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Epicurus Paper - Essay Example

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Name Professor Subject/course Date Epicurus philosophical ideas Epicurus was an ancient Greek philosopher who had a number of philosophical thoughts that he taught at his school – School of Epicureanism. His thoughts were related to a number of factors such as: happiness; life; ethics; death; religion; science; peace; freedom from fear; pain; friends…
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Epicurus Paper

As a result, these good and bad aspects in life are what contribute to pleasure and pain respectively. Epicurus went ahead to describe what exactly pain and please were in his understanding. He mentioned that a person may decide to choose between pain and pleasure. As a result, if an individual selects pleasure over pain in their lives, then they are prone to endure only the pleasurable things in life. Else, an individual will only endure all the bad and/ or sad events in their lives. It should be noted that Epicurus was advocating for pleasure in both dynamics- that is pleasure in the body as well as the mind together with satiety and freedom from fear of death (Epicurus 128-129). As cited from the Epicurus Reader, pleasure in happiness was all up to the individual. “Do you want to be happy? Of course you do! Then what’s standing in your way? Your happiness is entirely up to you. This has been revealed to us by a man of divine serenity and wisdom who spent his life among us, and showed us, by his personal example and by his teaching, the path to redemption from unhappiness” (Hutchinson, “Introduction to The Epicurus Reader”). Based on that, he added that the only aspect that could hinder our happiness was based on our feelings. For example, if an individual was extremely nervous or anxious, then their pleasure in happiness would be distorted. Another example that was projected by Epicurus was based on rich people and healthy people. That is, if a rich person gets extremely anxious to be richer, then that individual will lack happiness and pleasure in their life since their mind is optimally focussed on what is not readily available in their lives. In addition to that, if an individual would get anxious about their eating habits as well as their health, then they could as well get sick, all because of what their mind is focussed on. The best advice that Epicurus put forward was that people should enjoy what they currently have and be glad that they do have it. This is due to the fact that there are those who have nothing in their lives and they are extremely happy for whatever little it is that they have – “You can't be happy in this life if you're worried about the next life... But you can be happy if you believe in the four basic truths of Epicureanism: there are no divine beings which threaten us; there is no next life; what we actually need is easy to get; what makes us suffer is easy to put up with.” As a result, Epicurus terms this as the “Epicurean remedy” to all the problems that people face in their life (Hutchinson, “Introduction to The Epicurus Reader”). According to Yapijakis (2009), the same concept of pleasure and pain was also introduced into the field of medicine. This was done by Asclepiades of Bithynia who was an Epicurean doctor and Greek medicine practitioner. For example, for individuals who were insane, Asclepiades of Bithynia proposed that a natural cure to their illness would be to treat them in a human manner as compared to showing such people acts of suffering and pain by treating them badly. Through such humane acts, insane patients would have the feeling of pleasure and happiness. This methodology by Asclepiades of Bithynia turned out to be a success and a major solution to a number of illnesses, mental illnesses being one of them. As a result, he became one ... Read More
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