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Plato On God As Nous

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Plato on God as Nous

Plato on God as Nous Book
Author : Stephen Menn,Stephen Philip Menn
Publisher : Journal on the History of Phil
Release : 1995
ISBN : 0987650XXX
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This book is the first sustained modern investigation of Plato's theology. A central thesis of the book is that Plato had a theology--not just a mythology for the ideal city, not just the theory of forms or the theory of cosmic souls, but also, irreducible to any of these, an account of God as Nous (Reason), the source of rational order both to souls and the world of bodies. The understanding of God as Reason, and of the world as governed directly or indirectly by Reason, is worked out in the dialogues of Plato's last period, the Statesman, Philebus, Timaeus, and Laws. These dialogues offer a strategy for explaining the physical world that goes beyond anything in the middle dialogues, and gives the best starting point for understanding the cosmologies and theologies of Aristotle, the Stoics, and later ancient thinkers. Menn focuses on the Timaeus as Plato's most sustained effort to provide what (according to the Phaedo) Anaxagoras had failed to deliver: an explanation of the world through Reason, showing that things are as they are because it is best, or because it best serves the order of the world as a whole. Anaxagoras was disappointed because he explained things through their material constituents, without explaining why the constituents are ordered as they are; but the theory of forms has the same defect, since itcannot explain why different parts of the universe participate in different forms according to a particular order. The Timaeus and other late dialogues attempt to supply the missing explanation of the ordering of the physical world. These dialogues do not retreat from the middle dialogue theory of forms, nor do they escape into an esoteric theory of numbers; but they add to the middle dialogues an analysis of the principles necessary to account for the existence and partial intelligibility of the sensible world--not only forms and a material substance but also Nous and souls. Although the demiurge of the Timaeus (and his counterpart the Nous of Philebus) is represented as a cause both to souls and bodies, most scholars have been reluctant to identify the demiurge as a being separate from and superior to souls, because they think that both the meaning of the Greek word nous and Plato's own statements require that Nous iseither a kind of soul (mind or rational soul) or something inseparable from souls (rational mental activity). Reexamining the linguistic evidence and the Platonic texts, Menn argues that nous can mean something separate from souls, namely the virtue of rationality or intelligence that souls participate in. Menn argues that Anaxagoras' Nous should be construed as such a virtue; then he examines what status this virtue has in the context of the Platonic theory of forms, and how itis a cause both to souls and to bodies. Soul plays a crucial role in mediating the causality of Nous and introducing rational order into the world of bodies, but neither soul in general nor the world-soul in particular can be identified with Nous. Menn stresses the pre-Socratic context for the cosmology and theology of Plato's late dialogues; he argues for the importance of Diogenes of Appolonia in particular, and he reconstructs a possible new fragment of Diogenes from the Timaeus and from the Hippocratic treatise On Breaths. In the Timaeus and other late dialogues Plato attempts to do better than his predecessors by standards implicit in Socrates' critique of Anaxagoras in the Phaedo, but what Plato offers remains consciously provisional. Aristotle argues that the Timaeus remains liable to some of the same criticisms that Socrates had leveled against Anaxagoras, and Aristotle's own cosmology and theology take up Plato's challenge to carry out Anaxagoras' promise of an explanation of the world through Nous, and attempt to improve on the Timaeus asPlato had improved on Anaxagoras. In this way the Timaeus serves as an essential starting point, not onlyfor those later ancient philosophers who took it as an authoritative statement on the world and on God but also for those who took it as a challenge to do better.

Platonisms

Platonisms Book
Author : Kevin Corrigan,John Douglas Turner
Publisher : BRILL
Release : 2007
ISBN : 9004158413
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

By questioning the modern categories of Plato and Platonism, this book offers new ways of reading the Platonic dialogues and the many traditions that resonate in them from Antiquity to Post-Modernity.

Plato s Gods

Plato s Gods Book
Author : Professor Gerd Van Riel
Publisher : Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.
Release : 2013-08-28
ISBN : 1472409744
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This book presents a comprehensive study into Plato's theological doctrines, offering an important re-valuation of the status of Plato's gods and the relation between metaphysics and theology according to Plato. Starting from an examination of Plato's views of religion and the relation between religion and morality, Gerd Van Riel investigates Plato's innovative ways of speaking about the gods. This theology displays a number of diverging tendencies - viewing the gods as perfect moral actors, as cosmological principles or as celestial bodies whilst remaining true to traditional anthropomorphic representations. Plato's views are shown to be unified by the emphasis on the goodness of the gods in both their cosmological and their moral functions. Van Riel shows that recent interpretations of Plato's theology are thoroughly metaphysical, starting from aristotelian patterns. A new reading of the basic texts leads to the conclusion that in Plato the gods aren't metaphysical principles but souls who transmit the metaphysical order to sensible reality. The metaphysical principles play the role of a fated order to which the gods have to comply. This book will be invaluable to readers interested in philosophical theology and intellectual history.

Timaeus and Critias

Timaeus and Critias Book
Author : Plato
Publisher : 1st World Publishing
Release : 1929
ISBN : 1421892944
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

Download Timaeus and Critias book written by Plato, available in PDF, EPUB, and Kindle, or read full book online anywhere and anytime. Compatible with any devices.

Descartes and Augustine

Descartes and Augustine Book
Author : Stephen Menn,Stephen Philip Menn
Publisher : Cambridge University Press
Release : 2002-01-28
ISBN : 9780521012843
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This book is a systematic study of Descartes' relation to Augustine. It offers a complete reevaluation of Descartes' thought and as such will be of major importance to all historians of medieval, neo-Platonic, or early modern philosophy. Stephen Menn demonstrates that Descartes uses Augustine's central ideas as a point of departure for a critique of medieval Aristotelian physics, which he replaces with a new, mechanistic anti-Aristotelian physics. Special features of the book include a reading of the Meditations, a comprehensive historical and philosophical introduction to Augustine's thought, a detailed account of Plotinus, and a contextualization of Descartes' mature philosophical project which explores both the framework within which it evolved and the early writings, to show how the collapse of the early project drove Descartes to the writings of Augustine.

Philosophy and Religion in Plato s Dialogues

Philosophy and Religion in Plato s Dialogues Book
Author : Andrea Nightingale
Publisher : Cambridge University Press
Release : 2021-05-06
ISBN : 1108837301
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

Challenges the idea that Plato is a secular thinker, exploring the interaction of philosophy and Greek religion in the dialogues.

Plato s Gods

Plato s Gods Book
Author : Gerd Van Riel
Publisher : Routledge
Release : 2016-04-22
ISBN : 1317079930
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This book presents a comprehensive study into Plato's theological doctrines, offering an important re-valuation of the status of Plato's gods and the relation between metaphysics and theology according to Plato. Starting from an examination of Plato's views of religion and the relation between religion and morality, Gerd Van Riel investigates Plato's innovative ways of speaking about the gods. This theology displays a number of diverging tendencies - viewing the gods as perfect moral actors, as cosmological principles or as celestial bodies whilst remaining true to traditional anthropomorphic representations. Plato's views are shown to be unified by the emphasis on the goodness of the gods in both their cosmological and their moral functions. Van Riel shows that recent interpretations of Plato's theology are thoroughly metaphysical, starting from aristotelian patterns. A new reading of the basic texts leads to the conclusion that in Plato the gods aren't metaphysical principles but souls who transmit the metaphysical order to sensible reality. The metaphysical principles play the role of a fated order to which the gods have to comply. This book will be invaluable to readers interested in philosophical theology and intellectual history.

Teleology

Teleology Book
Author : Jeffrey K. McDonough
Publisher : Oxford University Press
Release : 2020-05-08
ISBN : 0190845724
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

Teleology is the belief that some things happen, or exist for the sake of other things. It is the belief that, for example, salmon swim upstream in order to spawn, and that bears have claws for the sake of catching fish. This volume takes up the intuitive yet puzzling concept of teleology as it has been treated by philosophers from ancient times to the present day. It includes nine main chapters centered on the treatment of teleology in Plato, Aristotle, the Islamic medieval tradition, the Jewish medieval tradition, the Latin medieval tradition, the early modern era, Kant, Hegel, and contemporary philosophy. Each chapter probes central questions such as: is teleology inherent in its subjects or is it imposed on them from the outside? Does teleology necessarily involve intentionality, that is, a subject's cognizing some end, goal, or purpose? What is the scope of teleology? Is it, for example, applicable to elements and animals, or only to rational beings? Finally, is teleology explanatory? When we say that salmon swim upstream in order to spawn, have we explained why they swim upstream? When we say that bears have claws for catching fish, have we explained why bears have claws? The philosophical discussions of the main chapters are enlivened and contextualized by four reflection pieces exploring the implications of teleology in medicine, art, poetry, and music.

The Cambridge Companion to Ancient Ethics

The Cambridge Companion to Ancient Ethics Book
Author : Lorelle D. Semley
Publisher : Cambridge University Press
Release : 2017-07-27
ISBN : 1107053919
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

A comprehensive and up-to-date exploration of ancient Greek ethical thought, investigating the figures, movements, and themes of this branch of philosophy.

The Cave and the Light

The Cave and the Light Book
Author : Arthur Herman
Publisher : Random House
Release : 2013-10-22
ISBN : 0553907832
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

The definitive sequel to New York Times bestseller How the Scots Invented the Modern World is a magisterial account of how the two greatest thinkers of the ancient world, Plato and Aristotle, laid the foundations of Western culture—and how their rivalry shaped the essential features of our culture down to the present day. Plato came from a wealthy, connected Athenian family and lived a comfortable upper-class lifestyle until he met an odd little man named Socrates, who showed him a new world of ideas and ideals. Socrates taught Plato that a man must use reason to attain wisdom, and that the life of a lover of wisdom, a philosopher, was the pinnacle of achievement. Plato dedicated himself to living that ideal and went on to create a school, his famed Academy, to teach others the path to enlightenment through contemplation. However, the same Academy that spread Plato’s teachings also fostered his greatest rival. Born to a family of Greek physicians, Aristotle had learned early on the value of observation and hands-on experience. Rather than rely on pure contemplation, he insisted that the truest path to knowledge is through empirical discovery and exploration of the world around us. Aristotle, Plato’s most brilliant pupil, thus settled on a philosophy very different from his instructor’s and launched a rivalry with profound effects on Western culture. The two men disagreed on the fundamental purpose of the philosophy. For Plato, the image of the cave summed up man’s destined path, emerging from the darkness of material existence to the light of a higher and more spiritual truth. Aristotle thought otherwise. Instead of rising above mundane reality, he insisted, the philosopher’s job is to explain how the real world works, and how we can find our place in it. Aristotle set up a school in Athens to rival Plato’s Academy: the Lyceum. The competition that ensued between the two schools, and between Plato and Aristotle, set the world on an intellectual adventure that lasted through the Middle Ages and Renaissance and that still continues today. From Martin Luther (who named Aristotle the third great enemy of true religion, after the devil and the Pope) to Karl Marx (whose utopian views rival Plato’s), heroes and villains of history have been inspired and incensed by these two master philosophers—but never outside their influence. Accessible, riveting, and eloquently written, The Cave and the Light provides a stunning new perspective on the Western world, certain to open eyes and stir debate. Praise for The Cave and the Light “A sweeping intellectual history viewed through two ancient Greek lenses . . . breezy and enthusiastic but resting on a sturdy rock of research.”—Kirkus Reviews “Examining mathematics, politics, theology, and architecture, the book demonstrates the continuing relevance of the ancient world.”—Publishers Weekly “A fabulous way to understand over two millennia of history, all in one book.”—Library Journal “Entertaining and often illuminating.”—The Wall Street Journal

Plato and the Good

Plato and the Good Book
Author : Rosemary Desjardins
Publisher : BRILL
Release : 2003-12-01
ISBN : 9047412362
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This book is an original interpretation of the idea of the Good that is based on the interplay between words (logoi) and dramatic action (erga) in Plato’s dialogues Philebus, The Republic, Phaedrus, Euthyphro, and the Apology.

The Oxford Handbook of Plato

The Oxford Handbook of Plato Book
Author : Gail Fine
Publisher : Oxford University Press
Release : 2008-08-13
ISBN : 0199720371
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

The Oxford Handbooks series is a major new initiative in academic publishing. Each volume offers an authoritative and state-of-the-art survey of current thinking and research in a particular area. Specially commissioned essays from leading international figures in the discipline give critical examinations of the progress and direction of debates. Oxford Handbooks provide scholars and graduate students with compelling new perspectives upon a wide range of subjects in the humanities and social sciences. Plato is the best known, and continues to be the most widely studied, of all the ancient Greek philosophers. The twenty-one newly commissioned articles in the Oxford Handbook of Plato provide in-depth and up-to-date discussions of a variety of topics and dialogues. The result is a useful state-of-the-art reference to the man many consider the most important philosophical thinker in history. Each article is an original contribution from a leading scholar, and they all serve several functions at once: they survey the lay of the land; express and develop the authors' own views; and situate those views within a range of alternatives. This Handbook contains chapters on metaphysics, epistemology, love, language, ethics, politics, art and education. Individual chapters are are devoted to each of the following dialogues: the Republic, Parmenides, Theaetetus, Sophist, Timaeus, and Philebus. There are also chapters on Plato and the dialogue form; on Plato in his time and place; on the history of the Platonic corpus; on Aristotle's criticism of Plato, and on Plato and Platonism.

Reason Religion and Natural Law

Reason  Religion  and Natural Law Book
Author : Jonathan A. Jacobs
Publisher : Oxford University Press
Release : 2012-11-08
ISBN : 0199767173
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This edited volume examines the ways in which theological considerations have figured in natural law theorizing, from Plato to Spinoza. Theological considerations have long had a pronounced role in Catholic natural law theories, but have not been seriously examined from a wider perspective. The contributors to this volume take a more inclusive view of the relation between conceptions of natural law and theistic claims and principles. They do not jointly defend one particular thematic claim, but articulate diverse ways in which natural law has both been understood and related to theistic claims. In addition to exploring Plato and the Stoics, the volume also looks at medieval Jewish thought, the thought of Aquinas, Scotus, and Ockham, and the ways in which Spinoza's thought includes resonances of earlier views and intimations of later developments. Taken as a whole, these essays enlarge the scope of the discussion of natural law through study of how the naturalness of natural law has often been related to theses about the divine. The latter are often crucial elements of natural law theorizing, having an integral role in accounting for the metaethical status and ethical bindingness of natural law. At the same time, the question of the relation between natural law and God — and the relation between natural law and divine command — has been addressed in a multiplicity of ways by key figures throughout the history of natural law theorizing, and these essays accord them the explanatory significance they deserve.

Mortal Imitations of Divine Life

Mortal Imitations of Divine Life Book
Author : Eli Diamond
Publisher : Northwestern University Press
Release : 2015-05-31
ISBN : 081013070X
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

In Mortal Imitations of Divine Life, Diamond offers an interpretation of De Anima, which explains how and why Aristotle places souls in a hierarchy of value. Aristotle’s central intention in De Anima is to discover the nature and essence of soul—the principle of living beings. He does so by identifying the common structures underlying every living activity, whether it be eating, perceiving, thinking, or moving through space. As Diamond demonstrates through close readings of De Anima, the nature of the soul is most clearly seen in its divine life, while the embodied soul’s other activities are progressively clear approximations of this principle. This interpretation shows how Aristotle’s psychology and biology cannot be properly understood apart from his theological conception of God as life, and offers a new explanation of De Anima’s unity of purpose and structure.

Flow and Flux in Plato s Philosophy

Flow and Flux in Plato s Philosophy Book
Author : Andrew J. Mason
Publisher : Routledge
Release : 2016-03-02
ISBN : 1317421876
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

In this bold new study, Andrew J. Mason seeks both to shed light on the key issue of flux in Plato’s work, and to show that there is also in Plato a notion of flow that needs to be distinguished from flux. Mason brings out the importance of this hitherto neglected distinction, and proposes on its basis a new way of understanding the development of Plato’s thought. The opposition between the ‘being’ of Forms and the ‘becoming’ or ‘flux’ of sensibles has been fundamental to the understanding of Plato from Aristotle to the present day. One key concern of this volume is to clarify which kinds or levels of flux Plato accepts in sensibles. In addition, Mason argues that this traditional approach is unsatisfactory, as it leaves out the important notion of flow. Unlike flux, flow is a kind of motion that does not entail intrinsic change. It is also not restricted to the sensible, but covers motions of soul as well, including the circular motion of nous (intelligence) that is crucial in Plato’s later thought, particularly his cosmology. In short, flow is not incompatible with ‘being’, and in this study Plato’s development is presented, largely, as his arrival at this view, in correction of his earlier conflation of flux and flow in establishing the dichotomy between being and becoming. Mason’s study offers fresh insights into many dialogues and difficult passages in Plato’s oeuvre, and situates Plato’s conception and usage of ‘flow’ and ‘flux’ in relation to earlier usage in the Greek poetic tradition and the Presocratic thinkers, particularly Heraclitus. The first study of its kind, Flow and Flux uncovers dimensions of Plato’s thinking that may reshape the way his philosophy is understood.

The Pursuit of the Soul

The Pursuit of the Soul Book
Author : Peter Tyler
Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing
Release : 2016-02-25
ISBN : 0567611094
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

One of the most striking features of contemporary psychology is the return of language of the 'soul' in contemporary discourse. In this original analysis Dr Peter Tyler investigates the origins and use of 'soul-language' in the Christian tradition before turning his attention to the evolution and preoccupations of modern psychoanalysis. In his forensic examination he explores the dynamics of psychoanalysis as a 'tool to rediscover the soul' of the 21st century seeker. Central to his book is the perceived clash between analysis and the spiritual tradition. His uncompromising conclusion is that the dialogue of the two in our present time will have far-reaching repercussions for church, society and future human well-being. Read more about his work on http://insoulpursuit.blogspot.co.uk

The Oxford Handbook of Aristotle

The Oxford Handbook of Aristotle Book
Author : Christopher Shields
Publisher : Oxford University Press
Release : 2012-08-16
ISBN : 0195187482
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

This book reflects the lively international character of Aristotelian studies, drawing contributors from Europe, North America, and Asia. It also reflects the broad range of activity Aristotelian studies comprise today, informed by cutting-edge philological research and focusing as its core activity on textual exegesis and philosophical criticism.

Plato and Aristotle in Agreement

Plato and Aristotle in Agreement  Book
Author : George E. Karamanolis,George Karamanolis,Giōrgos E. Karamanōlēs
Publisher : Oxford University Press
Release : 2006-04-06
ISBN : 0199264562
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

George Karamanolis breaks new ground in the study of later ancient philosophy by examining the interplay of the two main schools of thought, Platonism and Aristotelianism, from the first century BC to the third century AD. Arguing against prevailing scholarly assumption, he argues that the Platonists turned to Aristotle only in order to elucidate Plato's doctrines and to reconstruct Plato's philosophy, and that they did not hesitate to criticize Aristotle when judging him to be at odds with Plato. Karamanolis offers much food for thought to ancient philosophers and classicists.

Models of God and Alternative Ultimate Realities

Models of God and Alternative Ultimate Realities Book
Author : Jeanine Diller,Asa Kasher
Publisher : Springer Science & Business Media
Release : 2013-06-13
ISBN : 9400752199
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

The envisioned volume is a collection of recent essays about the philosophical exploration, critique and comparison of (a) the major philosophical models of God, gods and other ultimate realities implicit in the world’s philosophical schools and religions, and of (b) the ideas of such models and doing such modeling per se. The aim is to identify exactly what a model of ultimate reality is; create a comprehensive and accessible collection of extant models; and determine how best, philosophically, to model ultimate reality, if possible and desirable.

Exploring Gregory of Nyssa

Exploring Gregory of Nyssa Book
Author : Anna Marmodoro,Neil B. McLynn
Publisher : Oxford University Press, USA
Release : 2018
ISBN : 0198826427
Language : En, Es, Fr & De

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Book Description :

"The essays that comprise this volume were first presented ... at a seminar on Gregory of Nyssa that we convened in Oxford in 2016"--Page v.