Sunday, August 10, 2008

2 films

1. We went to see Wall-E today and we all loved it. For my money, it's not so good as soon as the two robots end up back on the ship full of fatty humans, but it's still a lot of fun. Good for Pixar. And they even give you a little short cartoon to start with like in the olden days you'd get a short film before the main feature.

2. I'm reading Watchmen for the first time and loving it. I know it's probably a bit geeky and the superhero thing is not usually my cup of tea, - even if very few of these guys are heroic or super, for that matter, but the story is good and fits perfectly with the medium. It is evidently the source of all the good stuff in this genre in the last 20 years and shows Heroes, for example, to be the mere derivative frothy soap opera it surely is. And, what's very exciting, the film (due next year) looks like it is going to capture the feel and look of the book very nicely.


Paul said...

Hello Mister Warren,

My name is paul (from france, excuse my poor knowledge of English language). I have one question about Epicurus’ ataraxia.

What do you imagine Epicurus would have think about people that experience painlessness of the mind because of wrong reasons; Like Buddhist that are not afraid of the death because they “think” (it is an example) they will reborn after their death?

I imagine Epicurus may have said that these people make bad choices and avoidances so they will put themselves in situations full of troubles, but we can imagine they don’t care because they are always happy. They accept everything (a little bit like pyrrhon), so they are always happy, and they always experience peace of mind, happiness, constant pleasure, joy and painlessness; but because of wrong opinions.

Can we say these people are experiencing ataraxia and katastematic pleasure? Can we say these people are as happy as Epicurean?

I imagine my question maybe looks stupid for you (because I don’t know much about Epicureanism) but it comes often to my mind.

Thank you very much for your blog, your work, and your books : I read few month ago your chapter in “A. Gigandet and P.-M. Morel eds. Lire Epicure et les epicuriens”. I was very fresh, new and instructive for me : the cradle argument and everything.

Paul said...

Hello Mr. Warren,

I have been reading again your chapter in « Lire Epicure et les épicuriens », especially the part about “psychological hedonist” and “ethical hedonist” theories.

I think that for the psychological hedonist theory, people try unconsciously to reach pleasure even if they are not conscious of it. For the Ethical hedonist theory, people try unconsciously to reach what they think is “good” to reach (even if it is not pleasure), and even if they are not conscious of it. That is the way I try to explain these theories but maybe I am wrong.

I think that psychological hedonist theory implies necessity of nature. Ethical hedonist theory implies chance and freedom.

Necessity, chance and freedom are all part of Epicurus physiologia.

So that is why, I think both “psychological hedonist” theory and “ethical hedonist” theory are part of Epicurus system:

Because they are influenced by necessity, people try to reach pleasure. But because of freedom (clinamen) and chance, people have the capacity to reach what they think is “good” for them.

Because people are influenced by necessity And freedom, people are “psychological hedonist” And “ethical hedonist”.

That is just what I think after reading your article. I guess I am wrong and this is more complicated than that because it is the only article I have read about the cradle argument.