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Adirondack Community College Epicureanism and Stoicism Philosophy Questions

Adirondack Community College

Question Description

Can you help me understand this Philosophy question?

Please answer the following 3 essays fully. (As a rough guide, 500 words per essay for a total of 1,500 words)

1. If you had to choose between becoming an Epicurean or a Stoic, which would you pick? Why? Explain both Epicureanism and Stoicism in your answer. (( choose Stoic ))

2. What is the problem of evil? How does Augustine deal with it? Do you agree or disagree with Augustine? Why? Explain and discuss Boethius on the issue of God’s knowledge and human free will?Do you agree or disagree with Boethius? Why?

3. Which argument for the existence of God from Anselm and/or Aquinas do you think is the strongest/best? Why? Explain. Which argument for the existence of God from Anselm and/or Aquinas (except for the 4th argument from Aquinas) do you think is the weakest/worst? Why? Explain.

note:

Answer the questions separately

Easy level of writing and English

Write from perspective of international student not christin

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AQUINAS (1225-1274) The Benedictines The Dominicans The “DUMB OX” Albertus Magnus Aristotle, “The Philosopher” THE SUMMA THEOLOGICA The Summa consists of 512 questions of philosophical and/or theological importance. The format for considering each question is a mini version of the Medieval DISPUTATION—a day long debate on a single question. Statement / objections / I answer that / Replies to objections Aquinas asks the question is the existence of God self-evident? Self-evident in itself and to us = obvious Self-evident in itself though not to us = not obvious. For example, the Pythagorean theorem. Aquinas says that the existence of God is self-evident in itself though not to us. In other words, God’s existence is not obvious but it does offer its own evidence. So, where is the evidence? Aquinas suggests that to establish the existence of God we must look to his effects. The 5th Way: The Argument from Design 1. There is great regularity and design in the universe. 2. Design does not occur by accident. Where there is a design, there must be a designer. ... There must be a designer of the universe. That designer we call God. Ockham’s Razor Design or Order? The First Way: The Argument from Motion 1. All things are either actually in motion or potentially in motion. 2. Everything that is in actual motion was put in motion by something else in actual motion. (Nothing can move itself.) 3. This gives us a chain of motion that can be traced backwards. 4. The chain cannot go back forever. An infinite regress of motion would never get started moving forward. ... There must be a first unmoved mover, and that mover we call God. The Second Way: Argument from Efficient Cause 1. Everything has an efficient cause. (Nothing is the efficient cause of itself.) 2. This gives us a chain of efficient causes that can be traced backwards. 3. The chain cannot go back forever. An infinite regress of efficient causes would never go forward. ... There must be a first efficient cause, and that cause we call God. The 3rd Way: The Argument from Contingency Contingent existence: depends on something else to bring it into existence and is dependent on something else to continue existence. Necessary Existence: does not need anything to bring it into existence and does not depend on anything to continue its existence. The Argument: The 3rd Way: The Argument from Contingency 1. Everything has either contingent or necessary existence. 2. A thing that has contingent existence did not exist at one time. 3. If everything had contingent existence there would have been a time at which nothing existed. 4. If there was a time that nothing existed, there would still be nothing. ... There must be something with necessary existence, and that thing we call God. The 4th Way: Argument from Relative Perfection In this argument Aquinas relies on the “Great Chain of Being.” The great chain of being suggests that some things have a higher level of reality than others. Things that are higher on the scale of reality are also described as having more being. So: God—Angels—human—animal—plant—rock. From Aristotle, Aquinas takes the mistaken idea that, that which is “most” in any category is the cause of all else in that category. So, for example, fire is the ultimate source of everything that is hot. Burn your finger on a frying pan, you can trace it back to fire. The Argument: 1. That which is most in a category is the cause of everything else in that category. 2. There are different degrees in the category of being. ... So there must be something that has the most being and causes everything else to have being. That something is God. Anselm (1033-1109) Proslogion literally means a discourse or “a speaking to.” The centerpiece of the Proslogion is Anselm’s ONTOLOGICAL ARGUMENT for the existence of God. ONTOLOGY: is the branch of philosophy that studies the nature of Being. It is a sub-branch of metaphysics. Anselm offers his argument against “the fool.” The fool is “the person who says in his heart ‘there is no God.’” NEGATIVE THEOLOGY: it is easier to say what God is not than what God is. “that-than-which-nothing-greater-can-be-thought” The ontological argument in standard form: 1. I have an idea of God. 2.God is “that-than-which-nothing-greater-can-be-thought.” 3.This is understood. 4.Whatever is understood exists in the mind. 5. It is greater to exist both in the mind and outside the mind than in the mind alone. ... God, “that-than-which-nothing-greater-can-be-thought,” exists both in the mind and outside the mind. Which would be better for God’s nonexistence to be, conceivable or inconceivable? The answer is “inconceivable.” So God’s nonexistence must be inconceivable. That is to say, not only must God exist but it is impossible to even conceive of him not existing. Gaunilo and the Island Gaunilo was a clergyman at Anselm’s time who criticized the ontological argument. Gaunilo also believed on the basis of faith that God exists, but he did not think Anselm’s argument proved it. A counterargument: an argument in the same form as the original argument that is obviously illogical. Gaunilo’s counterargument: 1. I have an idea of an island 2. It is the island “than-which-no-greater-island-can-be-thought.” 3. This is understood. 4. Whatever is understood exists in the mind. 5. It is greater to exist both in the mind and outside the mind than in the mind alone. ... The island “than-which-no-greater-island-can-be-thought” exists both in the mind and outside the mind. The fallacy of equivocation: using the same word or phrase in different ways in different parts of the same argument. 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Running head: PHILOSOPHY QUESTIONS

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Philosophy Questions
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PHILOSOPHY QUESTIONS

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Philosophy Questions

Essay One: Epicureanism and Stoicism
The Greek philosopher Epicurus founded the Epicurean philosophy and advocated for
hedonism in which pleasure is at the core of individual goals (Geer & Epicurus, 1964). Stoicism
demonstrated that life entails various aspects that depend on an individual’s control. While the
two philosophies advocated for wise and intelligent perspectives in the ethical context, Stoicism
emphasizes the essence of endurance to attain self-mastery other than pursuing pleasure and
avoiding pain to attain peace as it is the case for Epicureanism (Geer et al., 1964). Stoicism is a
significant and practical philosophy to consider as part of one’s life compared to Epicureanism
philosophy.
Stoicism infers that the acceptance and tolerance of certain spheres of life that are beyond
individual control are a principle means to attain self-control and self-mastery. As such,
individuals with intentions or ideas regarding their ability to maintain control over life aspects
that are beyond their power and authority are highly susceptible to distress. Stoicism, therefore,
is built upon acceptance of things that are beyond individual control (Geer et al., 1964). Notably,
it is an individual’s perspective of things that influence acceptance and can contribute to
understanding oneself other than causing anguish. The acceptance of the uncontrollable helps to
adjust an individual’s perspective regarding an event or idea in one’s life.
Stoicism exemplifies the essence of patience and endurance to understand oneself and
maintain reasonable and sound principles that influence life perspectives. Individuals always
look forward to an event with the perception that things will turn out as they expect (Geer et al.,
1964). Nonetheless, that is not always the case as they have resulted in disappointments. The

PHILOSOPHY QUESTIONS

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perspective, in this case, relates to the acceptance that Stoicism emphasizes, particularly in the
Handbook of Epictetus. A notable example is a presidential election in 2016, where the current
United States president, Donald Trump made severa...

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