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7 results for "consensus"
1. Cicero, On The Nature of The Gods, 1.1, 1.43-1.44, 2.4-2.12, 2.15 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 57, 86, 133
1.1. There are a number of branches of philosophy that have not as yet been by any means adequately explored; but the inquiry into the nature of the gods, which is both highly interesting in relation to the theory of the soul, and fundamentally important for the regulation of religion, is one of special difficulty and obscurity, as you, Brutus, are well aware. The multiplicity and variety of the opinions held upon this subject by eminent scholars are bound to constitute a strong argument for the view that philosophy has its origin and starting-point in ignorance, and that the Academic School were well-advised in "withholding assent" from beliefs that are uncertain: for what is more unbecoming than ill‑considered haste? and what is so ill‑considered or so unworthy of the dignity and seriousness proper to a philosopher as to hold an opinion that is not true, or to maintain with unhesitating certainty a proposition not based on adequate examination, comprehension and knowledge? 1.43. With the errors of the poets may be classed the monstrous doctrines of the magi and the insane mythology of Egypt, and also the popular beliefs, which are a mere mass of inconsistencies sprung from ignorance. "Anyone pondering on the baseless and irrational character of these doctrines ought to regard Epicurus with reverence, and to rank him as one of the very gods about whom we are inquiring. For he alone perceived, first, that the gods exist, because nature herself has imprinted a conception of them on the minds of all mankind. For what nation or what tribe is there but possesses untaught some 'preconception' of the gods? Such notions Epicurus designates by the word prolepsis, that is, a sort of preconceived mental picture of a thing, without which nothing can be understood or investigated or discussed. The force and value of this argument we learn in that work of genius, Epicurus's Rule or Standard of Judgement. 1.44. You see therefore that the foundation (for such it is) of our inquiry has been well and truly laid. For the belief in the gods has not been established by authority, custom or law, but rests on the uimous and abiding consensus of mankind; their existence is therefore a necessary inference, since we possess an instinctive or rather an innate concept of them; but a belief which all men by nature share must necessarily be true; therefore it must be admitted that the gods exist. And since this truth is almost universally accepted not only among philosophers but also among the unlearned, we must admit it as also being an accepted truth that we possess a 'preconception,' as I called it above, or 'prior notion,' of the gods. (For we are bound to employ novel terms to denote novel ideas, just as Epicurus himself employed the word prolepsis in a sense in which no one had ever used it before.) 2.4. "The first point," resumed Lucilius, "seems not even to require arguing. For when we gaze upward to the sky and contemplate the heavenly bodies, what can be so obvious and so manifest as that there must exist some power possessing transcendent intelligence by whom these things are ruled? Were it not so, how comes it that the words of Ennius carry conviction to all readers — Behold this dazzling vault of heaven, which all mankind as Jove invoke, ay, and not only as Jove but as sovereign of the world, ruling all things with his nod, and as Ennius likewise says — father of gods and men, a deity omnipresent and omnipotent? If a man doubts this, I really cannot see why he should not also be capable of doubting the existence of the sun; 2.5. how is the latter fact more evident than the former? Nothing but the presence in our minds of a firmly grasped concept of the deity could account for the stability and permanence of our belief in him, a belief which is only strengthened by the passage of the ages and grows more deeply rooted with each successive generation of mankind. In every other case we see that fictitious and unfounded opinions have dwindled away with lapse of time. Who believes that the Hippocentaur or the Chimaera ever existed? Where can you find an old wife senseless enough to be afraid of the monsters of the lower world that were once believed in? The years obliterate the inventions of the imagination, but confirm the judgements of nature. "Hence both in our own nation and among all others reverence for the gods and respect for religion grow continually stronger and more profound. 2.6. Nor is this unaccountable or accidental; it is the result, firstly, of the fact that the gods often manifest their power in bodily presence. For instance in the Latin War, at the critical battle of Lake Regillus between the dictator Aulus Postumius and Octavius Mamilius of Tusculum, Castor and Pollux were seen fighting on horseback in our ranks. And in more modern history likewise these sons of Tyndareus brought the news of the defeat of Perses. What happened was that Publius Vatinius, the grandfather of our young contemporary, was returning to Rome by night from Reate, of which he was governor, when he was informed by two young warriors on white horses that King Perses had that very day been taken prisoner. When Vatinius carried the news to the Senate, at first he was flung into gaol on the charge of spreading an unfounded report on a matter of national concern; but afterwards a dispatch arrived from Paulus, and the date was found to tally, so the Senate bestowed upon Vatinius both a grant of land and exemption from military service. It is also recorded in history that when the Locrians won their great victory over the people of Crotona at the important battle of the River Sagra, news of the engagement was reported at the Olympic Games on the very same day. often has the sound of the voices of the Fauns, often has the apparition of a divine form compelled anyone that is not either feeble-minded or impious to admit the real presence of the gods. 2.7. "Again, prophecies and premonitions of future events cannot but be taken as proofs that the future may appear or be foretold as a warning or portended or predicted to mankind — hence the very words 'apparition,' 'warning,' 'portent,' 'prodigy.' Even if we think that the stories of Mopsus, Tiresias, Amphiaraus, Calchas and Helenus are mere baseless fictions of romance (though their powers of divination would not even have been incorporated in the legends had they been entirely repugt to fact), shall not even the instances from our own native history teach us to acknowledge the divine power? shall we be unmoved by the story of the recklessness of Publius Claudius in the first Punic War? Claudius merely in jest mocked at the gods: when the chickens on being released from their cage refused to feed, he ordered them to be thrown into the water, so that as they would not eat they might drink; but the joke cost the jester himself many tears and the Roman people a great disaster, for the fleet was severely defeated. Moreover did not his colleague Junius during the same war lose his fleet in a storm after failing to comply with the auspices? In consequence of these disasters Claudius was tried and condemned for high treason and Junius committed suicide. 2.8. Caelius writes that Gaius Flaminius after ignoring the claims of religion fell at the battle of Trasimene, when a serious blow was inflicted on the state. The fate of these men may serve to indicate that our empire was won by those commanders who obeyed the dictates of religion. Moreover if we care to compare our national characteristics with those of foreign peoples, we shall find that, while in all other respects we are only the equals or even the inferiors of others, yet in the sense of religion, that is, in reverence for the gods, we are far superior. 2.9. Or are we to make light of the famous augural staff of Attus Navius, wherewith he marked out the vineyard into sections for the purpose of discovering the pig? I would agree that we might do so, had not King Hostilius fought great and glorious wars under the guidance of Attus's augury. But owing to the carelessness of our nobility the augural lore has been forgotten, and the reality of the auspices has fallen into contempt, only the outward show being retained; and in consequence highly important departments of public administration, and in particular the conduct of wars upon which the safety of the state depends, are carried on without any auspices at all; no taking of omens when crossing rivers, none when lights flash from the points of the javelins, none when men are called to arms (owing to which wills made on active service have gone out of existence, since our generals only enter on their military command when they have laid down their augural powers). 2.10. But among our ancestors religion was so powerful that some commanders actually offered themselves as victims to the immortal gods on behalf of the state, veiling their heads and formally vowing themselves to death. I could quote numerous passages from the Sibylline prophecies and from the oracles of soothsayers in confirmation of facts that no one really ought to question. Why, in the consulship of Publius Scipio and Gaius Figulus both our Roman augural lore and that of the Etruscan soothsayers were confirmed by the evidence of actual fact. Tiberius Gracchus, then consul for the second time, was holding the election of his successors. The first returning officer in the very act of reporting the persons named as elected suddenly fell dead. Gracchus nevertheless proceeded with the election. Perceiving that the scruples of the public had been aroused by the occurrence, he referred the matter to the Senate. The Senate voted that it be referred 'to the customary officials.' Soothsayers were sent for, and pronounced that the returning officer for the elections had not been in order. 2.11. Thereupon Gracchus, so my father used to tell me, burst into a rage. 'How now?' he cried, 'was I not in order? I put the names to the vote as consul, as augur, and with auspices taken. Who are you, Tuscan barbarians, to know the Roman constitution, and to be able to lay down the law as to our elections?' And accordingly he then sent them about their business. Afterwards however he sent a dispatch from his province to the College of Augurs to say that while reading the sacred books it had come to his mind that there had been an irregularity when he took Scipio's park as the site for his augural tent, for he had subsequently entered the city bounds to hold a meeting of the Senate and when crossing the bounds again on his return had forgotten to take the auspices; and that therefore the consuls had not been duly elected. The College of Augurs referred the matter to the senate; the Senate decided that the consuls must resign; they did so. What more striking instances can we demand? A man of the greatest wisdom and I may say unrivalled distinction of character preferred to make public confession of an offence that he might have concealed rather than that the stain of impiety should cling to the commonwealth; the consuls preferred to retire on the spot from the highest office of the state rather than hold it for one moment of time in violation of religion. 2.12. The augur's office is one of high dignity; surely the soothsayer's art also is divinely inspired. Is not one who considers these and countless similar facts compelled to admit that the gods exist? If there be persons who interpret the will of certain beings, it follows that those beings must themselves exist; but there are persons who interpret the will of the gods; therefore we must admit that the gods exist. But perhaps it may be argued that not all prophecies come true. Nor do all sick persons get well, but that does not prove that there is no art of medicine. Signs of future events are manifested by the gods; men may have mistaken these signs, but the fault lay with man's powers of inference, not with the divine nature. "Hence the main issue is agreed among all men of all nations, inasmuch as all have engraved in their minds an innate belief that the gods exist. 2.15. And the fourth and most potent cause of the belief he said was the uniform motion and revolution of the heavens, and the varied groupings and ordered beauty of the sun, moon and stars, the very sight of which was in itself enough to prove that these things are not the mere effect of chance. When a man goes into a house, a wrestling-school or a public assembly and observes in all that goes on arrangement, regularity and system, he cannot possibly suppose that these things come about without a cause: he realizes that there is someone who presides and controls. Far more therefore with the vast movements and phases of the heavenly bodies, and these ordered processes of a multitude of enormous masses of matter, which throughout the countless ages of the infinite past have never in the smallest degree played false, is he compelled to infer that these mighty world-motions are regulated by some Mind.
2. Cicero, Tusculan Disputations, 4.31 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 133
4.31. et ut corporis est quaedam apta figura membrorum cum coloris quadam suavitate eaque ea quae X dicitur dicuntur G 1 pulchritudo, sic in animo opinionum iudiciorumque aequabilitas et constantia cum firmitate quadam et stabilitate virtutem subsequens aut virtutis vim ipsam continens pulchritudo vocatur. itemque viribus corporis et nervis et efficacitati similes similibus quoque similibus quoque Man. similibusque verbis animi vires nomitur. velocitas autem corporis celeritas appellatur, quae eadem ingenii etiam laus habetur propter animi multarum rerum brevi tempore percursionem. propter ... percursiones Non. 161, 20 ( s. l. percursionem) percussionem X ( corr. V rec periussionem K 1 ) Illud animorum corporumque dissimile, St. fr. 3, 426 quod animi valentes morbo temptari non possunt, temptari non possunt ut c. Bentl. sed cf. Galen de Hipp. et Pl. 409, 1 M. al. corpora corpora autem p. G ( exp. 2 ) possunt; sed corporum offensiones sine culpa accidere possunt, animorum non item, quorum omnes morbi et perturbationes ex aspernatione rationis eveniunt. veniunt H itaque in in om. H hominibus solum existunt; nam bestiae simile quiddam quidam GR 1 V 1 ( corr. R 2 V c ) faciunt, sed in perturbationes non incidunt.
3. Plutarch, On Common Conceptions Against The Stoics, None (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 133
4. Sextus, Against The Mathematicians, 11.59 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 133
5. Diogenes Laertius, Lives of The Philosophers, 7.102 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 133
7.102. Goods comprise the virtues of prudence, justice, courage, temperance, and the rest; while the opposites of these are evils, namely, folly, injustice, and the rest. Neutral (neither good nor evil, that is) are all those things which neither benefit nor harm a man: such as life, health, pleasure, beauty, strength, wealth, fair fame and noble birth, and their opposites, death, disease, pain, ugliness, weakness, poverty, ignominy, low birth, and the like. This Hecato affirms in his De fine, book vii., and also Apollodorus in his Ethics, and Chrysippus. For, say they, such things (as life, health, and pleasure) are not in themselves goods, but are morally indifferent, though falling under the species or subdivision things preferred.
6. Stobaeus, Anthology, 2.62.15 (5th cent. CE - 5th cent. CE)  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 133
7. Arrian, Parthica, 1.6  Tagged with subjects: •consensus, arguments from Found in books: Wynne (2019) 133