February 8 - Avoid competition and intense emotional...

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February 8, 2008 Lucretius – On the Nature of the Universe (De Rerum Naturam) o Philosophical poem o Life of Lucretius (don’t know a whole lot) “Even an attractive woman may persuade you to live with her by her trimness and obliging ways; even without divine assistance habit can make you love her, like water dripping on a stone.” o In poem: life’s big questions What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? Where did we come from? Is there a god? After life? What are things made of? His answers were not those from society o Epicurean philosophy (Epicureus) From Greece Most important thing in life: pleasure, but not in excess Pleasure/happiness cause by freedom from disturbance (upset) World explained by natural cause, not gods (don’t need to keep them happy) Understanding the universe leads to no anxiety Soul dies with body
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Unformatted text preview: Avoid competition and intense emotional commitments (cause jealousy/failure) o Venus and Mars Ancestors of the Roman people Kind of opposite of Epicurean philosophy o Opposition to institutional religion Not just “don’t like” but viewed as “bad” Sacrifice of Iphigenia (Trojan War) • Daughter of Agamemnon • Greeks ready to leave, no wind to travel by • Agamemnon offended a god, needs a virgin sacrifice for the wind – namely his daughter • Lies, says she’ll marry Achilles • Innocent girl killed because of institutional religion o Fear of death’s torments Dispels worry of bloodless/soulless “grey” existence o Science/Natural laws Atoms and swerving of atoms (free motion explains free will) Things diminish, sum stays the same...
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