Slide 1 – Epicurus
With your permission, I will begin. Today I would like to speak to you about a greek philosopher who left a mark in the history of this subject – Epicurus.
Slide 2 – Index
My presentation will consist of several parts. I will start with a small introduction and then tell you more about this philosophy. You will learn about what was considered the pleasures of life and what were the true virtues as seen by this philosopher. In the end I would like to challenge you to a discussion about a quote of Epicurus. And of course give you places to look for more information.
Slide 3 - Introduction
Epicurus was an ancient Greek philosopher born on the island of Samos as a citizen of Athens. It was a time of much political turmoil and the boy even years later showed contempt for politics. In general, he believed that neither public, nor political life can guarantee tranquility. His house was his comfort zone. He made it a place of simplicity and pleasure. This was where everyone came to have a nice conversation, a simple meal and a nice walk – the simple pleasures of life. Epicurus urged others to control their desires, as they are what leads us from simplicity and complicate our lives.
Slide 4 – Pleasures of Life
Epicurus believed that a simple lifestyle is the secret of happiness. “Ordinary” joy, which is at times so easy to obtain can be the most memorable and lift our spirit to the top.
Today’s society is a materialistic one. Everyone is keen on getting more and better things. These things often only make our life more complicated, high paced and stressful. This greed philosopher urged people to analyze what they buy. The things we obtain must make our life easier and by no means harder.
Such simple rewards that last a life time are a spare diet, good conversation, lasting friendships, shelter, soft rain, sun, and happy times. And all of these “things” are free. All are more or less easy to obtain if we just take the time to do it.
Slide 5 – True Virtues
Among true virtues Epicurus sees prudence as the most important of them all. There is no denying the fact that pleasure is the goal of life. However, one must be smart in trying to achieve it. It is vital to understand whether each step that you take will bring you pleasure or not.
That is why it is crucial to understand the difference between need and want. There are two types of desired: natural and vain. Even the natural desires can be divided into essential and trivial. It should be one’s goal to be able to stick only to essential desires and never forget to keep looking around. (McCarthy) Be open. Simple joys are all around us. They practically flow about and can be easily obtained if you remember what they are.
Slide 6 – Food for though
Let’s take a look at this question and discuss it among ourselves.
Thank you for your attention.
1. Marietta McCarthy. How philosophy can change your life. 10 ideas that matter most.
2. Epicurus quotes. http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/e/epicurus.html 4 Sept. 2011