Compare And Contrast Augusurus And Epicurus

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Epicurus, a scientific philosopher, based his beliefs on life around his scientific theories and observations. Augustine, a theological philosopher, believed in everything through the Catholic God and was deeply rooted in his faith. To fully incorporate both of these doctrines into everyday life would be impossible. The two belief systems conflict each other greatly, but in some respects, they can be used together to find philosophical truth.
Both philosophers had radical ideas about the gods and rejected the common religious beliefs of their time. In early Roman times, people typically worshipped numerous gods, many of which were based on the Greek gods and others from other foreign or even unknown origins. They offered sacrifice to the gods
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“The gods do indeed exist, for our perception of them is clear,” Epicurus claims, “According to these popular suppositions, the gods send great evils to the wicked, great blessings to the righteous, for they, being always well disposed in their own virtues, approve those who are like themselves, regarding as foreign all that is different” (Epicurus, 484). Epicurus refuted the common belief that the gods are moral beings who care about the fate of humans. He thought instead that the gods involve themselves in their own affairs. Later in the century, Christianity became popular in the Roman empire. The Platonist beliefs were a common form of Christian ideas. Augustine described how they didn’t believe that Jesus physically lived on this earth. Disagreeing with this doctrine, Augustine declared, “Even if they know God, they do not honor him as God or give him thanks [because they don’t honor Jesus]; their thinking has been frittered into futility and their foolish hearts are benighted, for in claiming to be wise they have become stupid” (Augustine, 126). Augustine’s Confessions reinforced the idea that …show more content…
As mentioned previously, Epicurus did not believe in this concept, thinking instead that the gods tended to their own matters rather than the lives of humans. Augustine was of a very different mindset, as inferred from his belief that God seeks to create an intimate relationship with each of his people. Augustine believed that God had worked through his mother, Monica, in order to slowly bring Augustine to Christianity. When Augustine reached his teenage years, Monica became worried about his potential involvement in fornication. He reflected on this, thinking, “Were you really silent to me at that time? Were they not your words?” (Augustine, 53). God used Monica as a vehicle to convey his message to Augustine and gradually draw him in to the Catholic faith. This personal relationship was not unique to Augustine; he also believed his student Alypius gained this close relationship with God. In this case God’s intervention used Augustine as a pawn, just as God hoped to create a relationship with each of his people. Epicurus would have balked at this idea. He would have been especially appalled by Augustine’s belief that God was present everywhere at once, not existing in material form like the atoms that Epicurus described, but instead in a spiritual form distributed throughout the world, involving Himself in everyone’s lives at once. The two philosophers conflicted

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