Milton Konvitz American Ideals Lectures

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The Stoics recognized that man is social by nature and extended the horizon of human obligations to all of humankind, where the earlier Greek philosophers as well as the Hebrews saw these obligations limited to their own societies. Stoic philosophy had a major impact on the early Church as it became a missionary religion spread by Hellenized Christians of Jewish origins, such as Stephen and Paul. The cosmopolitan and all-embracing way they presented Christ’s message was especially effective, Dr. Konvitz argues, as they brought it to the Gentile world. Mankind had a common father and that father was God. The Stoic philosopher, Epictetus, with his emphasis on freedom of the will and the brotherhood of man, is quoted at length.

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