Welcome Will1776!

  • Note: I just happened to be looking at the users online list and I noticed a name that I didn't recognize and don't think we welcomed back in May. So please excuse me Will1776 for not acknowledging you earlier. So in the spirit of better late than never:

    Welcome Will1776

    This is the place for students of Epicurus to coordinate their studies and work together to promote the philosophy of Epicurus. Please remember that all posting here is subject to our Community Standards / Rules of the Forum our Not Neo-Epicurean, But Epicurean and our Posting Policy statements and associated posts.

    Please understand that the leaders of this forum are well aware that many fans of Epicurus may have sincerely-held views of what Epicurus taught that are incompatible with the purposes and standards of this forum. This forum is dedicated exclusively to the study and support of people who are committed to classical Epicurean views. As a result, this forum is not for people who seek to mix and match some Epicurean views with positions that are inherently inconsistent with the core teachings of Epicurus.

    All of us who are here have arrived at our respect for Epicurus after long journeys through other philosophies, and we do not demand of others what we were not able to do ourselves. Epicurean philosophy is very different from other viewpoints, and it takes time to understand how deep those differences really are. That's why we have membership levels here at the forum which allow for new participants to discuss and develop their own learning, but it's also why we have standards that will lead in some cases to arguments being limited, and even participants being removed, when the purposes of the community require it. Epicurean philosophy is not inherently democratic, or committed to unlimited free speech, or devoted to any other form of organization other than the pursuit by our community of happy living through the principles of Epicurean philosophy.

    One way you can be most assured of your time here being productive is to tell us a little about yourself and personal your background in reading Epicurean texts. It would also be helpful if you could tell us how you found this forum, and any particular areas of interest that you have which would help us make sure that your questions and thoughts are addressed.

    In that regard we have found over the years that there are a number of key texts and references which most all serious students of Epicurus will want to read and evaluate for themselves. Those include the following.

    1. "Epicurus and His Philosophy" by Norman DeWitt
    2. "A Few Days In Athens" by Frances Wright
    3. The Biography of Epicurus by Diogenes Laertius. This includes the surviving letters of Epicurus, including those to Herodotus, Pythocles, and Menoeceus.
    4. "On The Nature of Things" - by Lucretius (a poetic abridgement of Epicurus' "On Nature"
    5. "Epicurus on Pleasure" - By Boris Nikolsky
    6. The chapters on Epicurus in Gosling and Taylor's "The Greeks On Pleasure."
    7. Cicero's "On Ends" - Torquatus Section
    8. Cicero's "On The Nature of the Gods" - Velleius Section
    9. The Inscription of Diogenes of Oinoanda - Martin Ferguson Smith translation
    10. A Few Days In Athens" - Frances Wright
    11. Lucian Core Texts on Epicurus: (1) Alexander the Oracle-Monger, (2) Hermotimus
    12. Philodemus "On Methods of Inference" (De Lacy version, including his appendix on relationship of Epicurean canon to Aristotle and other Greeks)

    It is by no means essential or required that you have read these texts before participating in the forum, but your understanding of Epicurus will be much enhanced the more of these you have read.

    And time has also indicated to us that if you can find the time to read one book which will best explain classical Epicurean philosophy, as opposed to most modern "eclectic" interpretations of Epicurus, that book is Norman DeWitt's Epicurus And His Philosophy.

    Welcome to the forum!



  • Thank you!

    I value and enjoy the epicureanfriends.com. I am particularly reveling in the Lucretius podcast. I have previously read and listened to the poem but following along with y’all has taken my understanding and appreciation to a whole nother level. You, Elaine, Charles and Martin have been such a treat!

    I’m on episode 41 and looking forward to each and ever episode to come.

    Thank you all.

  • Good to hear! One thing we need to do is go back through and make a better index and mark the dates when we had some personnel changes. We made it through more than half the book with most of the original team intact, but we did lose Julie and Elayne along the way and we would love to have them back or at least supplement their female perspective. Right now it's mainly Martin and myself with the addition of Don, who I am happy to say is doing a great job.

    We're nearing the end of the book now so we probably won't push too hard to add anyone else now, but I've long seen this podcast as just a start toward the future, so anyone who takes the time to listen to the existing series and would like to participate in the future I am sure we will welcome with open arms into our next project.

    But rest assured - in NONE of the episodes do you have to listen to me alone! You are right to note that discussion and back and forth are key to the helpfulness of the podcast!

  • am particularly reveling in the Lucretius podcast. I have previously read and listened to the poem but following along with y’all has taken my understanding and appreciation to a whole nother level.

    in regard to that I have long thought that the main benefit of what we were doing is not to come across as experts (which we are not) but to come across as "normal people" like those we hope are listening. The academics can take care of themselves, but I am convinced that Epicurus "had a heart" for normal people even more so than the academics.

    There are reams of academic papers on Epicurus readily available on the internet, but not too many places where people are actually focusing on a sympathetic reading of Epicurus as their main project.