Athens Philosophy Café in English
Our Philosophy Café is a monthly meeting to discuss some of the most challenging questions of philosophy at Lexi-Logos, a charming Language & Culture Center in Plaka, downtown Athens.
Wednesday June 4, 2014 (8-9 pm):
Looking for an anthropos: Diogenes the Cynic
In our next meeting we will focus on Cynicism and particularly on Diogenes the Cynic. Beloved by some and hated by many, Diogenes is surely one of the most prominent Greek philosophers. For him, philosophy was the way the lead a good and rational life, free from falsehood and unnecessary convention. He preached a return to a more natural way of life, but without leaving the city. In fact, Diogenes, following the example of Socrates, openly criticized the beliefs and traditions of the Greeks. He was what we nowadays may call a “public intellectual.” Ironic, disdainful and humorous, he never lost a chance to point out our weaknesses. On one occasion he was asked, what was the most excellent thing among men, and he said: freedom of speech.
Some scholars claim that Diogenes wrote a couple of books, but this is not sure. In any case, all that we have are anecdotes about his life. From there, we can infer some of his moral teachings.
Imagine that the most powerful person on earth calls you and asks you to express whatever wish you want to fulfill; what would you say? Do you want money, fame, power? Do you remember what happened to Diogenes?
“Once, while Diogenes was sitting in the sun in the Craneum, Alexander the Great was standing by, and said to him: Ask any favor you choose of me. And Diogenes replied: Cease to shade me from the sun.”
I look forward to meeting you on Wednesday, June 4th, at Lexi-Logos, and to hearing from your views.
The Philosophy Café is open to anyone interested in philosophy.
Marcos Breuer is a Doctor of Philosophy. He studied Philosophy at the University of Cordoba, Argentina, and obtained his master's degree with a work on Norbert Elias’ philosophy of culture. He did his PhD at the University of Dusseldorf, Germany; in his dissertation he discussed the sociological assumptions underlying the current debate between utilitarianism and contractualism. After a three-year stay in Rome, he moved to Athens in 2009 where he works as a freelance author. He has published two books and many articles in different languages on ethics, philosophy, and literary criticism. He is currently working on a book about the ethical debate on euthanasia. Marcos Breuer regularly organizes private workshops on philosophy and Spanish language & culture, and works as a consultant in the field of cultural event management.