Kalosyni Event Coordinator
  • from South Carolina, USA
  • Member since Aug 6th 2021
  • Last Activity:
  • Welcome!

Posts by Kalosyni

    A proper attitude toward divinity has a very important impact on the way we live. But I will say as to the earlier parts of the article that no prolepsis or anticipation or logical deduction or image or anything else can in my world lead to a divinity which is totally inactive in its own sphere.

    I am going to jump in without having read the article, to hypothesize that perhaps the blissfulness (and happiness) of the gods as seen by Epicurus is because he sees them as having perfected prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance in a manner in which the virtues are used as a tool for happiness...and thus the gods are to be emulated. So that the virtues aren't end, but only the means to the blissfulness.

    This video is on the Death Cafe website, and brings up some "heavy" thoughts:

    External Content m.youtube.com
    Content embedded from external sources will not be displayed without your consent.
    Through the activation of external content, you agree that personal data may be transferred to third party platforms. We have provided more information on this in our privacy policy.

    For me, there is no way that Epicurean philosophy can be understood properly without always keeping in mind this core idea: that we are mortal and that we need to "live like we are dying" - because we are.

    I think that there are many ways to expand upon this, because we are also animals who have a life expectancy depending on our health. So we need to take that into consideration. If a doctor visit reveals matastesized cancer then that person is going to make different choices than a person who has potentially 50 more years to live.

    It costs money to do things like travel and going sky-diving (or other activities of choice) and so it's a balance between enjoying one's health and vitality (being active and doing things) and considering one's life expectancy. But when you realize what is most important to you, then you can determine the "opportunity cost" involved. And we only have so much time, so we have to make peace with that as well, since it is possible to have lots of projects that we want to finish, but that we may not actually be able to finish them all.


    In microeconomic theory, the opportunity cost of a choice is the value of the best alternative forgone where, given limited resources, a choice needs to be made between several mutually exclusive alternatives. Assuming the best choice is made, it is the "cost" incurred by not enjoying the benefit that would have been had by taking the second best available choice.[1] The New Oxford American Dictionary defines it as "the loss of potential gain from other alternatives when one alternative is chosen." As a representation of the relationship between scarcity and choice,[2] the objective of opportunity cost is to ensure efficient use of scarce resources.[3] It incorporates all associated costs of a decision, both explicit and implicit.[4] Thus, opportunity costs are not restricted to monetary or financial costs: the real cost of output forgone, lost time, pleasure, or any other benefit that provides utility should also be considered an opportunity cost.

    Source: Wikipedia

    Regarding the quote from Lucretius, Book 3 :1053 - that is a description of a person who is "lost" and feels restless, anxious, and bored. And that individual definetly needs to take a metaphorical drink of wormwood (rimmed with honey!). The wormwood is bitter and so is the contemplation on one's own death. And this type of person is going to likely need to "take the treatment" multiple times.

    Perhaps talking and eating cake at a "death cafe" meeting.

    Here's what is happening on the r/Epicureanism on Reddit...found their introductory description:

    When announcing/advertizing an in person meet-up, I am thinking that it would be important to state the basic underlying ideas of Epicurean physics in a paragraph with just a few sentences.

    This will make it more clear as to whom would want to join. There is no need to appeal to those who on the one hand have religious belief that God created the universe and is concerned about humans (and feel that everything is according to God's plan). And on the other hand there are those who might have a "new-age/visionary/magical" take on the universe (and which might include things such things as belief in multiverses, or other ideas such as healing at a distance and taping into the vibrations of the universe, etc).

    This basic paragraph should say: that matter at its most basic level of atoms and void is "semper existentia" (always existing).

    And it also should say: that we observe phenomenon and then look for causes, and we don't jump to any conclusions too early - and most importantly we only look at what is part of current life and actual circumstances grounded in reality, and with a pragmatic approach.

    This also brings up the question: that we seek to understand natural physics because we seek pleasure and the most pleasant life. But like the chicken and the egg which came first? (Over in another thread I started wondering if Epicurus invested more time into natural physics compared to ethics. But for the record, I am back to my original focus of seeing the ethics as being the primary importance).

    Just thinking that anyone who ends up chasing theories like multiverses will end up so distracted that they may never make it over to study the ethics aspects of Epicurean philosophy.

    Creating Seven Steps...a thread which I started some weeks ago, almost fell back in the vast ocean of this forum. By chance found it again, spurred on by the recent very good posting by Titus - which you can read his very good thoughts on ethics over on his personal outline thread:

    I definitely would like to include what Titus has written into the mix here in this thread and possibly for further development on materials - I really want to move forward the idea that I have for either a "7 Steps" or maybe a "Handbook on Epicurean Ethics".

    Some further thoughts reflecting on the above article on "self-centeredness". I think a better description of "self-centeredness" is a habit of focusing only one oneself. Everyone naturally has this trait because it is a self-preservation instinct. But some people have more of this than others. Also, in our current modern times, with the internet, digital books, and digital music we can easily entertain ourselves (by ourselves) without the "hassle" of negotiating with whom and what to do. So we can keep feelings of loneliness at bay, but at the expense of interacting with other people. And imagine how many people use their spare time in this way, so that very few people are available or looking to make new friends.

    I bring this up because perhaps some of us need to remind ourselves to take a break away from self-centered activities and reach out to others - and as PD27 says:

    "Of all the things which wisdom acquires to produce the blessedness of the complete life, far the greatest is the possession of friendship."

    Vatican Saying 23: "Every friendship is an excellence in itself, even though it begins in mutual advantage."

    The following article brings up the idea that to reduce loneliness you need to work on reducing self-centeredness.


    Research conducted over more than a decade indicates that loneliness increases self-centeredness and, to a lesser extent, self-centeredness also increases loneliness.

    The findings by researchers at the University of Chicago show such effects create a positive feedback loop between the two traits: As increased loneliness heightens self-centeredness, the latter then contributes further to enhanced loneliness.

    “If you get more self-centered, you run the risk of staying locked in to feeling socially isolated,” said John Cacioppo, the Tiffany and Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology and director of the Center for Cognitive and Social Neuroscience.


    In this view, evolution has shaped the brain to incline humans toward certain emotions, thoughts and behavior. “A variety of biological mechanisms have evolved that capitalize on aversive signals to motivate us to act in ways that are essential for our reproduction or survival,” the UChicago co-authors wrote. From that perspective, loneliness serves as the psychological counterpart of physical pain.

    “Physical pain is an aversive signal that alerts us of potential tissue damange and motivates us to take care of our physical body,” the UChicago researchers wrote. Loneliness, meanwhile, is part of a warning system that motivates people to repair or replace their deficient social relationships.

    Loneliness contributes to self-centeredness for sake of self-preservation
    Study finds positive feedback loop between behaviors

    Homemade Cheese, In Ancient Roman Style:

    Recipe: Homemade Cheese, in the Ancient Roman Style
    This simple cheese recipe would have been made and eaten by Romans more than two millennia ago.

    Currently filed under the Ethics section of the forum...Please see this thread on Philodemus on frank speech:


    I don't recall there being anything in the early extant texts (PDs etc) that gives reference to "frank speech" and in Lucretius honey is put onto the cup of wormwood (which would be to emphasize a pleasant way of speaking).

    A big part of classical Epicurean practice in the original Garden through the time of Philodemus and beyond to even Oenoanda appears to be the one on one consultation or counseling between student and teacher to correct mistaken views and actions. Philodemus outlines this practice and its implementation and importance in On Frank Speech.

    Is it not true that we have no evidence of what was happening in the original Garden regarding special consultation or counseling?

    And perhaps Philodemus could have developed the ethical aspect much further than Epicurus, and all while remaining true to the core doctrines. I am wondering if perhaps during Philodemus' time there may have been less emphasis on natural physics/science and more emphasis on ethics...but yet I don't know if that is true or not.

    It does seem that it would be good for us to be on the same page with how we understand Epicurus...and the question of what was philosophy to Epicurus?

    Can we take a guess as to the philosophy of Epicurus, and in his ancient school at the Garden, about what percentage of time would a student spend on "book learning" (in that time scroll reading) of natural physics/science and what percentage of time on understanding the role of pleasure and developing prudence? And what percentage of time was not spent on study but on actual enjoyment of life (and also brings up the question of work and how that would fit in to the schedule. Perhaps as a student you "paid" to attend by copying scrolls which were then sold to bring in money for the school, just guessing on that possibility).

    But my point is that I now think that a much larger portion of the time was spent on natural physics/science.

    A question toward the very end came up: "What is philosophy" in which Joshua and I gave "two different sides of the same coin" and so I just want to post further on that because there is both modern and ancient views - how we as modern people define "philosophy" vs how Epicurus defined philopsophy.

    Perhaps with my background of the study of art and psychology I am very much at a disadvantage compared to others here on the forum who have a background of the study of history, or law, when it comes to philosophy and grasping what it is understood to be (or defined).

    It does seem that it would be good for us to be on the same page with how we understand Epicurus...and the question of what was philosophy to Epicurus?

    The first two translations in post 4 seem to say that is it better to speak in oracles. And the third one says something very different: that is it better to be frank and straightforward than to speak in oracles - so this one would need a very close examination of the Greek words used.

    VS29 -

    "Employing frankness in my study of natural philosophy, I would prefer to proclaim in oracular fashion what is beneficial to men, even if no one is going to understand, rather than to assent to [common] opinions and so enjoy the constant praise which comes from the many." - Inwood and Gerson

    VS29 -
    "Speaking freely in my study of what is natural, I prefer to prophesize about what is good for all people, even if no one will understand me, rather than to accept common opinions and thereby reap the showers of praise that fall so freely from the great mass of men." - St. Andre


    I would interpret this as saying that Epicurus was saying a lot more than just "pleasure" is a natural guide. And I think "oracular fashion" means he was being very specific about what is beneficial and good.

    We ran out of time last night in our Wednesday night discussion, so didn't really get much on this one. Curious for thoughts by Onenski, Joshua, and kochiekoch ...and anyone else.

    VS28 - One must not approve of those who are excessively eager for friendship, nor those who are reluctant. But one must be willing to run some risks for the sake of friendship. - Inwood and Gerson


    If you are too eager you aren't paying attention to the risks. If you are too reluctant then your fears are getting in the way.

    TauPhi you had a good interpretation last night in our study meeting...I am trying to remember what you said?