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Author: Joseph Laurin
Page: 100
Genre: Education
Paperback (978-1-61856-806-9) $14.95 Add to cart Remove
The Cynic school of philosophy was made famous by the eccentric Diogenes (412-323 BCE) who allegedly lived in a large earthenware tub. He professed a complete return to the simplicity of nature, therefore adhered to a philosophy of Ethics only and an ascetic life style. Diogenes' hamper is full of stories (See Index). To a minion of the Siracusan King Dionysius 11 who felt sorry for Diogenes eating lentils, he retorted: "If you would only learn to live on lentils, you would not have to flatter Dionysius." Once, Alexander the Great met him as he was sun bathing. He introduced himself: "I am Alexander the Great King." Diogenes replied: "I am Diogenes the dog", probably referring to his association with the Cynics. The king suggested: "Ask of me any favor you choose." The philosopher-dog replied: "Stand out of the sun." On another occasion, Alexander was puzzled when he found Diogenes examining a heap of human bones. He inquired about what the philosopher was looking for and received an answer with a lesson: "I am searching for the bones of your father [Philip of Macedon], but I cannot distinguish them from those of his slaves." Alexander, who had a short supply of humility, deigned give him his best compliment: "If I were not Alexander, I would wish to be Diogenes."
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