ThinkingCat Level 01
  • Member since May 13th 2023
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Posts by ThinkingCat

    TauPhi - I love all the responses to the 30 word question and there is no right answer, but I identify with yours the most. Thanks for sharing.

    Cassius - that’s a good idea - I will do just that (read chapter one of both). Thanks

    Thanks everyone, A lot for me to think on and you are all bringing up some interesting points. I had an idea, if you were asked “what does it mean to you personally to be epicurean in 30 words or less?”, what would your response be?

    Is it right that there is no writings directly from Epicurus left?

    The problem I’m having reading around the forum is that everyone seems to have their own interpretation of what Epicureans should be. I understand this is going to happen but reading between the lines people seem to hold quite different views. Some people quite into physical pleasure for its own sake calling themselves cyreaniacs (or something like that). This doesn’t seem to fit with the Epicurean view at all and I’m finding it quite confusing and almost contradictory and rather go back to the source if possible.

    Here is a quote from Cassius which someone posted which is really helpful but it raised some questions in my mind:

    Epicurus was into "pleasure" and that can come in many ways, simple and luxurious, and the trick is to maneuveur through your personal context to focus on pleasures that do not cause you more pain than vou are willing to experience for the sake of those pleasures.

    I understand this and agree with it, it makes good sense but it got me thinking. People are willing to develop all kinds of what I would deem as unhealthy behaviours that give them pleasure but cause pain yet they would argue the pain is nominal and the pleasure gained outweighs it. I realise the key here is “what I would deem as” but I’ll continue. For example, someone I work with likes to do cocaine ‘on special occasions’. Before I go further, I don’t drink or do any drugs, my stance is life is better without either but I realise there will be people who drink on this forum (or maybe do drugs?!) so I’m not here to start a war with you 😂😂

    Anyway my colleague is willing to do cocaine and will go through the come down afterwards because he argue’s that the pleasure outweighs the pain. Of course at some point, he might become addicted to cocaine so the pain factor would kick in then. But he argues that he doesn’t have an addictive personality type and only does cocaine on special occasions. It could be argued in this scenario that he is being Epicurean?! Thoughts!

    What brought to these forums, is that I have started reading about Epicurus and have ideas of how I want to try and live my life yet it’s difficult to have these conversations with my ‘real life’ friends about this so I seek an ‘online epicurean garden’ here! I wonder what Epicurus would say about this and what he would think about my ‘online friends’ as opposed to my ‘real life friends’ :)

    I see, thanks for these excerpts. I can see why Christianity and Epicurians wouldn’t get along but I still don’t see how Christian’s would be responsible for portraying Epicurus as someone into excess? Also didn’t Epicurus only eat water and bread and sometimes a little cheese? That must have been documented somewhere that Christian’s would have been able to read, if we know this today.

    A serious question here - if that was all Epicurus ate, wasn’t he very unhealthy? I have read around this and it seems you can live on this for a while but ultimately you would become sick due to nutritional deficiencies (pretty obvious). Did he choose to only eat these foods? Did he have no choice? Surely he wouldn’t have recommended that diet to anyone? (Ultimately it would cause pain)

    Cassius - thanks for the reference to the thread that says Thankyou For Visiting Epicurean Friends. A really good starting point for me. I’d be interested in reading Norman DeWitt’s book. I had a look at the library but it’s not available, even for order. I had a look online and on Amazon it’s £52! I am guessing it is not often in print or something? I did find this book at my library though - Travels with Epicurus - Daniel M Klein. Do you or anyone else know anything about this book?

    Also thank you so much for the reading list. That is fantastic. I will definitely be studying, life being busy it will take me some time but this is a really great place to start. Very glad I signed up to the forums

    Martin - no, I just visit there every year. Have friends there and in the future want to retire there. Chiang Mai and other places in the north are my hangouts!

    Cassius - thanks for the clarification. I have been reading around and I found this (from Wikipedia - yes I know!) “Epicurus taught that although the gods exist, they have no involvement in human affairs.

    Would that be accurate? Do you know why he believed in any gods at all? I am an atheist btw

    This is really interesting, I love the fact that there are active thinkers on this forum. So from reading your posts, it sounds like Christianity had a big impact on dissolving Epicurean philosophy. I don’t know anything about this so I will go away and do some research but if anyone has anything to say on this, I’d be really interested.

    I do know that Epicureans believed in gods who had put things in motion but then removed themselves from our affairs and sat completely detached from humans - in this way they were almost atheist (please correct me if I am wrong on any of this) and didn’t believe in an afterlife so this belief system would definitely contradict Christianity where beliefs are about a personal God, as well as the whole heaven and hell thing and Jesus saying there is only one way to be saved.

    Hi Kalosyni

    Thanks for the welcome. So I have never really been that involved in philosophy. I joined an online debating group that were based in Thailand, probably now debating in real life again ( this was during covid) but I found it so difficult to keep up with what was being discussed.

    Somehow, I’ve stumbled across Epicurus on the internet - I came across him on the YouTube channel Einzelganger but the channel also covers other philosophers. So yes, I guess at some point I started reading more around Epicurus and wanted to be able to talk with others who are interested in him and some of his ideas. Not sure I’d ever call myself an Epicurean but I’m currently starting to adopt some of the ideas and interested in applying these in our century and modern way of life.

    Good afternoon everyone

    As I’ve been learning about Epicurus and how he taught a simple life of modest pleasures, I’d really like to know how being Epicurean got to be twisted on its head i.e being a person who is into fine and luxurious foods.

    I’ve been researching via google to try and learn how the meaning was basically butchered to mean something totally different but I can’t find much info.

    How on earth did ‘being epicurean’ come to mean something that Epicurus would have wanted to avoid?