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Emotion and Peace of MindFrom Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation$
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Richard Sorabji

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199256600

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199256600.001.0001

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Emotion As Cognitive and Its Therapy

Emotion As Cognitive and Its Therapy

(p.17) 1 Emotion As Cognitive and Its Therapy
Emotion and Peace of Mind

Richard Sorabji (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The idea of philosophy as psychotherapy goes back to 5th century BCE Presocratics. All ancient philosophers regard emotions as involving cognition in some way, though the point is hidden in Gorgias. In the 4th century BCE, Plato's Socrates goes so far as to say that fear actually is expectation of harm, but that intellectualist treatment of an emotion was not further developed until the Stoics. Aristotle discusses emotion in psychology, logic, ethics, rhetoric, and poetics. The last two contexts are inter-related and require close attention to the content of thoughts, but he does not yet contrast appearance with judgement, like the Stoics. The Epicureans recognize the role of cognition and even of unconscious beliefs. But this book focuses more on the Stoics, because they took the subject much further forward, and had a huge influence on philosophers, including the Christians.

Keywords:   philosophy as psychotherapy, presocratics, Plato, Aristotle, Epicureans, Stoics, emotions as cognitive

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