Episode One Hundred Four - More Torquatus and a Question: Was The Ancient Epicurean Movement A Cult?

  • I very much want to finish our series on Torquatus as efficiently as we can before we add a regular feature to the weekly podcast of answering one or more questions because I think the Torquatus material is a great outline of the most important points that we need to cover as an overview of the basics. We ought to be in the "home stretch" now but it will still take maybe as much as two months to finish - we will see.

    In the meantime if questions get posed that are so basic and so frequently asked, like the cult question, we can find a way to work something in.

    Do just let us know somewhere if there is a burning issue that needs more than what we do here in threads at the forum.

    Cause frankly almost any question that comes up will probably fit within one of the topics Torquatus is about to list in outline form.

  • Great podcast! It is often suggested that we could think of the senses as "honest witnesses" of the outside world and our brain as the judge sitting inside the courtroom. Sceptics do not trust the witnesses, Epicureans do trust the witnesses. An Epicurean understands that the witnesses (i.e. the senses) honestly report to him what they experienced, but what they experienced may not totally correspond to what actually happened. The larger number of (honest) witnesses the Epicurean judge has, the more accurate his impression of reality will be.

    If you think the honest witnesses are liars you will have no ability to find out the truth, if you think the honest witnesses are completely accurate you will have a false impression of the truth -- if you understand the witnesses are honest, but flawed, you can increase your accuracy by generalizing the testimony of the witnesses.

    Mελετᾶν οὖν χρὴ τὰ ποιοῦντα τὴν εὐδαιμονίαν.

    It is necessary to study what produces wellbeing.

  • That is a very eloquent statement of the point, and worded like that it seems so obvious and clear that no one in their right minds could ever doubt it. Thank you!