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Posted August 12, 2003
Escape from mysticism
Epictetus's teachings helped prepare the western world to achieve the secular foundations necessary for the rule of reason as law. Religious rule would wane significantly, allowing the rise of liberty of thought and wide participation in political life. While retaining the mystery of the 'logos' of the universe, particularly given the relatively recent rise of uncertainty in quantum mechanics, the simple Stoic elements promote the acceptance of reality within political systems and an imperfect nature with a minumum of violent conflict. Epictetus's mitigated skepticism laid groundwork for later thinkers like Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and David Hume, the true fathers of modern constitutional systems based primarily on reason and the rule of law. Enchiridion is a brilliant work to most readers, as all humans are at least in part Stoic.
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Posted September 24, 2010
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