Ideas from 'works (fragments)' by Epicurus [290 BCE], by Theme Structure

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1. Philosophy / D. Nature of Philosophy / 2. Invocation to Philosophy
Slavery to philosophy brings true freedom
2. Reason / C. Styles of Reason / 1. Dialectic
Epicurus despises and laughs at the whole of dialectic
12. Knowledge Sources / A. A Priori Knowledge / 3. Innate Knowledge / b. Recollection doctrine
We can't seek for things if we have no idea of them
12. Knowledge Sources / A. A Priori Knowledge / 9. A Priori from Concepts
To name something, you must already have an idea of what it is
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 5. Interpretation
Sensations cannot be judged, because similar sensations have equal value, and different ones have nothing in common
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 1. Empiricism
The criteria of truth are senses, preconceptions and passions
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 4. Pro-Empiricism
Reason can't judge senses, as it is based on them
13. Knowledge Criteria / D. Scepticism / 3. Illusion Scepticism
Epicurus says if one of a man's senses ever lies, none of his senses should ever be believed
15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 2. Psuché
Soul is made of four stuffs, giving warmth, rest, motion and perception
The rational soul is in the chest, and the non-rational soul is spread through the body
16. Persons / G. Free Will / 1. Free Will / a. Nature of free will
Epicurus was the first to see the free will problem, and he was a libertarian
17. Mind and Body / E. Physicalism / 7. Anti-Physicalism / a. Physicalism critique
How can pleasure or judgement occur in a heap of atoms?
22. Metaethics / A. Ethical Ends / 6. Pleasure / b. Value of pleasure
Pleasure is the chief good because it is the most natural, especially for animals
22. Metaethics / A. Ethical Ends / 6. Pleasure / c. Types of pleasure
Pains of the soul are worse than pains of the body, because it feels the past and future
Pleasures only differ in their duration and the part of the body affected
22. Metaethics / B. Basis of Ethics / 5. Moral Responsibility
It was Epicurus who made the question of the will's freedom central to ethics
23. Ethics / B. Contract Ethics / 1. Contractarianism
Justice has no independent existence, but arises entirely from keeping contracts
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 2. Elements of Virtue Theory / c. Motivation for virtue
We choose virtue because of pleasure, not for its own sake
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 4. External Goods / a. External goods
A wise man would be happy even under torture
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 4. External Goods / d. Friendship
Friendship is by far the most important ingredient of a complete and happy life
24. Applied Ethics / C. Death Issues / 4. Suicide
Wise men should partake of life even if they go blind
26. Natural Theory / A. Heart of Nature / 2. Natural Purpose
Only Epicurus denied purpose in nature, for the whole world, or for its parts
26. Natural Theory / B. Concepts of Nature / 4. Time / a. Time
Stoics say time is incorporeal and self-sufficient; Epicurus says it is a property of properties of things
28. God / A. Divine Nature / 2. Divine Nature
For Epicureans gods are made of atoms, and are not eternal
28. God / C. Proofs of Reason / 1. Ontological Proof
Epicurus saw that gods must exist, because nature has imprinted them on human minds
28. God / E. Attitudes to God / 4. Atheism
Some say Epicurus only pretended to believe in the gods, so as not to offend Athenians
29. Religion / A. Religious Thought / 1. Religious Belief
If god answered prayers we would be destroyed, because we pray for others to suffer