Jefferson on Epicurus

Thomas Jefferson took his political writings from John Locke.  Locke said that we have natural rights to life, liberty, and property.  Well Jefferson liked that but he changed it to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Where did he get this “pursuit of happiness” from?  He got it from Epicurus.  Indeed, Epicurus has influenced Jefferson so much that you can see the influence in Jefferson’s other writings like documents and letters.  Jefferson has also said that if the world reads Epicurus, the world would be in a much better place.

Advertisements

About shaunmiller

I am a Ph. D student at Marquette University. The primary purpose of this blog is to get my ideas out there, and then have other people scrutinize, critique, build upon, and systematize beliefs. This blog will sometimes pertain to what I'm learning in my classes, but it will occasionally deal with non-classroom issues that I'm thinking about as well.
This entry was posted in Epicurus, Jefferson, Locke, Politics. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Jefferson on Epicurus

  1. Killer J says:

    I read the article, and I liked this thought:

    “When we exist death is not, and when death exists we are not. All sensation and consciousness ends with death and therefore in death there is neither pleasure nor pain. The fear of death arises from the false belief that in death there is awareness.”

    I’ve always been afraid (not overwhelmingly, mind you) of death. I never thought too much about why, but I think Epicurus is right. I have the false belief that there is awareness in death. Hell, awareness is all I know of the world so it is challenging to think of a state in which I was unaware.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s