Philosophy: A Way of Life

This is taken from Life of Pythagoras by Iamblichus. It inspires me.

“Those who committed themselves to the guidance of [the doctrines of Pythagoras [the first guy to use the term ‘philosophy’] acted as follows. They performed their morning walks alone and in places where there was an appropriate solitude and quiet; for they considered it contrary to wisdom to enter into conversation with another person until they had rendered their own souls calm and their minds harmonious…. [A]fter their solitary morning walk they would associate with one another to discuss the teachings and to exchange suggestions for improving the style of behavior. Then they would walk together…
“Their next step was to care for the health of the body…. Contrasting types of exercise were sought with a view to improving the strength and health of the body.
Luncheon was extremely simply, consisting of bread and honey; they did not drink wine during the daytime. In the afternoon there were further studies. As evening cam on they again took walks—no longer singly as in the morning, but in groups of two or three…
“After walking they bathed, and then assembled in a place where they ate supper in small groups, no group being of more than ten….
“ After supper…readings followed, the youngest reading what the eldest selected….”

The description continues. I’m not a Pythagorean, but these guys were impressive. Thoughts?

2 Responses to Philosophy: A Way of Life

  1. Xavier says:

    Fascinating. On another note, it is interesting that Pythagoras and his students met a brutal death. Apparently they were not well liked. I’m going off the top of my head here so permit me a few goofs: wasn’t he trapped in some building by his pursuers and starved to death waiting for escape?
    Heraclitus didn’t think too highly of him either. Then again, Heraclitus didn’t always speak very highly of his predecessors.

  2. Gary says:

    This sounds like what my wife should do everyone morning after first waking up. You cannot carry on a civil conversation. She is not a morning person. But, after 36 years, I try not to talk too much either in the AM.

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