EpicureanFriends.com: The Online Epicurean Philosophy User Group

Announcements

  • Cassius

    Note to our valued regulars: please note the information here: Backup Communications for EpicureanFriends.com #Epicureanfriends:matrix.org

  • Cassius

  • Cassius

  • Cassius

    Epicurus from U469 Johannes Stobaeus, Anthology, XVII.23: “Thanks be to blessed Nature because she has made what is necessary easy to supply, and what is not easy unnecessary.” More quotes appropriate for Thanksgiving? Please add them to the Thanksgiving thread!

  • Cassius

    In the USA many of our friends are preparing for the Thanksgiving holiday. If you are traveling, be safe, and let us know how you are doing if you have any interesting experiences! Godfrey has started a thread for this here: Thanksgiving

  • Cassius

    New readers of the website may be interested in the updated FAQ answer on a proposed reading list for new students of Epicurus.

  • Cassius

    Episode 45 of the Lucretius Today Podcast is Now Available: Episode Forty-Five - Further Arguments For the Mortality of the Soul

  • Cassius

    Current plan is for the forum upgrade to be performed Tuesday Nov 24 at 11 am CET (5 am EST). You will want to avoid that time period for posting your dissertation on the final true and correct meaning of "anticipations" or "divinity!" The upgrade should be complete within an hour or two. It would not be surprising if some custom "styles" are temporarily displaced, so please excuse any appearance issues til we get the site totally upgraded.

  • Cassius

    Upgrade Notice: We are going to perform an upgrade on the forum software in the near future so we have access to the latest and greatest features the software can provide. We should not experience any difficulties, but it's always good practice that if you are composing a long document to keep a copy locally so that you will have it, rather than compose all of it it in the editor. Also, during the actual upgrade the forum will be placed in maintenance mode, so you should have no problem with starting a post and finding that the system has been taken down in the meantime. I will post here in the announcements a notice of when to expect the downtime, but I expect it to be short. More to come.

  • Cassius

    Happy Twentieth of November, 2020! (our monthly twentieth thread)

  • Cassius

    The Lexicon entry for "Techniques for Better Living" is taking shape and is at least now in outline form with a working table of contents. Much work remains to be done to create the content and organize it. Please feel free to insert your own entries, or if you prefer, post some suggestions as comments to this thread and I will work them in myself. Check out the framework here: Epicurean Techniques for Better Living

  • Cassius

    Anouncement of new masters-level writing competition: New Epicurean Writing Competition - Thanks to Michele Pinto For This Information

  • Cassius

  • Cassius

    Just received a friendly note from one of our past participants, @bdws , who is checking back in with us after a bout with Stoicism. Sounds like his fever has just about subsided so I hope he'll post soon and maybe we can pick up from him some good new "social distancing" tips for those who might get tempted by allure of "virtue" :-)

  • Cassius

    Episode 43 of the Lucretius Today Podcast is now available: Episode Forty-Three - The Mind is Born, Grows Old, and Dies With the Body

  • Cassius

    On days when the everyday pressures of life seem extreme, it's a particularly good time to remember Vatican Saying 78: "The noble soul occupies itself with wisdom and friendship; of these, the one is a mortal good, the other immortal." Full thread: Epicurean Prescriptions For Dealing WIth Troubled Times

  • Cassius

    As of today the Forum now has a new "Lexicon" feature allowing collaboration in preparation of key documents, such as lists of citations: Addition of the "Lexicon" Feature of the Forum

  • Cassius

    Reminder: "VS 41. We must laugh and philosophize at the same time, and do our household duties, and employ our other faculties, ***and never cease proclaiming the sayings of the true philosophy.***" That means, my friends, that even while we pour our time and effort into posting here, we ought to be thinking in terms of how we can turn around and use that effort to widen our circle of friends. The very act of participating here helps with that goal, but if you have other ideas on additional ways to reach out to others, please let us know!

  • Cassius

  • Cassius

    Please see this thread to discuss a potential format proposal for the end of the year: Year-End Possibilities - A Friendly "Debate" Show?

Welcome to our Online Community of Epicureans, where we study Epicurus, apply Epicurean philosophy to our own lives, and"strike a blow for Epicurus, that great man whose holiness and divinity of nature were not shams, who alone had and imparted true insight into the good, and who brought deliverance to all that consorted with him." All are welcome to read and ask questions, but only firm friends of Epicurean Philosophy in accord with our Not Neo-Epicurean, But Epicurean statement and our Posting Policy statement are granted full posting privileges, so here you will find a truly supportive community of Epicurean Friends.

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Recent Activities

  • JJElbert

    Replied to the thread Joshua's Poetry Megathread.
    Post
    Thank you! I am happy to have reconnected you with a memory, Elayne. I remembered Pickens County from your Dido poem.
  • Don

    Thread
    I was listening to this episode of the Hidden Brain podcast this morning:
    https://hiddenbrain.org/podcast/where-gratitude-gets-you/
    I found echoes of Epicurus's mentions of gratitude throughout, but the section on the "emotions" starting around 17:41…
  • Elayne

    Replied to the thread Joshua's Poetry Megathread.
    Post
    I love it! My dad used to tell me the story of Archimedes' bathtub Eureka moment 😃. The father of my children is from Benevola in Pickens County. Lots of Latin names for small rural towns in Alabama-- Romulus, for example. And of course, we have an…
  • Cassius

    Replied to the thread Joshua's Poetry Megathread.
    Post
    Wow that is great Joshua!
  • JJElbert

    Replied to the thread Joshua's Poetry Megathread.
    Post
    Note; I shared this poem with Elayne on her blog, and felt it proper to get her feedback before I posted it here. It is an elegy for her father, disguised within an ode to Archimedes.
    _________________________________________
    The Physicist


    The waters…
  • Martin

    Replied to the thread Welcome Bartleby!.
    Post
    Welcome Bartleby!
  • JJElbert

    Post
    That was incredibly moving. Very sad to hear of it.
  • JJElbert

    Post
    I've finally just finished listening to this book. Only two or three mentions of Epicurean Philosophy, which I still think is remarkable. So there's nothing good there, but on the whole I very highly recommend it. A truly fascinating story of a grand old…
  • GHB

    Has received the trophy New Users.
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    New To The Forum In The Last 30 Days
  • Bartleby

    Has received the trophy New Users.
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    New To The Forum In The Last 30 Days

Active Threads

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    1. Joshua's Poetry Megathread 15

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    1. Hidden Brain: Where Gratitude Gets You

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    1. Welcome Bartleby! 4

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    1. Condolences to Elayne On The Loss of Her Father 2

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    1. "The Rise and Fall of Alexandria", Howard Reid and Justin Pollard 11

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    3. JJElbert

    1. "On Methods of Inference" - Best Source for the Text

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    1. Is Romantic Love a Vainglory 6

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    3. Don

    1. Welcome GHB!

      • Cassius
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    1. Backup Communications for EpicureanFriends.com #Epicureanfriends:matrix.org

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    1. Long and Sedley, Hellenistic Philosophers, "Gods" 25

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    3. Don

    1. Episode Forty-Six - Conclusion of the Argument That the Mind and Soul Cannot Survive Death 1

      • Cassius
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    3. Cassius

    1. Journal of happiness studies article on Epicurus 8

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    3. Cassius

    1. Episode 47 - Preproduction - Death is Nothing To Us

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    1. Thanksgiving 4

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    3. bdws

    1. Scientism, Atheism, And The Admissibility Of Spiritual Experience 35

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    3. Don

    1. Victor Frankl 3

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    3. JJElbert

    1. Cleanup from Upgrade of the Forum 7

      • Cassius
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    3. Cassius

    1. Maximus of Tyre, Socrates and Epicurus 1

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    3. Cassius

    1. Welcome Luisfer! 1

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    3. Charles

    1. Episode Forty-Five - Further Arguments For the Mortality of the Soul 1

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    3. Cassius

    1. Happy Twentieth of November, 2020! 1

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    3. Godfrey

    1. Epicurean Music - Meditative 7

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    3. Philos Armonikos

    1. Responding To A Video Entitled: "Quantum Physics Debunks Materialism" - Collecting Arguments Against Anti-Epicurean Uses of Quantum Physics Theories 25

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    1. Simulacra, gods and the dead 36

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    3. Cassius

    1. Alternate Translations 1

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Most Discussed Threads

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    1. Discussion of the Society of Epicurus' 20 Tenets of 12/21/19 173

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    3. Mike Anyayahan

    1. Glossary - What is the Epicurean Definition of "Pleasure?" 125

      • Cassius
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    3. Hiram

    1. Reverence and Awe In Epicurean Philosophy 121

      • Susan Hill
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    3. Cassius

    1. The Neglect of Metrodorus’ Economics 81

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    3. elli

    1. The Notre Dame Fire 78

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    3. JJElbert

    1. Epicureans and the Ancient Greek Gods (Imagery of "Gods" / "Gods Among Men") 70

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    3. Cassius

    1. Gosling & Taylor, The Greeks on Pleasure. 69

      • Godfrey
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    3. Cassius

    1. References to Epicurus' Attitude Toward The "Place of the Sciences And Liberal Arts" 63

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    3. Cassius

    1. Nate's "Allegory of the Oasis" Graphic 63

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    3. Cassius

    1. Dead Reddit / The "Isms" Thread 62

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    3. Elayne

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New User Orientation



This is the place to study and discuss Epicurus with people who - can you believe it? - aren't just Stoics in disguise, but who actually support and promote Epicurean philosophy. On your first visit, check out this full home page, including the Not Neo-Epicurean, But Epicurean and our Posting Policy statements. Look around the Forums arranged by Topic. A good place to sample the latest conversations is by clicking Latest Threads, or simply start with our General Forum. After that, bookmark the Dashboard, so that when you come back you'll see all the latest postings and announcements. Other key links are the FAQ where we have answers to often-asked questions, and our Wiki, which features one of the best collections of Lucretius and other Epicurean texts that you'll find anywhere. Don't miss the forum devoted to reviews of modern books, articles, and video-multimedia devoted to Epicurus. Do you prefer a page theme that is lighter, darker, or a different color? Go to the bottom right and click "Change Style!" Thanks for dropping by and enjoy your stay - here our highest goal is Pleasure!


Also, we are continuing our on-line group discussions of Norman DeWitt's Epicurus and His Philosophy. Please check the announcements at the top of this page for confirmation of the time and date of the next session. Discussion outlines are posted here.


Please note our other ongoing projects: For our latest translations and research into the Doctrines, Sayings, and Letters of Epicurus, check our wiki.


There is also a great need for an authoritative online free edition of Lucretius' On The Nature of Things. At our Wiki page, we have two public domain versions (Munro and Bailey) and we are currently working on adding the 1743 Daniel Browne edition, which has the Latin text on the facing page of the original. In order to allow the reader to crosscheck the English translation, we are cross-referencing each translation the equivalent passage in the Latin text. If you have time to help in either of these projects, please let us know by posting in the appropriate forum thread. Our latest project is www.EpicureanRadio.com, a streaming service that we hope to expand into a full "Epicurean Radio Station." Check it out in the new subforum devoted to it!


If you have come across Epicurean philosophy in the past but been confused by commentators who assert - incorrectly - that Epicurus advocated an ascetic or passive lifestyle, you'll want to check out our table of Major Issues In Understanding Epicurean Philosophy. We're glad to help with your study of Epicurus - just ask in the forums! In the meantime, here is the advice of Thomas Jefferson on living an active Epicurean life:


"I take the liberty of observing that you are not a true disciple of our master Epicurus in indulging the indolence to which you say you are yielding. One of his canons, you know, was that “that indulgence which prevents a greater pleasure, or produces a greater pain, is to be avoided.” Your love of repose will lead, in its progress, to a suspension of healthy exercise, a relaxation of mind, an indifference to everything around you, and finally to a debility of body, and hebetude of mind, the farthest of all things from the happiness which the well-regulated indulgences of Epicurus ensure; fortitude, you know is one of his four cardinal virtues. That teaches us to meet and surmount difficulties; not to fly from them, like cowards; and to fly, too, in vain, for they will meet and arrest us at every turn of our road. Weigh this matter well; brace yourself up." - Thomas Jefferson to William Short, October 31, 1819.


A Feature of Our Forum - Follow The Advice Of Epicurus: Outline Your Understanding Of Philosophy


Epicurus' Letter to Herodotus: "Those who have made some advance in the survey of the entire system ought to fix in their minds under the principal headings an elementary outline of the whole treatment of the subject. For a comprehensive view is often required, the details but seldom. ... For it is impossible to gather up the results of continuous diligent study of the entirety of things unless we can embrace in short formulas and hold in mind all that might have been accurately expressed even to the minutest detail."


Thomas Jefferson wrote in a private letter "I too am an Epicurean" and drafted his own outline of Epicurean philosophy.  If you'd like to see what Jefferson wrote, and  get help in drafting your own, click here.


We hope you will consider signing up for an account so you can participate fully here at the forum. For a brief introduction to the orientation of this website, please review our Community Standards / Terms of Use , and check out our brief video Major Characteristics of Epicurean Philosophy.



A Note On Why This Website Is Not "Stoic In Disguise" -  

Many people who come here have been influenced by the alleged importance of a distinction between "kinetic" and "katastematic" pleasure. This argument is unsound, probably not of Epicurean origin at all, and can be very damaging to a proper understanding of Epicurus. To research this issue, start with Boris Nikolsky's "Epicurus on Pleasure," which argues that the katastematic issue was not introduced by Epicurus and reflects a later Stoic-influenced viewpoint. Next, read the chapters on Epicurus in Gosling and Taylor's "The Greeks on Pleasure," from which Nikolsky got the inspiration for his article. The whole section on Epicurus is good, but be sure to read their Chapter 19 "Katastematic and Kinetic Pleasure." Add to that the Wentham article "Cicero's Interpretation of Katastematic Pleasure," which highlights how emphasis on katastematic pleasure contradicts other core aspects of Epicurean philosophy.


Those shorter articles should then take you back to the best general book on Epicurus, Norman DeWitt's "Epicurus and His Philosophy."  DeWitt provides a sweeping overview of Epicurus which hardly mentions the katastematic - kinetic distinction except to point out how - even if one considers the categories relevant - Epicurean philosophy embraces both types. If you don't read anything else at this website, check out the articles listed above, and you'll see how important this issue is to a proper understanding of Epicurean philosophy. And if you are brand new to the study of Epicurus, be sure to start your study with DeWitt's "Epicurus and His Philsosophy."

Foundations of Epicurean Philosophy

For a detailed summary of Epicurean Philosophy assembled from the passages of the ancient texts, see the video below: 


The text of this narrative is available at the wiki here.


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