Draft Agenda for A First Online Meeting (to be updated - please make suggestions in the thread)
Remind everyone to keep their comments about themselves general, because we want to record this and edit into a "podcast" to be released for others to hear. Total length of the call no more than about an hour.
- Welcome and initial reading of text to be read while we wait for everyone to join - Opening of the Letter to Herodotus. For those who are unable, Herodotus, to work in detail through all that I have written about nature, or to peruse the larger books which I have composed, I have already prepared at sufficient length an epitome of the whole system, that they may keep adequately in mind at least the most general principles in each department, in order that as occasion arises they may be able to assist themselves on the most important points, in so far as they undertake the study of nature. But those also who have made considerable progress in the survey of the main principles ought to bear in mind the scheme of the whole system set forth in its essentials. For we have frequent need of the general view, but not so often of the detailed exposition. Indeed it is necessary to go back on the main principles, and constantly to fix in one’s memory enough to give one the most essential comprehension of the truth. And in fact the accurate knowledge of details will be fully discovered, if the general principles in the various departments are thoroughly grasped and borne in mind; for even in the case of one fully initiated the most essential feature in all accurate knowledge is the capacity to make a rapid use of observation and mental apprehension, and this can be done if everything is summed up in elementary principles and formulae.For it is not possible for anyone to abbreviate the complete course through the whole system, if he cannot embrace in his own mind by means of short formulae all that might be set out with accuracy in detail.
- Everyone in the discussion introduce themselves with first names, generally outlining their background and interest in studying Epicurean philosophy.
- Start discussion of the text - If it gets confusing as to who speaks next we can use the text chat feature to indicate who wants to talk next and then moderator can call on people who want to talk.
- After discussing this text ask for comments and ideas on what people in the call would like to see in future discussions. We can organize these for a while by going through the letter to Herodotus but we can also introduce features like question and answer sessions or discussions of how we use Epicurean philosophy in our own lives, etc.
- End with discussion of when the next meeting will be scheduled.
- Thank everyone and ask for any parting comments.