43 of 49 people found the following review helpful
An Eye Opener about living with Eyes Open,
By A Customer
This review is from: Essential Epicurus: Letters, Principal Doctrines, Vatican Sayings and Fragments (Great Books in Philosophy) (Paperback)
Let me say at the outset that Epicurus is hard to understand because we have only fragments of his work.
Epicurus is important to people living in the third millenium because he realized, as most of us do, that traditional religion is not very believable.
In his time the Hellenistic and Roman world was about to fall into a morass of Eastern religions, spiritualism, and superstition familiar to third millenium people living amid Tibetan and Zen Buddhism, Wicca, and New Age.
Epicurus has two huge virtues that make him worth reading even now.
He is ferociously smart for one. Some of his insights about physical phenomena millenia before the invention of real scientific instruments are astonishing.
The other is that he is unrelentingly honest and rigorous. His premise is that we only know what we can find out from our senses and our reason. This is immensely liberating from all the causistry, tradition, authority, and sentiment of both culture and counter-culture.
To the ultimate rationalization for religion, "Well, it is a comfort for the simple." he responds, "Truth and honesty are better than comfort." He dismissed death as nothing, and proved his point by showing legendary courage in facing his own.
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Initial post: 23 Mar 2008 16:09:34 GMT
Last edited by the author on 23 Mar 2008 16:10:00 GMT
Not a great knowledge about Zen! Zen has NOTHING to do with superstition and is based on living totally in touch with reality. Nice try but think more before posting!
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Essential Epicurus: Letters, Principal Doctrines, Vatican Sayings and Fragments (Great Books in Philosophy)(4 customer reviews)