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By Lucretius Carus, Titus; Konstan, David; Epicurus

Epicurus, and his Roman disciple Lucretius, held that the first reason for human disappointment was once an irrational worry of loss of life. what's extra, they believed transparent knowing of the character of the realm could aid to get rid of this worry; for if we understand that the universe and every thing in it truly is made of atoms and empty house, we'll see that the soul can't most likely continue to exist the extinction of the physique -- and no damage to us can take place once we die. This freeing perception is on the center of Epicurean remedy. during this booklet, Konstan seeks to teach how such fears arose, in line with the Epicureans, and why they persist even in smooth societies. It bargains a detailed exam of the fundamental rules of Epicurean psychology: exhibiting how a procedure in response to a materialistic international view may supply a coherent account of irrational anxieties and needs, and supply a remedy that may enable people to take pleasure in lifestyles to the fullest measure

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Cf. Cicero De finibus 1, where Torquatus (29–31) makes it clear—against later Epicureans who think that reason plays some part on our knowledge of the highest good—that pleasure is the criterion for choice for every animal; animals do not choose rationally. All that reason or logismos does, apart from getting rid of false opinions (198–99), is to choose among immediate pleasures with a view to the long-term pleasurable state (194–97): “È sempre dunque la ragione, e non la virtù, a determinare qual’è la condotta richiesta per conseguire il fine del piacere” (201).

Text according to Bailey 1949 unless otherwise indicated. 30 Psychology I provide the English prose version by Martin Ferguson Smith (2001: 35): It is comforting, when winds are whipping up the waters of the vast sea, to watch from land the severe trials of another person: not that anyone’s distress is a cause of agreeable pleasure; but it is comforting to see from what troubles you yourself are exempt. It is comforting also to witness mighty clashes of warriors embattled on the plains, when you have no share in the danger.

588a23–24); cf. Politics 1332b5–6 for human beings alone possessing reason (logos); also Politics 1254b23–24, where Aristotle contrasts human beings, who possess reason or logos, with animals and slaves, who obey their pathêmata; at Politics 1253a9–15, Aristotle specifies that “among animals, only humanity possesses reason, and the voicing of what is painful and pleasant is a sign of this: for this pertains also to other animals (their nature reaches the level of having the perception [aisthêsis] of what is painful and pleasurable and signaling it to one another), but reason resides in manifesting what is advantageous and harmful, and so too what is just and unjust” (see too EN 1098a3–4, EE 1224a26–27, Metaphysics 980b26–28; History of Animals 641b8–9; Sorabji 1993: 13).

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