Blessed and Imperishable?

  • Eugenios I would "head off" a possible direction that some (not necessarily you) would take this:


    They are self-sufficient, they are not buffeted by the waves of Chance, they remain unperturbed and choose to not concern themselves with the worries of the world.


    A Stoic might of course say that this is pure stoicism - by force of mental willpower choose to detach oneself from "the worries of the world."


    Of course I would say that is not the case whatsoever, any more than it is of essential importance to us as humans to , by force of mental willpower, choose to be concerned with the worries of ants.


    As to Epicureans gods living in the intermundia, an environment suited to them, or by them, to allow them to maintain constant pleasure which is constantly renewable to them without facing the inevitability of death or pain, I would say the essential characteristics we would seek to emulate are not significantly related to our "choosing not to be concerned with the troubles that ants may be having" but would again be describable as the best existence possible in the words attributed to Torquatus:



    "The truth of the position that pleasure is the ultimate good will most readily appear from the following illustration. Let us imagine a man living in the continuous enjoyment of numerous and vivid pleasures alike of body and of mind, undisturbed either by the presence or by the prospect of pain: what possible state of existence could we describe as being more excellent or more desirable? One so situated must possess in the first place a strength of mind that is proof against all fear of death or of pain; he will know that death means complete unconsciousness, and that pain is generally light if long and short if strong, so that its intensity is compensated by brief duration and its continuance by diminishing severity. Let such a man moreover have no dread of any supernatural power; let him never suffer the pleasures of the past to fade away, but constantly renew their enjoyment in recollection, and his lot will be one which will not admit of further improvement."

  • The main point for Epicureans is not if gods are mortal or immortal, or any word someone may find. Frankly, I do not give a dime about that. If there are some aliens in outer space that can live in total bliss and pleasure that it would be great for them. But my life is here on this planet, and I have one and unique life to live. So, the main point of Epicurean Philosophy is to liberate us from those fears that are produced with empty beliefs and the opinions by the many which say that there is god's providence that a god created the Universe, so here comes and the lust of immortality and the worse here comes the necessity.

    The almighty God provides, the multitude says, and that's how someone becomes a good andrapodo (slave) to his leaders, his god's representatives that all for me are mystic gurus and charlatans, that want all the pleasures for themselves, for making man going to his death empty-handed without living his life pleasantly. For this the first thing that they fought in Epicurus and his philosophy is the goal of pleasure and then all the others as senses, feelings, researches on sciences and all these that still keep to our days !

    Beauty and virtue and such are worthy of honor, if they bring pleasure; but if not then bid them farewell!

  • So, the main point of Epicurean Philosophy is to liberate us from those fears that are produced with empty beliefs and the opinions by the many which say that there is god's providence that a god created the Universe, so here comes and the lust of immortality and the worse here comes the necessity.

    Well said, elli !

    This has been a pleasurable intellectual exercise (and one I'll plan on exploring on my own for awhile) but, for the time being, I can't think of a better way to tie up this particular thread. :) Thanks!

  • As an addendum, I was about to start a thread on PD1 and gratitude. In researching, I found this thread and it seems that not only is my question answered here but that it also ties up a loose end in the thread.


    From Don in the initial post:

    Quote

    Being affected by anger as a sickness or weakness makes sense, but why would being affected by gratitude be a sign of weakness? One conjecture would be that it would show a lack of self-reliance / αυτάρκεια.

    The word "gratitude" seems problematic as, to me, one who is blessed would experience a general sense of gratitude. Denying gratitude seems quite un-Epicurean! The wiki translation in post #15 gets to a more accurate sense of the doctrine in my opinion: "indebtedness," or "favors" as they translate it in their first pass.