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Pyrrho, Ancient Greek Philosopher

Pyrrho (360 BC - 270 BC) was a Greek credited as being the first skeptic philosopher and the inspiration for the school known as Pyrrhonism, founded by Aenesidemus in the 1st century BC. He travelled with Alexander the Great on his exploration of the East, and studied under the Gymnosophists in India and the Magi in Persia. This exposure to Eastern philosophy seems to have inspired him to adopt a life of solitude. He wrote nothing. His ideas are known mainly through the book Outlines of Pyrrhonism written by the Greek physician Sextus Empiricus. According to Pyrrho the proper course of the sage is to ask himself three questions. Firstly we must ask what things are and how they are constituted. Secondly, we ask how we are related to these things. Thirdly, we ask what ought to be our attitude towards them. Pyrrho's answer was that things are indistinguishable, unmeasurable, undecidable, and no more this than that, or both this and that and neither this nor that. He concluded that human senses neither transmit truths nor lie. Humanity cannot know the inner substance of things, only how things appear. Engraving from "The History of Philosophy" by Thomas Stanley published in three successive volumes between 1655 and 1661.

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