Understanding Epicurus takes considerable effort, but not because the doctrines are difficult - they're not! The problem is that Epicurean philosophy has been heavily criticized for more than two thousand years, and most of the articles and commentary that have been produced over that time are by people who are critical of it and have no desire to present the philosophy clearly and fully. The only book-length work that even attempts to do so is Norman DeWitt's "Epicurus and His…
Welcome Friends of Epicurus! Thanks to those who attended our online discussion on April 21st. Our topic next time be: Chapter 7 of DeWitt's Epicurus and His Philosophy - "The Canon, Reason, and Nature." Please check this scheduling thread for details on date and time. The link to the online chat forum is here. Discussion outlines will be posted in this section of the forum.
is the place for friendly discussion of the philosophy of Epicurus. Our goal is to host a warm group of people who are studying and learning about Epicurean philosophy as a way of life, not as a matter of history or for purely academic reasons. EpicureanFriends
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If you have come across Epicurean philosophy in the past but been confused by commentators who assert - incorrectly - that Epicurus advocated an ascetic or passive lifestyle, you'll want to check out our table of Major Issues In Understanding Epicurean Philosophy. We're glad to help with your study of Epicurus - just ask in the forums! In the meantime, here is the advice of Thomas Jefferson on living an active Epicurean life:
A Feature of Our Forum - Follow The Advice Of Epicurus: Outline Your Understanding Of Philosophy
Epicurus' Letter to Herodotus: "Those who have made some advance in the survey of the entire system ought to fix in their minds under the principal headings an elementary outline of the whole treatment of the subject. For a comprehensive view is often required, the details but seldom. ... For it is impossible to gather up the results of continuous diligent study of the entirety of things unless we can embrace in short formulas and hold in mind all that might have been accurately expressed even to the minutest detail."
Thomas Jefferson wrote in a private letter "I too am an Epicurean" and drafted his own outline of Epicurean philosophy. If you'd like to see what Jefferson wrote, and get help in drafting your own, click here.