62 - We Didn’t Start the Fire: the Stoics on Nature

Peter looks at the Stoic idea of god, a providential fire that pervades nature, and considers their idea of a deterministic and eternally recurring cosmos.

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Further Reading: 

• K.A. Algra, “The Early Stoics on the Immobility and Coherence of the Cosmos,” Phronesis 33 (1988), 155-80.

• D. Baltzly, “Stoic Pantheism,” Sophia 34 (2003), 3–33.

• M. Lapidge, “Stoic Cosmology,” in J. Rist (ed.), The Stoics (1978), 161-86.

• A.A. Long, “Soul and Body in Stoicism,” Phronesis 27 (1982), 34-57.

• A.A. Long, “The Stoics on World Conflagration and Everlasting Recurrence,” in R.W. Epp (ed.), Recovering the Stoics (Memphis: 1985), 13-37. [Reprinted in Long, From Epicurus to Epictetus]

N. Powers, “Plato’s Demiurge as Precursor to the Stoic Providential God,” Classical Quarterly 63 (2013), 713-22.

• R. Salles (ed.), God and Cosmos in Stoicism (Oxford: 2009).

• S. Sambursky, The Physics of the Stoics (London: 1959).

Dragana's picture


I have been listening to your podcasts at work for two weeks now. It is keeping me company in the windowless (Gilliam's Information Retrieval type) office. Thank you! I tried cheating on you and listening to other podcasts. Enough to say I only lasted 2 minutes. Even though it is hard for me to concentrate on two things at once I am not giving up! What I want to say is that I love the little pauses after your clever jokes. Great stuff. Will you cover continental philosophy?