Tag Archives: Evil

How would you define virtue? Its opposite?

I will place under this a syllabus of the doctrines of Epicurus …
                Virtue consists in
                                1. Prudence.
                                2. Temperance.
                                3. Fortitude.
                                4. Justice
                To which are opposed,
                                1. Folly.
                                2. Desire.
                                3. Fear.
                                4. Deceit.
To William Short, October 31, 1819

Patrick Lee’s Explanation
Wise leaders seek wisdom from others.
Jefferson summarized the doctrines of Epicurus in about 20 easily understandable points  appended to this letter. In his last two posts, he warned his friend against indolence and proposed fortitude as the anti-dote. Short admired the philosopher, and Jefferson reminded him, “…fortitude, you know, is one of his [Epicurus’] four cardinal virtues.”

Here, Jefferson summarized Epicurus’ view of virtue in four points and the opposite of each. The former President could have written these himself!

“I want to thank you for your outstanding contribution to the education
and entertainment of the record audiences you attracted.”

Professor Emeritus and Chautauqua Director, Prairieland Chautauqua

Invite Thomas Jefferson to inspire, instruct and entertain your audience!
Call Patrick Lee, 573-657-2739

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