Read Discourses, Books 1-2 by Epictetus Free Online
Book Title: Discourses, Books 1-2|
The author of the book: Epictetus
Date of issue: May 17th 2004
ISBN 13: 9780486434421
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 958 KB
Edition: Dover Publications
Read full description of the books Discourses, Books 1-2:I find it near to impossible to rate a work of antiquity as I might try to rank a contemporary work. How does one choose subtraction over addition in ranking an artifact of historical interest? The Discourses of Epictetus possess such a special status and have greater merit at the start than contemporary works. By various measures, I commend the Discourses. One measure, mentioned above, is the historical measure. Reading the Discourses is time travel. How rare and privileged is it to see the world, a world of lore, through his eyes. And there is MUCH to see not only of what Epictetus wants to show us, but of what the keen reader gets to see of the Roman world in first-second century AD/CE. That measure includes the arc of culture, philosophy, literature, customs, arts, in short, the world digested by Epictetus and experienced by the reader at his side as Epictetus reasons on a range of topics not infrequently raised by questions. There is the measure of philosophy. The Discourses are the business of philosophy, of the reasoned and deliberate life, in this case of Stoicism. One can read the Discourses to learn about the Philosophy, but as much again about navigating life that profits the reader with practical and transferable insight into living wisely and the measure of your own life. Oldfather's translation remains excellent and helpful. The Loeb pagination and format of juxtaposing the Greek and English translation offers easy and ready comparison of text and rendering.
Read information about the authorEpictetus was a Greek Stoic philosopher. He was probably born a slave at Hierapolis, Phrygia (present day Pamukkale, Turkey), and lived in Rome until his exile to Nicopolis in northwestern Greece, where he lived most of his life and died. His teachings were noted down and published by his pupil Arrian in his Discourses. Philosophy, he taught, is a way of life and not just a theoretical discipline. To Epictetus, all external events are determined by fate, and are thus beyond our control, but we can accept whatever happens calmly and dispassionately. Individuals, however, are responsible for their own actions which they can examine and control through rigorous self-discipline. Suffering arises from trying to control what is uncontrollable, or from neglecting what is within our power. As part of the universal city that is the universe, human beings have a duty of care to all fellow humans. The person who followed these precepts would achieve happiness.
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