Readings The comprehensive nature of philosophy demands experience and cultural exposure. Protagoras, one of the most eminent in the circle of pre-socratic Greek thinkers, maintained that to do philosophy you must know e v e r y t h i n g. The result--very few philosophers. Which is, perhaps, in many cases, a blessing. But not in all, and these are what matter. Listed in roughly the order in which they were read, these writings strongly influenced the early development of the philosophy. Other works by their authors are valuable in themselves and for more background. They are not easy, but, as Spinoza remarked to end the Ethics, Everything excellent is as difficult as it is rare. Do not be afraid, or discouraged.