'The Swerve': When an Ancient Text Reaches Out & Touches Us

Is a narrative of how the book ON THE NATURE OF THINGS by ancient Roman poet "Lucretius", who was an Epicurean philosopher, was rediscovered in the 1400's and incited the Enlightenment (its influenced trickled down to Isaac Newton and Thomas Jefferson among others).  In this text, Lucretius two thousand years ago not only proposed atomism and materialism, he even presented an early form of the theory of natural selection and a diatribe against Pagan creationism!  He argued that the orbits of stars and planets, metereological phenomena, disease, thunder, earthquakes, etc. were not caused by the Gods but that they were natural phenomena.

The book is an early testimony of the progressive legacy of naturalist Epicurean philosophy.

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More evidence that mankind has been hijacked by a distraction. Progress should not be our goal, but the means to improve our lives. Writings like those of Lucretius show that understanding of nature, and the resulting technological progress, need only a favorable environment to grow. Unfortunately, religion, like Roundup, kills both the weeds and the flowers.

It's easy to wonder "what if?". We're fortunate to live in a time when we can instead wonder "what now?".

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