Apply the philosophy of the Epicureans in real life

manygoodtips.com_17.06.2014_IgTZjyuf4HiZDSurely you are already familiar with the philosophy of the Stoics in our previous article, which was completely trial and aims to interest the reader for summer reading something worthwhile with the subsequent change of his world in a stoic way. In the week we thought it over and decided to continue the theme of philosophy, remembering another great classical school philosophers of the Epicureans.

Who invented it

The Epicureanism is named after its Creator, Epicurus, an ancient Athenian philosopher, who founded his philosophy as grounded and realistic response to all the ridiculous abstract discussions of the time, so dearly beloved of the local philosophers. In a time when thinkers were arguing about whether the tortoise ahead of Achilles, Epicurus stated that we need to just enjoy the food, wine, good company, fresh air and all the pleasures that life has to offer. Philosophy, it seems, died with the Romans, but rather with the widespread dissemination of Christianity. It happened because the Epicureans denied creation of the world, were confident in the atomic structure of everything, was urged not to fear the gods, and assured everybody that the universe was always and was never created. Of course, all this was at odds with the Christian view of the world. However, interest in philosophy re-emerged in the Renaissance, thanks to which it reached us.

«Chetverochka medicine»

«Do not be afraid of God,

Don’t worry about death,

The benefit is easily achievable, and

terrible is easy to endure.»

These simple words is easy to explain the essence of the approach to life. The principle of «Tetrapharmakos» or «Chetverochka the cure» was a very strange response to all other traditional schools of thinkers. Philosophers of the time were obsessed with fate, the meaning of life and divine intervention, the Epicureans argue that life is an accident of fate and doom there, and if there’s something supernatural, it does not dictate anything to us. Also, like the Stoics, the Epicureans were convinced that the whole world is many factors that cannot be controlled. Instead of trying to preach pessimism and nihilism, the Epicureans answered all the danger of the world is simple and banal: «Why?». If the gods in the traditional sense, there are no traditional afterlife, so no need to all the time to prepare for what is not. It makes sense to enjoy the time which gave us a chance or divine intervention.

A wrong interpretation

The term «epicurean,» as a rule, is used to describe a generous, but prone to excessive hedonism person. For this is to say thank you the Roman Empire. Followers of Epicurus in the last years of the Roman Empire enough to say that they staged drunken, debauched Orgy that we usually associate with this philosophy.

What is actually taught Epicurus (and the vast majority of true Epicureans) consisted not in pursuit of eternal pleasures, and in an attempt to avoid pain and suffering. This concept they called «analgia», literally, this concept can be translated as insensitivity to pain. Everything negative you’ve ever done will come back to you and make you regret it. And there is no difference, or is it the abuse of beer after work for a long time or being rude to a dear person. Moderation in all things — this doctrine of the Epicureans: «Freedom is the greatest fruit of limitations desires freedom.»

No teaching of a single

The Stoics called commoners and even women are actively to explore the world, to learn, to master different Sciences, so that through them and the zeal to come to philosophy. The approach of Epicurus and his disciples differed from the followers of Zeno. The Creator of Epicureanism, by the way, is often accused of ignorance and illiteracy, but he didn’t care. Epicurus denies any teaching, if it did not help to get rid of suffering or to get closer to bliss. On the one hand, it was a bad idea: a science and discipline — definitely the light of things in the life of mankind. But if you look at it another way, it is possible to interpret the point of view of Epicurus like this: «You like to do? Are you happy? Well, do it!»

The denial of Sciences and arts was to ensure that the life and art of her «live» remake of the arts. However, it is worth noting that Epicurus advised not to get too carried away with these things because there is a danger to forget about life itself and the simple pleasures. With this doubtful words, you can and should argue.


Friendship was for the Epicureans the most important part of the recipe for a good life. The simplest pleasure is much better in good company, and the worst of the difficulties become a little sweeter, if their burden to share with friends. Life with all its chaos requires us to be a reliable friend’s shoulder. Without it, you can hold out, but it is much easier.

Some of the Epicureans believed that friendship should be sincere and alive. And to be sincere and alive we should not be ashamed to admit to yourself that you find joy in the most simple and despised of society entertainment: in the game of World of tanks or baths. While other philosophers have emphasized individualism, the Epicureans did not meet the society with hostility, knowing that they are the same part as everyone else. «Don’t do anything else, do not want to imagine» — the concept of «social contract» could not be better reflected the attitude of these thinkers to life.

How does this apply in life?

A hungry student or in difficult moments of life — a wonderful time to remember this article or school of Epicurus. The ability to find something good, for example, cheap Chinese fast noodles or a bad Internet which makes you to read the textbook on histology to your roommate — what you can find if not happiness, freedom from suffering. Come to think of it, every person fucked up his happiness, well, Smith.

«There is no pleasure in itself is not evil; but the means of achieving other pleasures bring much more trouble than pleasure!»- this phrase of Epicurus very well reveals the essence of his philosophy. You can argue about whether the right were the followers of this school, when it was believed science and art minor for the benefit of the individual, but the value of deliverance from suffering, no holding on to pain, stress and other temporary problems — the obvious advantage of this approach to life.

It is recommended to study the teachings in detail, and read Diogenes Laertius «About life, doctrines and sayings of famous philosophers».

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