RE: SETI Lucretius.


Clements, Robert (Robert.Clements@dva.gov.au)
Tue, 21 Sep 1999 10:24:54 +1000


Forgot to mention that a translation of Lucretius's text is available
online @ the MIT classics archive:
http://classics.mit.edu/Carus/nature_things.html. There are probably others
as well; but this is a good source for all kinds of interesting classical
texts.....

All the best,
Robert Clements <Robert.Clements@dva.gov.au>

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Clements, Robert
> Sent: Tuesday, September 21, 1999 8:31 am
> To: 'MarcusJohn@aol.com'; seti@sni.net
> Subject: RE: SETI Lucretius.
>
> The preSocratic tradition (to use Guthrie's useful definition:
> technically,
> Lucretius is a Helenistic philosopher postdating Socrates by several
> centuries; but he's following atomist thought originally developed by
> Leucippus & Democritus & developed by Epicurus) in Greek philosophy is
> filled with astonishing speculations of this kind: one of the most was by
> Democritus, who is said to have speculated on single atoms the size of the
> universe. Greek thought was profoundly (almost paranoically, in the case
> of
> Parmenides; which Plato followed as diligently as Gorgias parodied him
> heartily) rational; & therefore tended to assume that if something was
> rational, it (in a most basic sense) somehow was... a way of thinking
> which
> made speculations like this particularly rewarding. Evolutionary
> speculations - including the wildly fantastical (but logically coherent)
> visionary approach of Empedocles - were also commonplace; which only goes
> to
> show that ancient Greece was nowhere near contemporary Kansas.
>
> The University of Hanover in Indiana is working on an online history of
> philosophy; but the none of the atomist thinkers are currently online. The
> URL is: http://history.hanover.edu/project.html
>
> All the best,
> Robert Clements <Robert.Clements@dva.gov.au>
>
>
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: MarcusJohn@aol.com [SMTP:MarcusJohn@aol.com]
> > Sent: Tuesday, September 21, 1999 1:14 am
> > To: seti@sni.net
> > Subject: SETI Lucretius.
> >
> > In a message dated 9/20/99 10:19:24 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
> > bcutter@teal.csn.net writes:
> >
> > > Lucretius, Rome's most distinguished philosopher-poet,
> > > >who lived from 95-55 B.C., said that:
> > > >
> > > > "...since infinite space stretches out on all sides, it can
> > > > be in no way considered that this is the only heaven and
> > > > earth created... ...we must realize that there are other
> > > > worlds in other parts of the universe, with races of differ-
> > > > ent men and different animals... ...don't be frightened by
> > > > the novelty of an idea..."
> > > >
> >
> > What an amazing quote. It is so perceptive that I have trouble believing
> > it.
> > How in the world did he get it so right, and then have it forgotten for
> > about
> > 2 millennia? I would have liked to meet the man.
> >
> > John Marcus.



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