Chasing pleasures like money, fame, and status leave you empty. But one philosopher discovered a counterintuitive path to joy and meaning over 2000 years ago.
Epicurus pioneered a refreshing approach to happiness that defied convention. His surprisingly simple principles for a fulfilling life resonate now more than ever.
Read on to learn Epicurus’ timeless wisdom that science confirms leads to profound contentment and resilience.
Epicurus: Renowned Ancient Greek Philosopher
In the 4th century BC, Epicurus broke from popular thought to establish a school of philosophy based on cultivating happiness.
He didn’t advocate for wild hedonism. Epicurus taught that pleasure came not from indulgence, but from simplicity, moderation and close connections.
His teachings rejected materialism and superficial desires. Epicurus promoted finding purpose by embracing enough.
Epicurus’ 3 Types of Pleasure
Epicurus categorized pleasure into:
1. Necessary pleasures – food, shelter, friendship; life’s basics.
2. Extravagant pleasures – amplifications of necessities that should be enjoyed in moderation.
3. Corrosive pleasures – fame, fortune and status; tend to be insatiable and diminish happiness.
The key was focusing on the first two pleasures while avoiding the corrosive third kind.
Epicurus’ Approach Leads to Genuine Happiness
Science confirms Epicurus’ emphasis on close relationships, simple contentment, and shunning materialism promotes joy:
- Meaningful social connections are a top predictor of well-being.
- Gratitude and savoring “enough” boost life satisfaction.
- After basic needs are met, more possessions don’t improve happiness.
Lead an Epicurean Life in the Modern World
Follow Epicurus’ wisdom today by:
- Cherishing close friendships and family
- Decluttering and embracing simplicity
- Appreciating necessities instead of chasing excessive wealth
- Keeping a gratitude journal
- Limiting social media that fuels dissatisfaction
The ancient truths of Epicurus provide a blueprint to help you live meaningfully and authentically. Follow his teachings for a life of depth, resilience and contentment.