I love this flip too from a different pov:
“But he meant by pleasure the absence of pain, including the pain caused by desires for wealth, fame, or power. This did not mean living life as one long Bacchanalia. Instead it meant withdrawing from politics and public life and living quietly with friends, engaged in the study of philosophy, which provided the highest pleasure possible (think of a monastery without the Bible and the rigorous discipline). “
I find it funny from our perspective from this side of history; we’re more familiar with monastic societies than Epicurean communities, and so we must analogize backwards in time.
I’m grateful that the monasteries preserved the Epicurean lifestyle. To me, prayer was just singing songs in a group. I like singing. We’d get up at 5am, sing some songs standing up in little boxes along the wall.
Then breakfast. Prayer was a few times a day, always together. Loved the singing.
But outside of that, there was a 77 yr old guy from tennesee who had an old Mac set to a VERY large font and he was writing some 500 page masterpiece. [this was 1998 I think], one who liked to play the piano in the library… a few of them would make beeswax candles or work with the bees [they primarily made necessary money by the candles and the honey]….
… another would be on the phone all day talking to people and a few of the younger guys were surfing the web and checking emails and stuff.
There was a constant influx of visitors from all over. Some people would vacation there. Some people just wanted to join us in prayer sessions. Sometimes it would be a bigwhig like a Bishop of some kind and he gets a special service then a nice supper.
Really a pleasant lifestyle.
any way, sorry about that. sounds like a sales pitch. I have monastic life as my retirement plan. It could be an any kind of planned community of some kind as long as it embodies the epicurean friendship spirit. Monasteries are easy because they’re everywhere and have their financial support structure already in place – doesn’t really matter which religion if any they go by.