more from Lucretius

Single Idea 5710

[catalogued under 28. God / C. Attitudes to God / 3. Deism]

Full Idea

The nature of deity is to enjoy immortal existence in utter tranquillity, aloof and detached from our affairs. It is free from all pain and peril, strong in its own resources, exempt from any need of us, indifferent to our merits and immune from anger.

Gist of Idea

Gods are tranquil and aloof, and have no need of or interest in us


Lucretius (On the Nature of the Universe [c.60 BCE], II.652)

Book Reference

Lucretius: 'On the Nature of the Universe', ed/tr. Latham,Ronald [Penguin 1951], p.79

A Reaction

This seems to be the seed of late seventeenth century deism - the idea of a Creator who is now absent, and ignores our prayers. At that time 'Epicurean' became a synonym for atheist, but Epicureans never quite reached that point.