PD 16 and Aristippan adaptability

  • Quote

    “Aristippus also instructed his disciples in a zen-like discipline known as “presentism”, or being in the present, as a therapeutic spiritual exercise. This virtuous practice was linked to the philosopher’s adaptability: he was willing to put less faith in his ability to control what happens in the future than in his ability to adapt to it. This would later influence defiant attitudes towards Fortune in Principal Doctrine 16 and Vatican Saying 47.”


    "Aristippus saw the world in terms of opportunities for pleasure and risks of pain" is another insight from the Lampe book. The word "opportunist" has negative connotations today, and also does not incorporate the meaning of "risk avoidance", but adaptability does.

    Principal Doctrine 16 ("Chance seldom interferes with the wise man; his greatest and highest interests have been, are, and will be, directed by reason throughout his whole life.")

    "Please always remember my doctrines!" - Epicurus' last words