Ideas from 'On the Nature of the Universe' by Lucretius [60 BCE], by Theme Structure

[found in 'On the Nature of the Universe' by Lucretius (ed/tr Latham,Ronald) [Penguin 1951,0-14-044018-6]].

Click on the Idea Number for the full details    |     back to texts     |     expand these ideas

3. Truth / A. Truth Problems / 1. Truth
The concept of truth was originated by the senses
12. Knowledge Sources / D. Empiricism / 4. Pro-Empiricism
The senses are much the best way to distinguish true from false
If the senses are deceptive, reason, which rests on them, is even worse
13. Knowledge Criteria / B. Internal Justification / 4. Foundationalism / c. Empirical foundations
The only possible standard for settling doubts is the foundation of the senses
13. Knowledge Criteria / D. Scepticism / 3. Illusion Scepticism
Most supposed delusions of the senses are really misinterpretations by the mind
14. Science / C. Induction / 1. Induction
Even simple facts are hard to believe at first hearing
15. Nature of Minds / A. Nature of Mind / 1. Mind / d. Location of mind
The mind is in the middle of the breast, because there we experience fear and joy
The mind is a part of a man, just like a hand or an eye
16. Persons / G. Free Will / 1. Free Will / a. Nature of free will
The actions of the mind are not determinate and passive, because atoms can swerve
17. Mind and Body / A. Mind-Body Dualism / 2. Interactionism
Only bodies can touch one another
17. Mind and Body / A. Mind-Body Dualism / 3. Panpsychism
The earth is and always has been an insentient being
Particles may have sensation, but eggs turning into chicks suggests otherwise
17. Mind and Body / E. Physicalism / 1. Physicalism
The mind moves limbs, wakes the body up, changes facial expressions, which involve touch
Lions, foxes and deer have distinct characters because their minds share in their bodies
17. Mind and Body / E. Physicalism / 2. Reduction of Mind
You needn't be made of laughing particles to laugh, so why not sensation from senseless seeds?
21. Aesthetics / C. Aesthetic Judgement / 2. Subjectivism in Art
One man's meat is another man's poison
22. Metaethics / A. Ethical Ends / 6. Pleasure / e. Role of pleasure
Nature only wants two things: freedom from pain, and pleasure
22. Metaethics / C. Sources of Ethics / 2. Human Nature
Our bodies weren't created to be used; on the contrary, their creation makes a use possible
24. Applied Ethics / C. Death Issues / 1. Death
The dead are no different from those who were never born
26. Natural Theory / A. Heart of Nature / 1. Nature
Nature runs the universe by herself without the aid of gods
26. Natural Theory / B. Concepts of Nature / 4. Time / i. Time and change
We can only sense time by means of movement, or its absence
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 7. Strictness of Laws
Nothing can break the binding laws of eternity
27. Natural Reality / A. Physics / 1. Matter / c. Atoms
Everything is created and fed by nature from atoms, and they return to atoms in death
If an object is infinitely subdivisible, it will be the same as the whole universe
In downward motion, atoms occasionally swerve slightly for no reason
27. Natural Reality / A. Physics / 2. Movement
If there were no space there could be no movement, or even creation
Atoms move themselves
27. Natural Reality / D. Cosmology / 1. Cosmology
It is quicker to break things up than to assemble them
This earth is very unlikely to be the only one created
There can be no centre in infinity
27. Natural Reality / D. Cosmology / 2. Beginning
Nothing can be created by divine power out of nothing
27. Natural Reality / D. Cosmology / 3. Infinite in Nature
The universe must be limitless, since there could be nothing outside to limit it
28. God / D. Proofs of Evidence / 1. Cosmological Proof
If matter wasn't everlasting, everything would have disappeared by now
28. God / D. Proofs of Evidence / 3. Teleological Proof critique
The universe can't have been created by gods, because it is too imperfect
28. God / E. Attitudes to God / 3. Deism
Gods are tranquil and aloof, and have no need of or interest in us
28. God / E. Attitudes to God / 4. Atheism
Why does Jupiter never hurl lightning from a blue sky?
29. Religion / E. Immortality / 1. Immortality
Spirit is mortal
An immortal mind couldn't work harmoniously with a mortal body
For a separated spirit to remain sentient it would need sense organs attached to it
29. Religion / E. Immortality / 2. Soul
The mind is very small smooth particles, which evaporate at death
If spirit is immortal and enters us at birth, why don't we remember a previous existence?