See also: Epicure (homonymy)
Épicure (in Greek Ἐπίκουρος ) was a Philosophe Greek born with Athens fine -342 or beginning -341 and died in -270. It is the founder of the epicureanism, one of most important the philosophical schools of the Antiquité.
Life and the education of ÉpicureÉpicure, according to the most current opinion brought back by Diogène Laërce, was born with Athens, in the dème of Gargettios. His/her father, Néoclès, taught the Grammaire, and his/her mother, Chérestrate was magician. Épicure seems to have been high with Samos (it was born perhaps even there, his/her father being an Athenian colonist), then it came to Athens to achieve its military service there towards the 18 years age, before leaving to join his/her father with Colophon, in the north of Samos, in -323. It remained there of -323 with -321 and probably accepted there the lessons of Nausiphane. It gains then Mytilène where it starts to teach. Its Philosophie causes the hostility then (but it meets there its disciple and future successor Hermarque), and it leaves quickly for Lampsaque where he will live of -310 with -306. It meets there Colotès, Métrodore, Idoménée which will follow it to Athens. At the 36 years age, it came to settle in Athens which had just been delivered by Démétrios Poliocerte, and it bought a garden for 80 mines there. It passed the remainder of its life there, and died there in 270 av. J. - C. It is for this last period that it writes a very great number of its works and its letters; it is one of those which wrote the most in the Antiquité (300 works seems it).
The life which it carried out in its garden was simple and frugal, it was végétalien (it ate all the same at the time of cheese). According to Dioclès, quoted by Diogène Laërce, “glass of wine was enough for him, and he drank water preferably. ” The Garden however passed for a den of iniquity, but such charges seem libelous, considering the practice of the philosophers to launch doubtful charges against their adversaries. In the whole of the Histoire of philosophy, rare are the Philosophe S which will have, like Épicure, suffered as much from calumny. The image of Épicure became that of an irreligious person and one discharged, worse, of a pourceau.
The vocation of Philosophe came to him very early, at 14 years according to the testimony of Diogène Laërce, when, the reading of Hésiode, he asked his Master from which came the paramount chaos from where all things left which the poet in the Théogonie describes. The answers of its Master not satisfying it, it only decided Philosopher and without guide, as an autodidact (one will reproach him later for being praised about it). It however accepted the lessons of a Platonic , Pamphile, and of Nausiphane and Nausycide, nuclear physicists.
Its philosophy preaches the satisfaction (at its assets, of its emotional state, its social status) and the Community life between friends in a stable happiness. She is opposed with force to the platonism and in a way more measured to the doctrines of Aristote (of the fragments show to us in Épicure a conscientious reader of Aristote); as for the heritage démocritéen, contrary to an generally accepted idea since the Antiquity, the atomism epicurean is not a simple copy: indeed, Démocrite is closer to Plato and Parménide that of Épicure (see low the chapter on the Physique).
Its character, and influences it its thought
See also: Epicureanism
Épicure wanted to ensure the Immortalité of its name, by bequeathing the Garden under the condition which its philosophy was taught there and which one celebrated each month a festival in his honor. It made summaries of its works and advised with its disciples to by heart learn them.
But this pride of put philosopher on side, Épicure is described like a friendly faithful and benevolent, of a naturalness sympathetic nerve: “Its virtue was marked in famous characters, by the recognition and the piety which it had towards his parents and by softness with which it treated its slaves. ” It is Sénèque, a Stoïcien, which says its practice: “For me, I think and I dare to say it against the opinion as of ours, that the morals of Épicure is healthy, right and even austere for which deepens… I say that it is décriée without to have deserved it. ”
The Doctrine of Épicure had an extraordinary success, as well by the number of its disciples, as by the affection and the strong feelings of which it was the object: “The charm of these doctrines equalized the softness of the sirens. ” It gained Rome and all the Italy, with Lucrèce in particular, which is regarded as one of the rare poets (if not only) to have succeeded in putting Philosophie in worms.
The popularity of the epicureanism contrasts with the weaker diffusion of the doctrines of the other philosophers of Antiquity. The Stoïcisme appears held with individuals capable of a not very common discipline, and the Platonisme is diffused especially in the cultivated mediums. One sometimes brought closer Épicure to Jesus, while supporting that these two men had the appearance of savers to the eyes of the people; and, indeed, the consolations brought by Épicure are sung by Lucrèce like gifts divine, suitable to regenerate the man tormented by passions, the superstitions, the fear of the gods, etc This is why certain philosophers, such as Nietzsche, do not hesitate to see in this thought a kind of pagan Christianity, i.e a thought rédemptrice but without the concept of specific Péché to the latter Religion.
In spite of this considerable work, although Épicure had worked out one of the cardinal doctrines of the history of European civilization (another, the most opposed, being the Stoïcisme), there remain to us only three letters of this large and powerful philosopher ( Lettre in Hérodote , Lettre in Pythoclès and Lettre in Ménécée ), and some maxims (40 Capital Maxims and 81 Vaticanes Sentences) discovered for the majority at the end of the 19th century. Fragments of the Of nature ( Perished phuseos ) were also discovered with Herculanum in 1752 (at one time when the Morale épicurienne, fought a long time, returned in force).
Cause its deathHe died of a retention of urine caused by the stone ( without doubts of the renal calculi ), like Hermarque in its letters says it, after a disease which lasted fourteen days; Hermippe tells that then it entered warm water a moderate bronze bath-tub, required pure wine and swallowed it. After having enjoint with his/her friends to remind its doctrines, thus he died.
Here which was its will:
By this will, I give all my goods to Amynomaque de Batté, wire of Philocrate, and with Timocrate de Potamos, wire of Démétrios, according to the donation made with each one and registered in Métroon, in the following conditions: they will give the garden and the goods there contiguous to Hermarque de Mytilène, wire of Agémarque, with those which philosophize with him, and with those which Hermarque will be able to choose like its successors in the direction of the school, to live there while philosophizing. In the same way, with all those which will philosophize under my name, so that they preserve with Amynomaque and Timocrate, as far as possible, the school which is in my garden, I give it to them like a deposit, with them, and their successors, way which will be surest, so that these also in their turn preserve the garden exactly like them. My disciples theirs will transmit.
My house which is in Mélite, Amynomaque and Timocrate will give it to live in Hermarque and those which will philosophize with him as long as Hermarque will live. The income of the goods left by me in Amynomaque and Timocrate, they will use it as far as possible, by seeking with Hermarque what it is advisable to do to celebrate of the sacrifices birthdays of dead of my father, my mother and my brothers, and the birthday of my birth, according to the habit in first ten Gamélion, each year, and also so that the assembly of the philosophers of my sect, which takes place the twenty of each month, is devoted to my memory and that of Métrodore. One will also celebrate, as I always did, the birthday of my brothers in the month of Poséidon and that of Polyène in the month of Métagéitnion.
Amynomaque and Timocrate will take care still of Épicure, wire of Métrodore, and the son of Polyène, as long as they will philosophize and live with Hermarque, and of the same of the girl of Métrodore they will take care, and when the moment comes, they will marry it with a man that Hermarque will choose among its disciples, provided that it is honest, and obeying towards Hermarque.
Amynomaque and Timocrate will give them on my incomes what they believe their being necessary each year, in agreement with Hermarque. They will institute Hermarque co-director with them my incomes, so that all is done on the councils of this man, who aged with me in the study of the philosophy, and which remained after me as chief of our sect.
For my daughter, when it are in age to be married, Amynomaque and Timocrate will count a dowry to him while taking on my good what will appear sufficient to them, with the opinion of Hermarque.
They will take care also of Nicanor as I did myself, so that all those which philosophized with me, put their joint goods, took part in our familiar life, and chose to age with me in the study of philosophy, never miss the necessary one, as much as I will be able to do it. One will give all my books to Hermarque. If it arrives something at Hermarque, before the pupils of Métrodore are not raised, Amynomaque and Métrodore will take care of it, so that if they are honest, they have the necessary one to live, as much as it will be able to be made according to my incomes. And for all the remainder, which they apply all my provisions insofar as each one can be applied. I freed finally, among my slaves, Driven, Nicias, Lycon and Phèdre.
At the time even of its death, he wrote in Idoménée the following letter:
It is with happy and last day of my life that I write this letter to you. My intestines and my bladder cause me an inexpressible suffering. But to compensate for all these pains, I draw a great joy in the memory which will remain of my works and my speeches. I ask you, in the name of your sympathy to me and my philosophy, sympathy that you testified to me as of your youth, to take care of the children of Métrodore.
EpicureanismThe doctrines of Épicure can be summarized by what the epicureans called the tetrapharmakos (quadruple-remedy), that made engrave Diogène d' Oenanda on the wall of a gantry, as follows formulated:
The gods are not to fear; death does not give a concern; and while the pleasure is easy to obtain, the pain is easy with supporter.
The name of pharmacy indicates the finality of the thought épicurienne: it is necessary to cure the men of the evils which overpower them. If the presentation of the epicureanism in this article follows a traditional division of philosophy, its ultimate purpose will have to be always kept in mind.
Theory of knowledge (or Gnoséologie)
Philosophical contextÉpicure works out a Théorie of the knowledge which is based on the directions, on the veracity of the feelings which only guarantee that we know the Réalité. He also invents the Théorie prenotions: we form in us concepts starting from repeated experiments. These prenotions give a starting point to the human reflection without however resorting to the Platonic Hypothèse of a reminiscence of the understandable Idée S.
The question of the reliability of the feelings is particularly discussed by the hellenistic philosophers. Either the feelings are very false (thesis skeptic), or some are true and certain are false, or they are all true. The thesis skeptic is contradictory: it would be necessary to validate it a criterion higher than the directions; however the Raison is dependant on the directions because our concepts come from the significant experiment. The second thesis is also impossible, because one needs a criterion to distinguish a false feeling from a true feeling. But, for Épicure, there is no criterion apart from the directions, and a feeling cannot refute another feeling, because the directions are different between them. The directions cannot thus be contradicted.
There thus remains only the thesis according to which all the feelings are true. This point will be developed in the canonical one: the canonical one is the first part of the philosophy of Épicure, and it relates to the criteria (gun) of the Vérité. It consists of four obvious kinds.
- the Passion or affection (pathos), obviousness of the pleasure and the pain. The pleasure makes known to us a cause of pleasure, and the suffering, a cause of suffering. The pleasant one and the painful one are thus criteria of the Vérité not only of the passive state, but also of its cause.
- the feeling or significant impression : it is a passive state of the feeling, born from the contact with the things, and which makes known to us with certainty the active and producing cause. This state, indeed, by Définition (the feeling is irrational and without memory), cannot act by itself and modify what touches us outside; the feeling reacts only if it is excited by an external cause which thus exists necessarily. Consequently, the objects are such as they appear to us since all the feelings are according to this criterion also true: “To say that a feeling is false would amount saying that nothing can be perceived. ”.
The Error, in this Theory, will be explained by the Jugement of the Raison: the illusions of the directions are not in our Représentation S, but in what we add to it by our judgments, our reasoning, our memories, etc; but, in any case, it is impossible to prove the falseness of the feeling without making a petition of principle or an error of category. Our judgments apply to two kinds of object, those which can be confirmed by the experiment (the checking of the judgment is possible), and those which really do not raise of the experiment, like empties it for example, whose one admits the existence by a reasoning (the validity is in the sense that the judgment is not false, and can thus be held for truth).
- the prenotion (prolepsis): they are interior general designs with the heart, formed by the repetition of the Perception of a sensitive Objet, but which becomes former to the significant impression as a possible experiment, and which is presupposed in comprehension that we have of the Mot S that we employ to formulate of the questions. The prenotion is thus indicated by a Nom, and the pronunciation of this name causes the object which it indicates in our Esprit. This process makes any definition useless, since the Concept appears thus with obviousness. The prenotion is thus an image of a real thing from which it derives and implies as a such judgment of existence. These prenotions enable us to exceed our current experiment because they result from our last experiment; in this direction, they found all our judgments and our Croyance S.
Épicure does not describe the operation of the acquisition of prenotions; one can say nevertheless that it is a Faculté of the Esprit to renew certain mechanisms of the Perception by operating choices among the significant images (shows).
intuition of the reflection ( phantastikè epibolè your dianoias ), or “focusing” of the thought: this intuition makes conceive the universe as a whole, by exceeding the sensory intuition; it is the representation of an object external by the apprehension of its image. Perhaps this last obviousness was added by the epicureans to the first three obviousnesses of Épicure.
Scientific validityThe canonical one makes it possible to establish the criteria of validity of a scientific theory . An opinion is checked or falsified, it relates to or not obvious obvious facts. These distinctions make it possible to formulate criteria. For Épicure, these criteria are:
- the immediate Experiment sensitive: an opinion relating to a fact is attested by obvious things,
- the absence of against-testimony implies a certain coherence with the Phénomène S: the coherence of the assumptions on the invisible things and the immediate feelings, which makes it possible to represent the Théorie as a whole and in detail and to seize the connections between the phenomena,
- the fact that a theory is not currently refuted or falsified by the phenomena: “It not invalidation is the bond of consequence which attaches to what appears with obviousness an opinion on an invisible thing; for example Épicure affirms that there is vacuum, an invisible thing, and proves it by this obvious thing that is the movement. ”.
There can thus be several valid theories to explain the same phenomenon: several assumptions which do not contradict the phenomena must be held for true, because one can choose a cause arbitrarily rather only another.
Theory of the languageA name evokes a prenotion, there are thus for Épicure a relationship between theory of knowledge and theory of the language. For Épicure it is necessary to refer to the direction first of a word, related to the prenotion of which it holds its direction. This theory invites to describe the origin of the language for better including/understanding human knowledge:
- emission of sounds under the shock of the feelings; it is an instinctive and natural impulse;
- the language increases then by convention between the men who agree on expressions facilitating the social life; the names describe significant feelings and impressions.
- finally, of the men invents new words for new knowledge. Grammatical categories and new significances are employed to use language in the more abstract and theoretical way.
The language is thus not a human invention: it is the environment of the man and his physical constitution variables which are the source of the feelings, of the impressions and of the sounds which result from it. The first direction of a word is thus a natural direction, but this direction is then covered by the uses which the men make. To return to the direction first, it is to return to the same preconceptions, and thus to draw with the source of human knowledge (in opposition to the dialectical one). Épicure rejects thus at the same time the conventionnalism and the Platonic theory of the natural names.
The study of nature
The Physique of Épicure is exposed in the Lettre in Hérodote .
Épicure was a Philosophe, but like almost all the philosophers of the Antiquité, it was also a astronomer and a physicist. The letters which one can read today are primarily summaries of its physical and astronomical theories.
According to him, a right comprehension of the Univers makes it possible to carry out a happy life : “If the fear of the meteors and the fear which death is not something for us, as well as the ignorance of the limits of the pains and the desires, did not come to obstruct our life, we would by no means need physics. ” . The principle of Épicure is to some extent the following: better an explanation is worth which removes fear, that not explanation of the whole. It possible and is thus recommended to accept several assumptions on the cause of a natural phenomenon, rather than to remain in the Superstition. A good explanation is an explanation which makes happy.
However, in spite of what could seem limits at first sight, its physics is sufficiently coherent to be examined independently of the remainder of its Pensée, undoubtedly because it does not imply any anthropocentrism and that it easily does without the Existence of the God X (but Épicure was not atheistic, he should be underlined). Physical part of the thought of Épicure, Cicéron known as: What is there in the physics of Épicure which does not come from Démocrite? Because, even if it modified some points, as I said it a little higher concerning the variation of the atoms, for the remainder it says same the chose..
This Jugement crossed the centuries. However, such as it is, it is obviously false. Physics épicurienne is indeed closer to the Ionian thought which is rather positivist, that rationalism who triumphs then, with the Stoïcisme for example. The plurality of the world S, the infinite one, the negation of the popular Belief S, providence and the destiny, etc are not particularly compatible with the Théologie of these doctrines. Physics épicurienne is the exact one opposed stoical physics. Moreover, Démocrite is rationalist when he formulates the theory of the atom, and he does not grant any confidence to the significant data. Epicure, on the contrary, is based on the experiment and the veracious testimony of the directions. The two theories are thus expressed same manner, but not for the same reasons.
Fundamental theses of physics épicurienneThe physics of Épicure is thus wholesale a resumption of the Atomisme of Démocrite, that Épicure undoubtedly learned by Nausiphane, but it modifies it by introducing the idea of a clinamen , in order to preserve the freedom of the human will which is denied by the doctrines nuclear physicist.
The natural philosophy of Épicure is founded on a small number of axioms, where one easily recognizes the principle of conservation of the Ionian Cosmologie:
- nothing is born from nothing
- all can be born from all
- nothing cannot turn over to nothing.
The whole consists of an infinity of atoms in the infinity of the vacuum. Within this infinity, a world is a transitory organization, which is neither single, nor closed on itself (what is opposed to the autarky of the whole and wise in ancient philosophies). There exist worlds very different from/to each other, containing very varied living beings. These Ionian theses are not specifically nuclear physicists; one can nevertheless deduce the existence from the atom of the principle of conservation.
Indeed, reality in its totality is for Épicure made up of two elements: atoms and the vacuum. However, the atoms are the indivisible parts of the matter. The assumption of the atom rises then necessarily from axiom 3. If all can turn over to nothing, the universe disappears. The atom is thus the permanent reality of the universe.
The atom is:
- a reality invisible, eternal, immutable, inalterable;
- an indivisible but nonindivisible size (the sizes being divided into minima, the atom of it is made up).
It remains to describe this ultimate reality and first which is the atom.
The atom has following qualities, which explain the formation of the sensitive things:
- it has a form
- it has a Poids
- it has a Speed
The mode of composition on the other hand is called upon little.
These qualities are known as essential; the atoms are not identical units, but have different species: to train a man or a god, are needed different atoms. The atoms are thus the seeds of the things (spermata), and not only their components.
On the other hand, the color, the odor, etc, are accidental attributes which exist only at the phenomenal level relative on a subject. Nevertheless, Épicure estimates that this subjective Réalité has as much reality and is as true as the fundamental reality of the atoms.
The Atome S move in the Vide; this displacement is inevitable, since the vacuum is defined as what does not offer any resistance. The nature even of the atom is in fact this movement immanent and perpetual, directed for all the atoms in the same direction, with same speed, according to gravity, from top to bottom. There cannot be differences in speed, because the difference in resistance of the mediums is null: indeed, the vacuum does not offer resistance. To this universal gravity, the actual weight of each atom is added.
The atoms can also vibrate on the spot and be incorporated. They form increasingly complex bodies then. But it should then be explained how the atoms can deviate of their course, since this one being the same one for all the atoms, the latter can never run up. It is there that Épicure introduced the famous Clinamen (paregklisis), which is a spontaneous deviation, spatially and temporally unspecified, and which allows the atoms of entrechoquer.
This assumption has leave perplexed many philosophers, including epicureans. It should initially be noted that the Physique épicurienne is not deterministic; that then the clinamen is, according to Lucrèce, conceived on the model of the free Volonté opposed to the impulse given of outside. But, this being said, the clinamen remains manifestly a inintelligible Concept.
This point being admitted, the atoms can then be assembled: “The many elements, for an infinite time, under the impulse of the shocks which they receive and from their own weight, are assembled in thousand different ways and test all the combinations which they can form between them, so that by the test which they make of all the kinds of union and movement, they are able from there to group suddenly in units which form the origin of these great masses, the ground, the sea, the sky, and the living beings. ”
The PsychologyThe study of the heart belongs to the Physique. The heart is a made body of Atome S, and which has qualities which are Accident S of the made up bodies. It is a hot and subtle breath in which the thought and the affections are. Its connection with the body allows the feeling; once this destroyed aggregate, the heart does not test anything any more and is dissipated.
But there still the theory of Épicure encounters difficulties; vital qualities are not easily ascribable to a hot breath. The heart will be then an assembly of specific atoms: atom of breath, atom of air, atom of heat, and a fourth atom without name, which would explain the mobility of the Pensée. The heart, since it is a body, is mortal. This design of the heart, as the remainder of physics, is with the service of happiness: it is a question of making disappear the myths which come to disturb our thought in connection with our destination after death. With the eternal life, is opposite immortal death, the infinite time during which we are not.
In the Roman world, Lucrèce continued the ideas of Épicure by clearly centering them in a Matérialisme with the ancient mode.
Ethics and policy
Fundamental problems of ethicsThe Ethics of Épicure is exposed in the Lettre in Ménécée.
The atomism of Démocrite implies the negation of the free-referee. And if it is necessary that we act as we make it, we are not responsible for our actions. This is why we saw that Épicure had introduced the clinamen. He also thinks that we can control the physical determinations. That introduced of strange contradictions into its doctrines. But, contrary, the determinism leads to the absence of decision and refutes itself.
The determinism, explaining all by atomic movements, denies the explanatory role of a psychic causality of the belief or volition. However, although Épicure is nuclear physicist, it does not hold the determinism like morally unacceptable. It is thus necessary that the phenomenal properties and the significant impressions have a true causal reality, just as it me and the will.
Happiness and pleasureThese doctrines are often interpreted wrongly like a philosophy of “jovial fellow” seeking the pleasure with excess. Actually, it is about a philosophy of balance based on the idea that any action involves at the same time pleasant effects (positive) and effects bringing the suffering (negative). It is thus a question for the epicurean of sobrement acting sobrement by seeking the actions bringing the absence of pain, from where must rise the negative pleasure from this at-rest state (Ataraxie) but the full conscience of this ataraxie gets the supreme pleasure and the key of happiness is to know its own limits; this is why excess must be avoided because it brings the suffering. Without being a moral philosophy hedonist, this thought does not recommend the Ascétisme if it has harmful consequences.
Épicure defends a mixture of moderated joy, peace and self-sufficiency. The pleasure is the good, and the virtues are used as instruments. The life according to the pleasure is however a life of prudence, well and Justice.
The classification of the desiresThe Morale épicurienne is a morals which makes well pleasure the , and pain the Mal. To reach happiness (the Ataraxie), the epicurean follows the four rules of the tétrapharmacon :
- It does not have there to fear the gods
- It does not have there to fear death (indeed, death is the loss of the conscience, we are not thus any aware of our death)
- One can reach happiness
- One can support the pain
Épicure classifies the desires thus:
This classification is not separable of an art of living, where the desires are the object of a calculation in order to reach the Bonheur. To include/understand it, the atomism should be remembered: pleasure and pain, in this design, are accidents, they do not exist on the level of the atoms, but only on the level of the conscience. From there, it is natural to judge the pleasure good and bad the pain, since all the beings seek the pleasure. These are the feelings which indicate to us that the pleasure is desirable. It is a natural conscience, and our constitution makes that we necessarily seek happiness.
But, for the calculation of the pleasures, any pleasure is not worthy to be selected: largest of the pleasures is the suppression of any pain. Consequently, one must avoid certain pleasures, and even accept certain pains.
Épicure also makes the distinction between the mobile pleasures and the static pleasures. The static pleasure is a state body and psychological where we are released from any pain, happiness is with its roof. The mobile pleasure, on the other hand, lasts only the time of its activity. A life which follows these pleasures, like the cyrénaïques ones, consists in filling a bored earthenware jar. The mobile pleasures are thus actually subordinated to the static pleasures.
In the final analysis, the most important principle of the doctrines of Épicure is of living according to prudence when the pleasure is sought. The release of the disorders (ataraxie) is the supreme mark of happiness: it returns to the quadruple remedy; to live without fear, with the pleasures of the friendship and of our memories, by removing to them false beliefs sources of anguish and the pains avoidable.
Human institutions, friendship, gods
Human civilizationWe on the occasion to see how in the Théorie of knowledge, Épicure considered the origin of the Langage. This origin is at the same time natural and conventional. It supposes human institutions, which were born gradually from the history of humanity: “They are the things themselves which informed most of the time and constrained the human nature, and which the reason did nothing but specify then. ”
In the same way, the Justice is a human institution: “Between the animals which could not make conventions not to harm themselves reciprocally, there is neither justice nor injustice; and it is the same of the nations which neither could nor wanted to make conventions for the same object. ”
FriendshipÉpicure raises the question of the sincerity of the friendship. What a true friend? How to define the true friendship? For Épicure, the true friend is before all that which prevents the needs for the other, thus avoiding the disorders of the heart to him and giving access to him the ataraxie.
Gods“The gods are not to fear. ” Indeed, for Épicure, the gods are beings which exist in a permanent state of bliss. Their nature even made that they will never intervene in the life of the men. So Épicure fights all the ancient tradition which wants that the gods are jealous or rancorous. Consequently, since the gods are turned towards their bliss and their happiness, we should not fear them like being able to cut down their divine anger or punishment on us, we must just take them for model of happiness.
Died and philosophyNot to fear death is a mark of wisdom. Fear, one saw it, is especially the consequence of the superstition. The psychology of Épicure must make it possible to remove all the superstitions which refer to the heart: death is a complete extinction, it is not nothing for us. One should not thus leave the fear of ruining our life. Some arguments:
- to be dead is not worse than not to be not yet born;
- personal survival is impossible (cf psychology);
- the hell is a projection of terrors morals of this life;
- the well lived life is a exercise for death;
- the duration of our life is unimportant;
- a really completed life is not increased by an infinite time.
The desire of living is not rational; if our life is perfect, our achievement in the life of the every day will be nothing more if we are immortal. It is thus the quality of the life which precedes, the quality of happiness, and not the quantity.
In conclusion of this thought: philosophy is an activity which produces the happy life.
Épicure with Ménécée: That nobody, because it is young, is long in philosophizing, nor, because it is old, does not weary itself to philosophize; because nobody too early undertakes neither nor to guarantee the health of the heart too late. And that which says that time to philosophize did not come yet, or that this time passed, is similar with that which says, while speaking about the happiness, which the time did not come or which it is not any more là.
Titles of lost works
- Roman Epicureanism:
- Velleius Torquatus
- (X delivers);
- Lucrèce, Of will natura rerum ;
- , Of finibus , Of fato ;
- Plutarque, Placita philosophorum , Countered Colotem .
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