What’s a Kayepos?
Kayepos is an unusual romanization of a Greek word that means “garden”. It was the name of Epicurus’ school. The Epicureans believed human happiness lay in pursuing simple pleasures with friends. Epicurus’ school was unusual among ancient philosophical schools for its inclusivity. That’s what Kayepos is about: building a supportive, inclusive community that shares in the simple pleasure of philosophical discussion.
What’s different about your classes compared to e.g free classes available online?
Our classes include one hour a week of live discussion, as well as an opportunity to get feedback on a short written piece. We love that there are so many great courses available online, but feel that they are missing an active component. Philosophy is something you do. It takes practice. And we think the best kind of practice is talking about it with other people, and writing about it.
Is this like a cult or something?
No. Our catch-phrase is “philosophy as part of life”. We want this to be compatible with continuing to live a normal existence, hold down a job, and keeping your friends. We also do not necessarily want you to agree with our views about philosophy: disagreement and diversity of viewpoints is cherished here.
So is every viewpoint tolerated?
No. We like people with a broad range of viewpoints, including different religious or atheist perspectives, and different values in life. However, we do need some basic commitments to make this a safe space to study together, and these include opposition to sexism, racism, and classism in all their forms. Basically, we ask you to treat all students in our classes as equals deserving of fundamental respect.
How much work is required for a course?
1-2 hours per week of prep and one hour of discussion.
Can you give me a certificate so I can put this on my CV?
If you attend classes, and are well prepared, then of course we can, if this will be helpful to you.
English is not my first language: Can I participate in the courses?
Yes! We ask our participants to keep in mind that some people in the class may not have English as a native language and to speak simply, slowly, and clearly. Because you can prepare before class, it’s actually quite a good format to practice speaking. Please let us know if you need more language support such as vocabulary lists for each week.
Will these courses make me rich?
Probably not, no. But they might help you find happiness without becoming rich. And philosophy is something you can practice with very few resources.