Epicurus's Pursuit Of Happiness

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Epicurus was a Greek philosopher who started the school of thought called “Epicureanism” (Gill). Epicurus believed there was nothing wrong with people wanting to have a pleasurable life. Problems occur because people do not know what will make them happy and what we want is not what we need. Epicurus stated there were only three things needed for a person to be happy; friends, freedom and an analyzed life (de Botton). He also believed that money would not bring people happiness if they were lacking in any of three basic pleasures. When discussing friends, Epicurus believed that friends were not just someone you saw once in a while or even every day. He believed that a person needed to live with friends and spend every day with them. …show more content…
He thought it was essential for a person to take the time away from the day for quiet reflection (de Botton). When discussing Epicurus in his You Tube video, “Epicurus on Happiness, “de Botton explained that advertising seduces people because it associates things we want with what we need and this leads to confusion. For example, an advertisement for alcohol showing many friends having fun together is misleading because it associates the alcohol, something we don’t need, with the friends that we do need (de Botton). Also, in his Letter to Menoeceus, Epicurus discussed that people should not fear death because “when death is present, then we do not exist” (Epicurus: Letter to Menoeceus (Summary)). He also said we should try to obtain desires that are achievable. Epicurus explained there were three types of desire; natural and necessary desire, unnecessary and natural desire and unnatural and unnecessary desire. (Epicurus: Letter to Menoeceus (Summary)). He explained that the unnatural and unnecessary desire could be something like trying to become famous or rich because you don’t know ahead of time if that is going to be satisfactory (Epicurus: Letter to Menoeceus