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

green numbers give full details    |     back to texts     |     expand these ideas


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 [Cicero]
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 [Diog. Laertius]
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 [Diog. Laertius]
12. Knowledge Sources / B. Perception / 5. Interpretation
Sensations cannot be judged, because similar sensations have equal value, and different ones have nothing in common [Diog. Laertius]
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 1. Empiricism
The criteria of truth are senses, preconceptions and passions [Diog. Laertius]
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 4. Pro-Empiricism
Reason can't judge senses, as it is based on them [Diog. Laertius]
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 [Cicero]
15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 2. Psuche
Soul is made of four stuffs, giving warmth, rest, motion and perception [Aetius]
The rational soul is in the chest, and the non-rational soul is spread through the body
16. Persons / F. Free Will / 1. Nature of Free Will
Epicurus was the first to see the free will problem, and he was a libertarian [Long/Sedley]
16. Persons / F. Free Will / 2. Sources of Free Will
Epicurus showed that the swerve can give free motion in the atoms [Diogenes of Oen.]
17. Mind and Body / E. Mind as Physical / 7. Anti-Physicalism / a. Physicalism critique
How can pleasure or judgement occur in a heap of atoms? [Sext.Empiricus]
22. Metaethics / B. The Good / 1. Goodness / f. Good as pleasure
Pleasure is the chief good because it is the most natural, especially for animals [Diog. Laertius]
22. Metaethics / B. The Good / 3. Pleasure / b. Types of pleasure
Pleasures only differ in their duration and the part of the body affected
Pains of the soul are worse than pains of the body, because it feels the past and future [Diog. Laertius]
22. Metaethics / C. Ethics Foundations / 1. Nature of Ethics / g. Moral responsibility
It was Epicurus who made the question of the will's freedom central to ethics [Grayling]
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 [Diog. Laertius]
23. Ethics / C. Virtue Theory / 4. External Goods / a. External goods
A wise man would be happy even under torture [Diog. Laertius]
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 [Diog. Laertius]
26. Natural Theory / A. Speculations on Nature / 2. Natural Purpose / c. Purpose denied
Only Epicurus denied purpose in nature, for the whole world, or for its parts [Annas]
26. Natural Theory / A. Speculations on Nature / 6. Early Matter Theories / g. Atomism
Democritus says atoms have size and shape, and Epicurus added weight [Ps-Plutarch]
27. Natural Reality / C. Space-Time / 2. 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 [Cicero]
28. God / B. Proving God / 2. Proofs of Reason / a. Ontological Proof
Epicurus saw that gods must exist, because nature has imprinted them on human minds [Cicero]
28. God / C. Attitudes to God / 5. Atheism
Some say Epicurus only pretended to believe in the gods, so as not to offend Athenians [Cicero]
29. Religion / D. Religious Issues / 1. Religious Commitment / a. Religious Belief
If god answered prayers we would be destroyed, because we pray for others to suffer