Crates (1970 – Alfredo Joskowicz)

Crates (1970 – Alfredo Joskowicz) from Stuart Christie on Vimeo.

The story of a twentieth-century Mexican who, following the example of Crates of Thebes*, a disciple of Diogenes, renounces all his worldly goods and goes off with his partner to live in a cave — according to nature and without artificial rules and conventions— in search of freedom.

*Crates (Κράτης; c. 365-c. 285 BC) was a Cynic philosopher who gave away his money to live a life of poverty on the streets of Athens. His wife, Hipparchia of Maroneia, lived in the same austere manner. Respected by the people of Athens, he is remembered for being the teacher of Zeno of Citium the founder of Stoicism. Some fragments of Crates’ teachings survive, including his description of the ideal Cynic state. Cynics believed that the purpose of  life was to live virtuously in harmony with Nature. This meant rejecting all conventional desires for wealth, power, health and celebrity and by living a simple life free from all possessions. As reasoning creatures, people could gain happiness by rigorous training and by living in a way that was natural for humans. They believed that the world belonged equally to everyone, and that suffering was caused by false judgments of what was valuable and by the worthless customs and conventions that pervaded society.