A few weeks ago I was teaching Epicurus and Lucretius in my Intro class. A moment from those lectures that occurred in all five of my sections has stuck with me ever since. After working through the basics of Epicurean ethics and how to live in such a way as to achieve, to the greatest degree possible, aponia we arrived at the problem of anxiety and the primary causes of our anxiety according to Epicurus and Lucretius. Within the Epicurean tradition, the first of these is superstition or religion (I don’t think the latter translation is the best insofar as religion doesn’t really become a distinct concept in Europe until the 17th century), while the second is fear of death; both the pain of dying and fear of punishment in the afterlife. Both of these, of course, are interrelated.