations off of the idea of pleasure by putting the extremist hedonism in a more civilized perspective, without ending up being too conventional.
He set justice (which is the most important factor for securing happiness for everyone) higher than love (which can be biased and harmful).

Some of these things are not new today of course, but at his time, I'd like to think it wasn't so common for a man to think that way.

I often see him mentioned because of his famous "trilemma", although it is disputed whether it is actually his. I feel there is some kind of contempt for the rest of his teachings and I don't understand why.

So, what do you like about him? Do you think he had anything new to offer? Were his ideas preceded by others' similar ones? Or, well, what is it that you don't like about him?

I am also an admirer of Epicurus. I think we can blame Paul (Saul of Tarsus) for any negativity about Epicurean views.

Paul? I had no idea.
I just don't hear a lot about him, although he is a well-known philosopher. It is also strange that his name was never mentioned in school or university (I had a philosophy class in both) even though I live in Greece.

I guess he too got the Christian treatment. Ignore those who express ideas against a god, embrace those who support the idea of a god (e.g. Plato).


(18-12-2013 02:56 PM)Vosur Wrote:  I'm fond of Epicurus' trilemma. Thumbsup

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?

Me too, but as I said it is disputed whether it is actually his so I'm hesitant to attribute it to him.

"Behind every great pirate, there is a great butt."
-Guybrush Threepwood-
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20-12-2013, 08:05 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
Are there some good online resources (books are good too) for learning about ancient philosophy/philosophers? Modern philosophers tend to have comprehensive books where they write all about a subject, but for ancient philosophers I just keep finding scattered questionably sourced quotes or biographies.

If something can be destroyed by the truth, it might be worth destroying.

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20-12-2013, 08:20 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
(18-12-2013 02:59 PM)undergroundp Wrote:  Me too, but as I said it is disputed whether it is actually his so I'm hesitant to attribute it to him.

Hitchens used to quote Aristotle, and when he did he said something like: "It's disputed as to whether he existed, but it makes no difference because the argument stands on its own"

Christians have always had trouble with Epicurus, even in the 16 century the lutheran and the reformed confessions go out of their way to rebut the epicureans. It makes you realize how strong his arguments were that a bunch of arguments within christian europe found it necessary to deal with epicurean philosophy.

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20-12-2013, 08:26 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
Xtians are in trouble as soon as they get away from their own bullshit story.

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20-12-2013, 10:53 PM
RE: I wanna talk about Epicurus.
No matter what forum or Facebook meme that mentions Epicurus there's always someone who says, "He didn't say that." or some variation when it comes to the god-evil philosophy. It's interesting to me because at the moment I'm in the middle of an email debate with a theist regarding the gospels and whether they were written by their namesakes. My theist debater asked what proof we have that Homer wrote his works, etc. I told her while she brought up a great example, the major difference is an entire religion doesn't hinge on the authentic attribution of The Odyssey, or the eternal well-being of an entire planet's species isn't at hand if an imposter wrote the works attributed to Homer, and people don't kill other people over his works. So, as for Epicurus, I take the Hitchens POV, the argument still stands even if an ancient Smurf said it.

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