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Topics in Ancient Greek and Roman Philosophy

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The Ideas of Aristotle on the Pursuit of Happiness
Happiness Happiness… What is this? I mean… It is an unalienable right given to us by our founding fathers. But the pursuit of happiness isn’t just something that was thought up out of nowhere when America was founded. Aristotle, however, presents a theory of happiness that is still relevant today, over 2,300 years later. T...
413 words
2 pages
A Comparison of Plato's and Aristotle's Natural Philosophy
Plato’s Natural Philosophy vs Aristotle’s When it comes to the power of the mind and where truth about the natural world lie Aristotle and Plato have various views of these matters. Plato mentored Aristotle for twenty years, but of course some controversy was stirred by his pupil. At that time was known to be true was word...
1,653 words
5 pages
The Philosophical Idea of Romantic Love (Eros) by Plato and Irving Singer
Eros: Plato and Singer Romantic love (eros) became a subject of wide prominence following the emergent practice and reverence of courtly love in the latter half of the Middle Ages. Prior to this, the topic of choice had been the love between friends, otherwise known as philia. Many definitions, explanations, and analyses o...
1,739 words
6 pages
Empedocles' Explanation of the Four Elements
Empedocles and the Four Elements Empedocles explained the cosmos through the four elements earth, fire, water, air, which he referred to as roots. These four roots would come together in different arrangements and proportions to create the cosmos. Furthermore, these roots are acted upon by two separate catalysts, love and...
282 words
2 pages
An Analysis of Lactantius's Writings on What an Emperor's Behavior Should Be Like
Deaths of the Persecutor This reading is commonly read as a Christian text. However, Lactantius’ writings can also be portrayed as a Roman piece of writing. In the reading Lactantius provides how he thinks a legitimate Roman emperor should behave. Lacantius believes a legitimate Roman emperor should; allow Christians to op...
568 words
2 pages
A Review of Aristotle's Theory of Casualties
Aristotle believed that all things in the universe have a purpose and goal for which they are made for and work toward. Aristotle’s Theory of Causality, or Four Causes, is a principle in which Aristotle claims there are four fundamental causes of change and movement that answers the question of ‘why?’. Because substances ha...
527 words
2 pages
The Pre-Socratic Philosophers and the Concept of the Nature of the World and Human Life
Pre-Socratic philosophers began to be involved in speculative
thinking, striving to understand the world in natural terms of how things
are, what they're made up of, and how they function. They rejected
traditional mythological and supernatural explanations of the phenomena
they saw, embracing rational and more nature-relat...
2,112 words
3 pages
The Metaphysical Position of Humans Portrayed in Plato's Allegory of the Cave and His Solution for Freeing Men from the Repetitive Cycle of Living
Plato’s Allegory of the Cave is a powerful passage that portrays the metaphysical position of man using a clever metaphor. This allegory depicts how humans are trapped in the mundane of everyday life. Their daily reality remains unquestioned and go through their days without thought. The myth also reveals Plato’s solution t...
2,123 words
7 pages
The Path to Achieving Happiness According to Epicurus
In regards to happiness and pleasure, Epicurus inquired about the importance and influence it holds pertaining to our daily lives as well as discussed his philosophical viewpoints on the topic within his letter to Herodotus. Within this letter, Epicurus spoke about his views on values. Not regarding the monetary value of an...
1,227 words
4 pages
Comparing the Similarities and Differences in the Essays of Alarcon and Cave
Alarcon vs. Cave The authors have a way and a tone of persuading and explaining there material precisely. Not only do their essays give a glimpse about what it’s like in the real world and into the meaning of certain things both portray a different style as to how the subject should be presented. Despite the fact that the...
852 words
4 pages
The View of Love in Diotima's Ladder of Love in Symposium, a Book by Plato
One of the most famous passages in Plato’s Symposium and one that seems to receive the most attention in contemporary philosophy is Diotima’s Ladder of Love. Diotima explains that love is an ascent through a number of stages or steps on the ladder that ultimately lead to the Form of the Beautiful. This view of love is a lit...
1,596 words
5 pages
A Personal Critique of The Republic, a Book by Plato
The Kallipolis that Plato describes in the Republic features huge divisions and seeming inequalities. However these weren’t the greatest issue to Plato, he was concerned with a city that could function as well as is humanly possible, it is accepted that some sacrifices will need to be made to achieve this. This essay will c...
1,717 words
5 pages
A Comparison of Speeches about Love Made by Agathon and Socrates in The Symposium by Plato
In "The Symposium" by Plato, speeches were made at a party by different speakers on their believed to be the definition of love. I will talk specifically, of two speeches made by Agathon and Socrates who had a similar idea to start with, but different ways of thinking. I will also indicate what makes Socrates's speech philo...
646 words
2 pages
The Views and Philosophies of Epicurus on Living the Good Life
The Philosophy of Epicurus From my choice of philosophers, I chose Epicurus because I feel that I can relate to his point of view on happiness the most. Epicurus believed in the good life, focusing on fairing well and the fact that happiness would bring pleasure. In our textbook he says, “For in reference to what is enough...
697 words
4 pages
Aristotle's Views on the Dynamics of Life and Humanity in Ethics
"Life in itself is good and pleasant"[1], claims Aristotle in ethics.
The proof for this huge statement is that man has a certain dynamis or
capacity in their life. This dynamis of humanity is both perception and
thinking. Perceiving the world and our thoughts about it is existence. This
existence that every man is capable...
1,219 words
3 pages
Plato's Views on the Ignorance of People and the Victory of Conquering Oneself
The wise philosopher Plato states that, “For a man to conquer himself is the first and noblest of all victories.” Men according to Plato suffer from ignorance. More than ignorance itself as lack of information, but further as a deep spiritual disorder. There must be a conversion, a turning, of the soul from the shadows into...
1,835 words
5 pages
Aristotle's Philosophy on the Roles of Women in Society
Since the dawn of modern civilization, women have been subject to objectification and degradation at the hands of men. Many great thinkers and philosophers, including Aristotle, have theorized and written about the causes and effects of women’s place in society. Aristotle’s philosophy of the world still greatly affects the...
3,831 words
12 pages
Augustine's Confessions, Descartes' Meditations, and the Works of Other Philosophers on the Power of the Universe
Before the Enlightenment, finding and understanding one’s inner “I” revolved heavily on the aspect of God as the ultimate creator and dictator of the universe. Through analyzing Augustine’s Confessions, it is clear that God takes precedence over the individual. Over the centuries leading up to the Enlightenment, this God-fe...
1,114 words
4 pages
Heraclitus' Views on the Constant State of Change
A Constant State of Change Heraclitus thought that everything was in a constant state of change, that war and strife between the opposites is necessary, and that the opposites are identical. Without the constant tug-of-war between the two there is no balance. One does not overcome the other, for the one exists to pull agai...
632 words
2 pages
An Analysis of Desire and Deliberation under Aristotle's Philosophy
Unpacking Aristotle's definition of choice--"choice will be deliberate desire of things in our power" (113a11)--requires answering the following questions: What is deliberation? What is the object of desire? What does it mean for something to be in one's power? According to Aristotle, "We deliberate about things that are...
999 words
3 pages
An Analysis of Plato's Apology of Socrates as a Philosophical Text
The unfortunate caveat of studying ancient Greek philosophers is the immense time gap between them and us. Since they worked on these philosophical projects so long ago, much of the content has been lost in translation, or simply time. The best we have are compilations of works that can’t always be proved to be historically...
2,136 words
6 pages
Normativity in the Views of Aristotle in Book 1 of the Nichomachean Ethics
In Book 1 of the Nichomachean Ethics, Aristotle describes his thoughts on what makes something good. His views have a foundation of normativity. The adjective ‘normative’ is used to describe statements that are based on values as opposed to facts; a normative statement is a claim about how things ‘ought to be.’1 According t...
1,248 words
4 pages
Defining Virtue in Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle
In Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle concerns himself primarily with defining virtue and what makes an action virtuous. He first divides virtue into two sorts – intellectual virtue and moral virtue. He asserts that intellectual virtue is the kind that is fostered by learning from someone teaching the virtues, and moral virtue...
324 words
1 page
The Definition of Beauty Through the Mathematical Equation of Plato
How do we define beauty? The topic of Plato’s true forms resonated with me the most. Plato sought a mathematical equation to define these forms. However, the forms, justice and beauty, along with good and bad are hard to define. Beauty stands out since it has many aspects that make up its definition. Is beauty universal? M...
995 words
3 pages
An Explanation of Aristotle's Theory of Four Causes
2a) Explain Aristotle’s theory of the four causes Aristotle was a student of Plato, born in 384 BCE he enrolled into Plato’s school aged 17 and stayed there for 20 years, both as student and teacher. However unlike his teacher, Plato, Aristotle believed that the world can be explained using empirical knowledge, and physic...
1,162 words
3 pages