Greek Roman

Diogenes The Cynic: The War Against The World by Luis E. Navia

By Luis E. Navia

During this accomplished, completely researched, and fascinating booklet, thinker Luis E. Navia undertakes the duty of reconstructing Diogenes' existence and extracting from him classes which are precious in our time.

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Extra resources for Diogenes The Cynic: The War Against The World

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He wrote a few works that we no longer have. At some point in his long life-he is said to have died when he was ninety years oldhe declared war on the whole world and attempted to deface its currency, that is, the values by which people live. His mission was to demolish the human world. He died in Corinth in 323 BCE in a place known as the Craneum, that is, the skull, just as Jesus died in a place known as Golgotha, which also means the skull. One report about Diogenes' death tells us that he died by withholding his breath-he was tired of breathing or rather of the futile war he had waged against the world.

Despite the openness of their society, the Athenians made every effort to ensure that they alone were in control of the affairs of the city. We know of other men of Sinope besides Diogenes who came to live in Athens, an example of whom is Diphilus, a younger contemporary of Diogenes and a poet of the New Comedy who wrote and produced dozens of comedies that are unfortunately nonextant. The story about the Delphic oracle merits consideration. As with other details of Diogenes' life, its historical import is difficult to ascertain, especially in view of the fact that the story began to circulate only several centuries after the alleged incident.

As with other details of Diogenes' life, its historical import is difficult to ascertain, especially in view of the fact that the story began to circulate only several centuries after the alleged incident. There is a report that the oracular incident could have involved not the Delphic oracle, but a local Delian oracle in Sinope. Delian temples where oracles were given were found throughout the Greek world, and in them, and also at Delphi, it was believed that Apollo spoke through a priestess who acted as his medium.

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