classes ::: author, Philosophy,
children :::
branches ::: Proclus

bookmarks: Instances - Definitions - Quotes - Chapters - Wordnet - Webgen


object:Proclus
class:author
subject class:Philosophy
subject:Philosophy


--- WIKI
Proclus Lycaeus (8 February 412 17 April 485 AD), called the Successor (Greek , Prklos ho Didokhos), was a Greek Neoplatonist philosopher, one of the last major classical philosophers (see Damascius). He set forth one of the most elaborate and fully developed systems of Neoplatonism. He stands near the end of the classical development of philosophy and influenced Western medieval philosophy (Greek and Latin).
see also :::

questions, comments, suggestions/feedback, take-down requests, contribute, etc
contact me @ integralyogin@gmail.com or
join the integral discord server (chatrooms)
if the page you visited was empty, it may be noted and I will try to fill it out. cheers



now begins generated list of local instances, definitions, quotes, instances in chapters, wordnet info if available and instances among weblinks


OBJECT INSTANCES [0] - TOPICS - AUTHORS - BOOKS - CHAPTERS - CLASSES - SEE ALSO - SIMILAR TITLES

TOPICS
SEE ALSO


AUTH

BOOKS
Infinite_Library
Plotinus_-_Complete_Works_Vol_01

IN CHAPTERS TITLE

IN CHAPTERS CLASSNAME

IN CHAPTERS TEXT
1.01_-_Maitreya_inquires_of_his_teacher_(Parashara)
1.43_-_Dionysus
BOOK_II._--_PART_I._ANTHROPOGENESIS.
BOOK_II._--_PART_II._THE_ARCHAIC_SYMBOLISM_OF_THE_WORLD-RELIGIONS
BOOK_I._--_PART_III._SCIENCE_AND_THE_SECRET_DOCTRINE_CONTRASTED
BOOK_I._--_PART_II._THE_EVOLUTION_OF_SYMBOLISM_IN_ITS_APPROXIMATE_ORDER
BOOK_XIII._-_That_death_is_penal,_and_had_its_origin_in_Adam's_sin
ENNEAD_02.09_-_Against_the_Gnostics;_or,_That_the_Creator_and_the_World_are_Not_Evil.
ENNEAD_06.05_-_The_One_and_Identical_Being_is_Everywhere_Present_In_Its_Entirety.345
Theaetetus
The_Dwellings_of_the_Philosophers
the_Eternal_Wisdom
Timaeus

PRIMARY CLASS

author
SIMILAR TITLES
Proclus

DEFINITIONS


TERMS STARTING WITH

Proclus: (411-485) A prominent Neo-Platonist and theological commentator, who taught that man becomes united with God through the practice of love, truth and faith. Main works: Commentaries on Timeus, on Republic, on Parmenides; Instit. Theol.; In Platonis Theol., Comment on First Book of Euclid. -- R.B.W.

Proclus, Diadochus. The Elements of Theology. See

Proclus, quoting Orpheus, says that when Persephone is united with the celestial Zeus she is then Demeter-Kore, but that when united with Pluto or Hades she is Kore-Persephone.


TERMS ANYWHERE

Arabic Philosophy: The contact of the Arabs with Greek civilization and philosophy took place partly in Syria, where Christian Arabic philosophy developed, partly in other countries, Asia Minor, Persia, Egypt and Spain. The effect of this contact was not a simple reception of Greek philosophy, but the gradual growth of an original mode of thought, determined chiefly by the religious and philosophical tendencies alive in the Arab world. Eastern influences had produced a mystical trend, not unlike Neo-Platonism; the already existing "metaphysics of light", noticeable in the religious conception of the Qoran, also helped to assimilate Plotinlan ideas. On the other hand, Aristotelian philosophy became important, although more, at least in the beginning, as logic and methodology. The interest in science and medicine contributed to the spread of Aristotelian philosophy. The history of philosophy in the Arab world is determined by the increasing opposition of Orthodoxy against a more liberal theology and philosophy. Arab thought became influential in the Western world partly through European scholars who went to Spain and elsewhere for study, mostly however through the Latin translations which became more and more numerous at the end of the 12th and during the 13th centuries. Among the Christian Arabs Costa ben Luca (864-923) has to be mentioned whose De Differentia spiritus et animae was translated by Johannes Hispanus (12th century). The first period of Islamic philosophy is occupied mainly with translation of Greek texts, some of which were translated later into Latin. The Liber de causis (mentioned first by Alanus ab Insulis) is such a translation of an Arab text; it was believed to be by Aristotle, but is in truth, as Aquinas recognized, a version of the Stoicheiosis theologike by Proclus. The so-called Theologia Aristotelis is an excerpt of Plotinus Enn. IV-VI, written 840 by a Syrian. The fundamental trends of Arab philosophy are indeed Neo-Platonic, and the Aristotelian texts were mostly interpreted in this spirit. Furthermore, there is also a tendency to reconcile the Greek philosophers with theological notions, at least so long as the orthodox theologians could find no reason for opposition. In spite of this, some of the philosophers did not escape persecution. The Peripatetic element is more pronounced in the writings of later times when the technique of paraphrasis and commentary on Aristotelian texts had developed. Beside the philosophy dependent more or less on Greek, and partially even Christian influences, there is a mystical theology and philosophy whose sources are the Qoran, Indian and, most of all, Persian systems. The knowledge of the "Hermetic" writings too was of some importance.

As a school of Greek and Latin philosophers, Plotinism lasted until the fifth century. Porphyry, Apuleius, Jamblichus, Julian the Apostate, Themistius, Simplicius, Macrobius and Proclus are the most important representatives. Through St. Augustine, Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite, John Scotus Eriugena, and the Greek Fathers, Plotinian thought has been partly incorporated into Christian intellectualism. Nearly all prominent Arabian philosophers before Averroes are influenced by Plotinus, this is particularly true of Avicenna and Algazel. In the Jewish tradition Avicebron's Fons Vitae is built on the frame of the emanation theory. Master Eckhart and Nicholas of Cusa continue the movement. It is spiritually related to some modern anti-intellectualistic and mystical currents of thought. Plotin, Enneades, (Greek text and French transl.) by E. Brehier, (Bude), 6 vol., Paris, 1930-40. Mackenna, S., The Enneads of Plotinus, London, 1917-1919. Heinemann, F., Plotin, Leipzig, 1921. Brehier, E., La philosophie de Plotin, Paris, 1928. Inge, W. R., The Philosophy of Plotinus, 2 vol., 2rd ed., London and N. Y., 1929.

Proclus: (411-485) A prominent Neo-Platonist and theological commentator, who taught that man becomes united with God through the practice of love, truth and faith. Main works: Commentaries on Timeus, on Republic, on Parmenides; Instit. Theol.; In Platonis Theol., Comment on First Book of Euclid. -- R.B.W.

Proclus, Diadochus. The Elements of Theology. See

Proclus, quoting Orpheus, says that when Persephone is united with the celestial Zeus she is then Demeter-Kore, but that when united with Pluto or Hades she is Kore-Persephone.

Dodds, E. R. (ed.). The Elements of Theology of Proclus.

Egkosmioi or Enkosmioi (Greek) In the world or universe; applied by Proclus to his second highest rank of gods or planetary spirits, the first rank being the twelve huperouranioi (supercelestial). They are the inspiring and inspiriting agencies in the universe, the indwelling gods whose spiritual, intellectual, and psychic movements provide the universe in which they exist with the respective ranges of spiritual, intellectual, and psychic intelligence and forces. The very lowest range of these indwelling divinities, however, are but slightly above the elemental beings of the cosmic astral plane.

Hence in its widest sense Scholasticism embraces all the intellectual activities, artistic, philosophical and theological, carried on in the medieval schools. Any attempt to define its narrower meaning in the field of philosophy raises serious difficulties, for in this case, though the term's comprehension is lessened, it still has to cover many centuries of many-faced thought. However, it is still possible to list several characteristics sufficient to differentiate Scholastic from non-Scholastic philosophy. While ancient philosophy was the philosophy of a people and modern thought that of individuals, Scholasticism was the philosophy of a Christian society which transcended the characteristics of individuals, nations and peoples. It was the corporate product of social thought, and as such its reasoning respected authority in the forms of tradition and revealed religion. Tradition consisted primarily in the systems of Plato and Aristotle as sifted, adapted and absorbed through many centuries. It was natural that religion, which played a paramount role in the culture of the middle ages, should bring influence to bear on the medieval, rational view of life. Revelation was held to be at once a norm and an aid to reason. Since the philosophers of the period were primarily scientific theologians, their rational interests were dominated by religious preoccupations. Hence, while in general they preserved the formal distinctions between reason and faith, and maintained the relatively autonomous character of philosophy, the choice of problems and the resources of science were controlled by theology. The most constant characteristic of Scholasticism was its method. This was formed naturally by a series of historical circumstances,   The need of a medium of communication, of a consistent body of technical language tooled to convey the recently revealed meanings of religion, God, man and the material universe led the early Christian thinkers to adopt the means most viable, most widely extant, and nearest at hand, viz. Greek scientific terminology. This, at first purely utilitarian, employment of Greek thought soon developed under Justin, Clement of Alexandria, Origin, and St. Augustine into the "Egyptian-spoils" theory; Greek thought and secular learning were held to be propaedeutic to Christianity on the principle: "Whatever things were rightly said among all men are the property of us Christians." (Justin, Second Apology, ch. XIII). Thus was established the first characteristic of the Scholastic method: philosophy is directly and immediately subordinate to theology.   Because of this subordinate position of philosophy and because of the sacred, exclusive and total nature of revealed wisdom, the interest of early Christian thinkers was focused much more on the form of Greek thought than on its content and, it might be added, much less of this content was absorbed by early Christian thought than is generally supposed. As practical consequences of this specialized interest there followed two important factors in the formation of Scholastic philosophy:     Greek logic en bloc was taken over by Christians;     from the beginning of the Christian era to the end of the XII century, no provision was made in Catholic centers of learning for the formal teaching of philosophy. There was a faculty to teach logic as part of the trivium and a faculty of theology.   For these two reasons, what philosophy there was during this long period of twelve centuries, was dominated first, as has been seen, by theology and, second, by logic. In this latter point is found rooted the second characteristic of the Scholastic method: its preoccupation with logic, deduction, system, and its literary form of syllogistic argumentation.   The third characteristic of the Scholastic method follows directly from the previous elements already indicated. It adds, however, a property of its own gained from the fact that philosophy during the medieval period became an important instrument of pedogogy. It existed in and for the schools. This new element coupled with the domination of logic, the tradition-mindedness and social-consciousness of the medieval Christians, produced opposition of authorities for or against a given problem and, finally, disputation, where a given doctrine is syllogistically defended against the adversaries' objections. This third element of the Scholastic method is its most original characteristic and accounts more than any other single factor for the forms of the works left us from this period. These are to be found as commentaries on single or collected texts; summae, where the method is dialectical or disputational in character.   The main sources of Greek thought are relatively few in number: all that was known of Plato was the Timaeus in the translation and commentary of Chalcidius. Augustine, the pseudo-Areopagite, and the Liber de Causis were the principal fonts of Neoplatonic literature. Parts of Aristotle's logical works (Categoriae and de Interpre.) and the Isagoge of Porphyry were known through the translations of Boethius. Not until 1128 did the Scholastics come to know the rest of Aristotle's logical works. The golden age of Scholasticism was heralded in the late XIIth century by the translations of the rest of his works (Physics, Ethics, Metaphysics, De Anima, etc.) from the Arabic by Gerard of Cremona, John of Spain, Gundisalvi, Michael Scot, and Hermann the German, from the Greek by Robert Grosseteste, William of Moerbeke, and Henry of Brabant. At the same time the Judae-Arabian speculation of Alkindi, Alfarabi, Avencebrol, Avicenna, Averroes, and Maimonides together with the Neoplatonic works of Proclus were made available in translation. At this same period the Scholastic attention to logic was turned to metaphysics, even psychological and ethical problems and the long-discussed question of the universals were approached from this new angle. Philosophy at last achieved a certain degree of autonomy and slowly forced the recently founded universities to accord it a separate faculty.

Huperouranioi (Greek) Hyperuranii (Latin) Above the heavens, or in highest heaven; the name given by Plato, Proclus, and other Greek philosophers to the highest orders of celestial beings, those above the enkosmioi (intercosmic gods).

Kore is also symbolized as the celestial weaver, who when carried off to the underworld by Hades is said to have left her webs unfinished. Proclus speaks of her as “weaving the diacosm of life” (Cratylus), and Claudianus tells of her weaving a robe for Demeter in which “she marks out the procession of the elements and the paternal seats with her needle, according to the laws of Mother Nature.”

Neo-Mohism: Sec Mo che and Chinese philosophy. Neo-Platonism: New Platonism, i.e. a school of philosophy established perhaps by Ammonius Saccus in the second century A.D., in Alexandria, ending as a formal school with Proclus in the fifth century. See Plotinism. -- V.J.B.

Neoplatonism, Neoplatonists This famous school of Platonic theosophy originated in the 2nd century at Alexandria, with Ammonius Saccas (170-243), and was developed by his pupils, of whom Plotinus (204-270) was the outstanding philosopher and under whom Neoplatonism reached its culmination. Other famous representatives were Porphyry (the pupil of Plotinus, 233-305); Iamblichus (d. 330); Hypatia (d. 415); Synesius (378-430); Proclus (412-485); and concluding with Olympiodorus (6th century). Among other pupils of Ammonius Saccas were Longinus and Origen.

“No exoteric religious system has ever adopted a female Creator, and thus woman was regarded and treated, from the first dawn of popular religions, as inferior to man. It is only in China and Egypt that Kwan-yin and Isis were placed on a par with the male gods” (SD 1:136n). The aspects of Isis, for instance, are familiar enough: as the mother with her child, and as the faithful spiritual consort of Osiris — these were for easier understanding by the populace; but in the sanctuary Isis remained universal cosmic nature, the cosmic producing mother, the goddess whose veil of nature no mere human had ever raised. Plutarch recorded an inscription addressed to Isis: “I am everything which has been, and which is, and which shall be, and no one has ever drawn my veil” (De Iside at Osiride); to which were added “the fruit of my womb became the Sun” (Proclus, Commentary on the Timaeus, 1:82).

Tetraktys (Greek) The number four or a group of four, a tetrad or quaternary. The Tetraktys of Pythagoras, as an emblem, consisted of a triangle formed by ten dots, of which he says: “In what you conceive as four there are ten; then, a perfect triangle and the tetraktys [four] make seven.” and Proclus says: “the Father of the golden verses [Pythagoras] celebrates the Tetraktys as the fountain of perennial nature” (On the Timaeus 3).

  “The ancients believed in the power of man by magic practices to command the services of the gods: which gods, are in truth, but the occult powers or potencies of Nature, personified by the learned priests themselves, in which they reverenced only the attributes of the one unknown and nameless Principle. As Proclus the Platonist ably puts it: ‘Ancient priests, when they considered that there is a certain alliance and sympathy in natural things to each other, and of things manifest to occult powers, and discovered that all things subsist in all, fabricated a sacred science from this mutual sympathy and similarity. . . . and applied for occult purposes, both celestial and terrene natures, by means of which, through a certain similitude, they deduced divine virtues into this inferior abode.’ Magic is the science of communicating with and directing supernal, supramundane Potencies, as well as of commanding those of the lower spheres; a practical knowledge of the hidden mysteries of nature known to only the few, because they are so difficult to acquire, without falling into sins against nature” (TG 197).



QUOTES [12 / 12 - 24 / 24]


KEYS (10k)

   8 Proclus
   2 Proclus of Constantinople
   1  Proclus
   1 Manly P Hall

NEW FULL DB (2.4M)

   16 Proclus

1:Everything is overflowing with Gods. ~ Proclus,
2:The light of the Sun is the pure energy of intellect. ~ Proclus,
3:A true philosopher is married to wisdom; he needs no other bride. ~ Proclus,
4:Today every creature shouts in resounding song: Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is he who comes in every age, for this is not his first coming. ~ Proclus of Constantinople,
5:The soul is the image of what is above it and the model of what is below. Therefore by knowing and analysing itself it knows all things without going out of its own nature. ~ Proclus, "Commentary on the Timaeus",
6:On this day land and sea share between them the grace of the Saviour, and the whole world is filled with joy. Today's feast of the Epiphany manifests even more wonders than the feast of Christmas. ~ Proclus of Constantinople,
7:Let us become fire, let us travel through fire. We have a free way to the ascent. The Father will guide us, unfolding the ways of fire; let us not flow with the lowly stream from forgetfulness. ~ Proclus, De Philosophia Chaldaica, fr. 2,
8:The soul is the image of what is above it and the model of what is below. Therefore by knowing and analysing itself it knows all things without going out of its own nature. ~ Proclus, "Commentary on the Timaeus", the Eternal Wisdom
9:That which is present to all alike [through participation], that it may illuminate all, is not in any one, but is prior to them all... Inasmuch as it is both common to all that can participate and identical for all, it must be prior to all. ~ Proclus, Elements of Theology prop.23,
10:This therefore is Mathematics: She reminds you of the invisible forms of the soul; She gives life to her own discoveraies; She awakens the mind and purifies the intellect; She brings light to our intrinsic ideas; She abolishes oblivion and ignorance which are ours by birth. ~ Proclus,
11:For all the series of the ruling Gods (θεοὶ ἄρχοντες), are collected into the intellectual fabrication as into a summit, and subsist about it. And as all the fountains are the progeny of the intelligible father, and are filled from him with intelligible union, thus likewise, all the orders of the principles or rulers, are suspended according to nature from the demiurgus, and participate from thence of an intellectual life. ~ Proclus, The Theology of Plato,
12:Although a devout student of the Bible, Paracelsus instinctively adopted the broad patterns of essential learning, as these had been clarified by Pythagoras of Samos and Plato of Athens. Being by nature a mystic as well as a scientist, he also revealed a deep regard for the Neoplatonic philosophy as expounded by Plotinus, Iamblichus, and Proclus. Neo­platonism is therefore an invaluable aid to the interpretation of the Paracelsian doctrine.
   Paracelsus held that true knowledge is attained in two ways, or rather that the pursuit of knowledge is advanced by a two-fold method, the elements of which are completely interdependent. In our present terminology, we can say that these two parts of method are intuition and experience. To Paracelsus, these could never be divided from each other.
   The purpose of intuition is to reveal certain basic ideas which must then be tested and proven by experience. Experience, in turn, not only justifies intuition, but contributes certain additional knowledge by which the impulse to further growth is strengthened and developed. Paracelsus regarded the separation of intuition and experience to be a disaster, leading inevitably to greater error and further disaster. Intuition without experience allows the mind to fall into an abyss of speculation without adequate censorship by practical means. Experience without intuition could never be fruitful because fruitfulness comes not merely from the doing of things, but from the overtones which stimulate creative thought. Further, experience is meaningless unless there is within man the power capable of evaluating happenings and occurrences. The absence of this evaluating factor allows the individual to pass through many kinds of experiences, either misinterpreting them or not inter­ preting them at all. So Paracelsus attempted to explain intuition and how man is able to apprehend that which is not obvious or apparent. Is it possible to prove beyond doubt that the human being is capable of an inward realization of truths or facts without the assistance of the so-called rational faculty?
   According to Paracelsus, intuition was possible because of the existence in nature of a mysterious substance or essence-a universal life force. He gave this many names, but for our purposes, the simplest term will be appropriate. He compared it to light, further reasoning that there are two kinds of light: a visible radiance, which he called brightness, and an invisible radiance, which he called darkness. There is no essential difference between light and darkness. There is a dark light, which appears luminous to the soul but cannot be sensed by the body. There is a visible radiance which seems bright to the senses, but may appear dark to the soul. We must recognize that Paracelsus considered light as pertaining to the nature of being, the total existence from which all separate existences arise. Light not only contains the energy needed to support visible creatures, and the whole broad expanse of creation, but the invisible part of light supports the secret powers and functions of man, particularly intuition. Intuition, therefore, relates to the capacity of the individual to become attuned to the hidden side of life. By light, then, Paracelsus implies much more than the radiance that comes from the sun, a lantern, or a candle. To him, light is the perfect symbol, emblem, or figure of total well-being. Light is the cause of health. Invisible light, no less real if unseen, is the cause of wisdom. As the light of the body gives strength and energy, sustaining growth and development, so the light of the soul bestows understanding, the light of the mind makes wisdom possible, and the light of the spirit confers truth. Therefore, truth, wisdom, understanding, and health are all manifesta­ tions or revelations ot one virtue or power. What health is to the body, morality is to the emotions, virtue to the soul, wisdom to the mind, and reality to the spirit. This total content of living values is contained in every ray of visible light. This ray is only a manifestation upon one level or plane of the total mystery of life. Therefore, when we look at a thing, we either see its objective, physical form, or we apprehend its inner light Everything that lives, lives in light; everything that has an existence, radiates light. All things derive their life from light, and this light, in its root, is life itself. This, indeed, is the light that lighteth every man who cometh into the world. ~ Manly P Hall, Paracelsus,

*** WISDOM TROVE ***

*** NEWFULLDB 2.4M ***

1:Everything is overflowing with Gods. ~ Proclus,
2:Everything is overflowing with Gods. ~ Proclus,
3:Wherever there is number, there is beauty. ~ Proclus,
4:Wherever there is a number, there is beauty. ~ Proclus,
5:The light of the Sun is the pure energy of intellect. ~ Proclus,
6:The light of the Sun is the pure energy of intellect. ~ Proclus,
7:A true philosopher is married to wisdom; he needs no other bride. ~ Proclus,
8:A true philosopher is married to wisdom; he needs no other bride. ~ Proclus,
9:There is no other Royal path which leads to geometry. ~ Euclid to Ptolemy I. See Proclus' Commentaries on Euclid's Elements, Book II, Chapter IV.,
10:The soul is the image of what is above it and the model of what is below. Therefore by knowing and analysing itself it knows all things without going out of its own nature. ~ Proclus, “Commentary on the Timaeus”,
11:The soul is the image of what is above it and the model of what is below. Therefore by knowing and analysing itself it knows all things without going out of its own nature. ~ Proclus, “Commentary on the Timaeus”,
12:Let us become fire, let us travel through fire. We have a free way to the ascent. The Father will guide us, unfolding the ways of fire; let us not flow with the lowly stream from forgetfulness. ~ Proclus, De Philosophia Chaldaica, fr. 2,
13:This therefore is Mathematics: She reminds you of the invisible forms of the soul; She gives life to her own discoveries; She awakens the mind and purifies the intellect; She brings light to our intrinsic ideas; She abolishes oblivion and ignorance which are ours by birth. ~ Proclus,
14:This therefore is Mathematics: She reminds you of the invisible forms of the soul; She gives life to her own discoveraies; She awakens the mind and purifies the intellect; She brings light to our intrinsic ideas; She abolishes oblivion and ignorance which are ours by birth. ~ Proclus,
15:[On Archimedes mathematical results:] It is not possible to find in all geometry more difficult and intricate questions, or more simple and lucid explanation... No investigation of yours would succeed in attaining the proof, and yet, once seen you immediately believe you would have discovered it. ~ Proclus,
16:In the discovery of lemmas the best aid is a mental aptitude for it. For we may see many who are quick at solutions and yet do not work by method ; thus Cratistus in our time was able to obtain the required result from first principles, and those the fewest possible, but it was his natural gift which helped him to the discovery. ~ Proclus,
17:It is well known that the man who first made public the theory of irrationals perished in a shipwreck in order that the inexpressible and unimaginable should ever remain veiled. And so the guilty man, who fortuitously touched on and revealed this aspect of living things, was taken to the place where he began and there is for ever beaten by the waves. ~ Proclus,
18:For all the series of the ruling Gods (θεοὶ ἄρχοντες), are collected into the intellectual fabrication as into a summit, and subsist about it. And as all the fountains are the progeny of the intelligible father, and are filled from him with intelligible union, thus likewise, all the orders of the principles or rulers, are suspended according to nature from the demiurgus, and participate from thence of an intellectual life. ~ Proclus, The Theology of Plato,
19:Fusing the doctrines of Plotinus and Proclus with the creeds and beliefs of Christianity, Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite combined the Neo-Platonic conviction of the fundamental oneness and luminous aliveness of the world with the Christian dogmas of the triune God, original sin and redemption. The universe is created, animated and unified by the perpetual self-realization of what Plotinus had called "the One," what the Bible had called "the Lord," and what he calls "the superessential Light. ~ Erwin Panofsky,
20:Man is a little world--a microcosm inside the great universe. Like a fetus, he is suspended, by all his three spirits, in the matrix of the macrocosmos; and while his terrestrial body is in constant sympathy with its parent earth, his astral soul lives in unison with the sidereal anima mundi. He is in it, as it is in him, for the world-pervading element fills all space, and is space itself, only shoreless and infinite. As to his third spirit, the divine, what is it but an infinitesimal ray, one of the countless radiations proceeding directly from the Highest Cause--the Spiritual Light of the World? This is the trinity of organic and inorganic nature--the spiritual and the physical, which are three in one, and of which Proclus says that 'The first monad is the Eternal God; the second, eternity; the third, the paradigm, or pattern of the universe;' the three constituting the Intelligible Triad. ~ Helena Petrovna Blavatsky,
21:nflujo de Proclo No e s , en suma, sorprendente, que Proclo haya ejercido sobre el pensamiento cristiano una larga influencia. En todo caso, es e l único de los últimos paganos que ha poseído esta irradiación.Damascio, por ejemplo, parece carecer de e l l a , aunque estuvo entregado como él al antiguo culto. El misticismo poético de Proclo ha sido fác i lmente asimilado por los defensores de la Iglesia, al igual que sus distin­ ciones escolásticas han podido incorporarse a su filosofía. Proclo abre l a Edad Media. Sin embargo, se puede j uzgar que valía más que sus sucesore s , enzarzados en abstracciones estériles y en verbalis­ mos, al igual que sus antecesores valían más que é l . Hay que esperar a la época moderna para ve r cómo el pensamiento filosófico se reincorpora y vuelve a hallar la fuerza que había poseído en la Grecia an­ tigua. En esta época Proclo irá cayendo poco a poco en el olvido. Pero l e queda la gloria de haber asegu­ rado una transición entre la luz antigua y la penum­ bra medieval, ayudando a esta última a conservar un resto de calor.P.BASTID, Proclus et le crépuscule de la pensée grecque, París, 1 9 6 9 , 4 5 8 ~ Anonymous,
22:Plato compared the whole self to a chariot in which reason was the driver and two irrational parts, the biological appetites and the social reactions, were two very unruly horses. The challenge that had to be solved, to him and to the Neoplatonists, was how to train these horses so that they would accept the guidance of the reins and take the chariot the way the charioteer wanted to go. Several centuries of work went into finding the best ways to meet that challenge, and the toolkit that became central to Neoplatonism from the third century CE on – well, that’s where magic comes in.7 In the writings of Neoplatonist philosophers such as Iamblichus and Proclus, the word used was theurgy or divine work, which they distinguished from thaumaturgy, working wonders, the common or garden variety magical practice that went on in classical society in much the same way that it goes on in ours. The practice of theurgy was exactly the unpopular kind of magic I introduced in the previous chapter; in the technical language of the time, it was practiced to purify the vehicles of consciousness; in the terms I have been using, it was intended to see to it that the baboonery of biological drives and social reactions didn’t interfere with the reason and the will. ~ John Michael Greer,
23:The legendary inscription above the Academy's door speaks loudly about Plato's attitude toward mathematics. In fact, most of the significant mathematical research of the fourth century BC was carried out by people associated in one way or another with the Academy. Yet Plato himself was not a mathematician of great technical dexterity, and his direct contributions to mathematical knowledge were probably minimal. Rather, he was an enthusiastic spectator, a motivating source of challenge, an intelligent critic, an an inspiring guide. The first century philosopher and historian Philodemus paints a clear picture: "At that time great progress was seen in mathematics, with Plato serving as the general architect setting out problems, and the mathematicians investigating them earnestly." To which the Neoplatonic philosopher and mathematician Proclus adds: "Plato...greatly advanced mathematics in general and geometry in particular because of his zeal for these studies. It is well known that his writings are thickly sprinkled with mathematical terms and that he everywhere tries to arouse admiration for mathematics among students of philosophy." In other words, Plato, whose mathematical knowledge was broadly up to date, could converse with the mathematicians as an equal and as a problem presenter, even though his personal mathematical achievements were not significant. ~ Mario Livio,
24:Although a devout student of the Bible, Paracelsus instinctively adopted the broad patterns of essential learning, as these had been clarified by Pythagoras of Samos and Plato of Athens. Being by nature a mystic as well as a scientist, he also revealed a deep regard for the Neoplatonic philosophy as expounded by Plotinus, Iamblichus, and Proclus. Neo­platonism is therefore an invaluable aid to the interpretation of the Paracelsian doctrine.
   Paracelsus held that true knowledge is attained in two ways, or rather that the pursuit of knowledge is advanced by a two-fold method, the elements of which are completely interdependent. In our present terminology, we can say that these two parts of method are intuition and experience. To Paracelsus, these could never be divided from each other.
   The purpose of intuition is to reveal certain basic ideas which must then be tested and proven by experience. Experience, in turn, not only justifies intuition, but contributes certain additional knowledge by which the impulse to further growth is strengthened and developed. Paracelsus regarded the separation of intuition and experience to be a disaster, leading inevitably to greater error and further disaster. Intuition without experience allows the mind to fall into an abyss of speculation without adequate censorship by practical means. Experience without intuition could never be fruitful because fruitfulness comes not merely from the doing of things, but from the overtones which stimulate creative thought. Further, experience is meaningless unless there is within man the power capable of evaluating happenings and occurrences. The absence of this evaluating factor allows the individual to pass through many kinds of experiences, either misinterpreting them or not inter­ preting them at all. So Paracelsus attempted to explain intuition and how man is able to apprehend that which is not obvious or apparent. Is it possible to prove beyond doubt that the human being is capable of an inward realization of truths or facts without the assistance of the so-called rational faculty?
   According to Paracelsus, intuition was possible because of the existence in nature of a mysterious substance or essence-a universal life force. He gave this many names, but for our purposes, the simplest term will be appropriate. He compared it to light, further reasoning that there are two kinds of light: a visible radiance, which he called brightness, and an invisible radiance, which he called darkness. There is no essential difference between light and darkness. There is a dark light, which appears luminous to the soul but cannot be sensed by the body. There is a visible radiance which seems bright to the senses, but may appear dark to the soul. We must recognize that Paracelsus considered light as pertaining to the nature of being, the total existence from which all separate existences arise. Light not only contains the energy needed to support visible creatures, and the whole broad expanse of creation, but the invisible part of light supports the secret powers and functions of man, particularly intuition. Intuition, therefore, relates to the capacity of the individual to become attuned to the hidden side of life. By light, then, Paracelsus implies much more than the radiance that comes from the sun, a lantern, or a candle. To him, light is the perfect symbol, emblem, or figure of total well-being. Light is the cause of health. Invisible light, no less real if unseen, is the cause of wisdom. As the light of the body gives strength and energy, sustaining growth and development, so the light of the soul bestows understanding, the light of the mind makes wisdom possible, and the light of the spirit confers truth. Therefore, truth, wisdom, understanding, and health are all manifesta­ tions or revelations ot one virtue or power. What health is to the body, morality is to the emotions, virtue to the soul, wisdom to the mind, and reality to the spirit. This total content of living values is contained in every ray of visible light. This ray is only a manifestation upon one level or plane of the total mystery of life. Therefore, when we look at a thing, we either see its objective, physical form, or we apprehend its inner light Everything that lives, lives in light; everything that has an existence, radiates light. All things derive their life from light, and this light, in its root, is life itself. This, indeed, is the light that lighteth every man who cometh into the world. ~ Manly P Hall, Paracelsus,

IN CHAPTERS [12/12]



   4 Philosophy
   3 Christianity
   1 Occultism
   1 Hinduism
   1 Alchemy


   2 Plotinus
   2 Plato


   3 The Secret Doctrine


1.01 - Maitreya inquires of his teacher (Parashara), #Vishnu Purana, #Vyasa, #Hinduism
  [16]: These are, in fact, the brief replies to Maitreya's six questions (p. 3), or, How was the world created? By Viṣṇu. How will it be? At the periods of dissolution it will be in Viṣṇu. Whence proceeded animate and inanimate things? From Viṣṇu. Of what is the substance of the world? Viṣṇu. Into what has it been, and will it again he, resolved? Viṣṇu. He is therefore both the instrumental and material cause of the universe. 'The answer to the "whence" replies to the query as to the instrumental cause: "He is the world" replies to the inquiry as to the material cause.' 'And by this explanation of the agency of the materiality, &c. of Viṣṇu, as regards the universe, (it follows that) all will be produced from, and all will repose in him.' We have here precisely the τὸ πᾶν of the Orphic doctrines, and we might fancy that Brucker was translating a passage from a Purāṇa when he describes them in these words: "Continuisse Jovem (lege Viṣṇum) sive summum ortum in se omnia, omnibus ortum ex se dedisse, omnia ex se genuisse, et ex sua produxisse essentia. Spiritum esse universi qui omnia regit vivificat estque; ex quibus necessario sequitur omnia in eum reditura." Hist. Philos. I. 388. Jamblichus and Proclus also testify that the Pythagorean doctrines of the origin of the material world from the Deity, and its identity with him, were much the same. Cudworth, l. c. p. 348.

1.43 - Dionysus, #The Golden Bough, #James George Frazer, #Occultism
  occupied for a short time the throne of his father Zeus. So Proclus
  tells us that "Dionysus was the last king of the gods appointed by

BOOK II. -- PART I. ANTHROPOGENESIS., #The Secret Doctrine, #H P Blavatsky, #Theosophy
  "The famous Atlantis exists no longer, but we can hardly doubt that it did once," says Proclus, "for
  Marcellus, who wrote a history of Ethiopian affairs, says that such, and so great an island once existed,

BOOK II. -- PART II. THE ARCHAIC SYMBOLISM OF THE WORLD-RELIGIONS, #The Secret Doctrine, #H P Blavatsky, #Theosophy
  "Before the mathematical numbers," says Proclus (in Quinto Libro, EUCLID), "there are the Selfmoving numbers; before the figures apparent -- the vital figures, and before producing the material
  worlds which move in a Circle, the Creative Power produced the invisible Circles."
  --
  intelligible triad, as is most satisfactorily shown by Proclus in the third book of his treatise on the
  theology of Plato. And between these two triads (the double triangle), the one intelligible, and the
  --
  (tetraktis, four!)," or Seven. Why does Proclus say in Timaeus, c. iii. -- "The Father of the golden
  verses celebrates the Tetractys as the fountain of perennial nature"?

BOOK I. -- PART II. THE EVOLUTION OF SYMBOLISM IN ITS APPROXIMATE ORDER, #The Secret Doctrine, #H P Blavatsky, #Theosophy
  infinity of Pythagoras and Plato.* . . . . Proclus says of this highest principle that it is. . . . "the Unity of
  Unities, and beyond the first adyte. . . . . more ineffable than all silence, and more occult than all
  --
  goddess Rhea," says Proclus in Timaeus (p. 121), "is a Monad, Duad, and Heptad," comprehending in
  herself all the Titanidae, "who are seven."

BOOK XIII. - That death is penal, and had its origin in Adam's sin, #City of God, #Saint Augustine of Hippo, #Christianity
  [412] The Platonists of the Alexandrian and Athenian schools, from Plotinus to Proclus, are at one in recognising in God three principles or hypostases: 1st, the One or the Good, which is the Father; 2d, the Intelligence or Word, which is the Son; 3d, the Soul, which is the universal principle of life. But as to the nature and order of these hypostases, the Alexandrians are no longer at one with the school of Athens. On the very subtle differences between the Trinity of Plotinus and that of Porphyry, consult M. Jules Simon, ii. 110, and M. Vacherot, ii. 37.Saisset.
  [413] See below, c. 28.

ENNEAD 02.09 - Against the Gnostics; or, That the Creator and the World are Not Evil., #Plotinus - Complete Works Vol 02, #Plotinus, #Christianity
  132 See Aristotle, Plato's Critias, Numenius, 32, and Proclus.
  133 As thought Aristotle, de Anima, ii. 1.4.
  --
  289 Between the sense-world, and the intelligible world, see iv. 3.58; v. 2.3. Plotinos is followed by Jamblichus and Damascius, but Proclus and Hermias denied that the soul did not entirely enter into the body, Stobaeus, Ecl. i. 52.
  290 See iv. 3.18; iv. 4.3.

ENNEAD 06.05 - The One and Identical Being is Everywhere Present In Its Entirety.345, #Plotinus - Complete Works Vol 04, #Plotinus, #Christianity
  Now in order to understand the nature of the period when Amelius was the chief disciple of Plotinos, we must recall who Amelius was. In the first place, he hailed from the home-town of Numenius, Apamea in Syria. He had adopted as son Hostilianus-Hesychius, who also hailed from Apamea. And it was to Apamea that Amelius withdrew, after he left Plotinos. We are therefore not surprised to learn that he had written out almost all the books of Numenius, that he had gathered them together, and learned most of them by heart.452 Then we learn from Proclus (see Zeller's account) that Amelius taught the trine division of the divine creator, exactly as did Numenius. Is it any wonder, then, that he wrote a book on the differences between Plotinos and Numenius at a later date, when Porphyry had started a polemic with him? During his period as disciple of Plotinos, twenty-four years in duration, Plotinos would naturally have been under Numenian influence of some kind, and we cannot be very far wrong in thinking that this change of editors must have left some sort of impress on the dreamy thinker, Plotinos, ever seeking to experience an ecstasy.
  *****
  --
  What Plato did for early Greek philosophy, what Numenius did for post-Platonic thought, that Proclus Diadochus, the "Successor," did for Plotinos and his followers. For the first time since Numenius we find again a comparative method. By this time religion and philosophy have fused in magic, and so, instead of a comparative religion, we have a comparative philosophy. Proclus was the first genuine commentator, quoting authorities on all sides. He was sufficient of a philosopher to grasp Neoplatonism as a school of thought; and far from paying any attention to Ammonius, as recent philosophy has done, as source of Neoplatonism, he traces the movement as far as Plutarch, calling him the "father of us all," inasmuch as he introduced the conception of "hypostasis." Evidently, Proclus looked upon this as the centre of Neoplatonic development, and therefore we shall be justified in a closer study of this conception; and we may even say that its historic destiny was a continuation of the main stream of creative Greek philosophy; or, if you prefer, of Platonism, or Noumenianism, or even Plotinian thought.
  1294 Did Greek philosophy die with Proclus? The political changes of the time forced alteration of dialect and position; but the accumulations of mental achievements could not perish. This again we owe to Proclus. Besides being the first great commentator he precipitated his most valuable achievements in logical form, in analytic arrangement, in the form of crystal-clear propositions, theorems, demonstrations, and corollaries. Such a highly abstract form was inevitable, inasmuch as Numenius had turned away from Aristotelian observation of nature. Just like the Hebrew thinkers, who finally became commentators and abstract theorizers, nothing else was left for a philosophy without connection with experiment, when whittled down by the keenest intellects of the times.
  This abstract method, still familiarly used by geometry, reappeared among the School-men, notably in Thomas Aquinas. Later it persisted with Spinoza and Descartes. However, rising experimentalism has gradually terminated it, its last form appearing in Kant and Hegel. Kant's "Ding in sich," reached after abstracting all qualities, is only a re-statement of Numenius and Plotinos's "subject," or, definition of matter; and Hegel's dialectic, beginning with Being and Not-being, more definitely proclaimed by Plotinos, goes as far back as the Eleatics and Heraclitus, not to mention Plato. However, Kant and Hegel are the great masters of modern thought; and although at one time the rising tide of materialism and cruder forms of evolution threatened to obscure it, Karl Pearson's "Grammar of Science," generous as it is in invective against Kant and Hegel, in modern terms clinches Berkeley's and Kant's demonstration of the reality of the super-sensual, thus vindicating Plotinos, and, before him, Numenius.
  --
  So important to Neoplatonism did this term seem to Proclus, that he did not hesitate to say that Plutarch, by the use thereof, became "our first forefa ther." He therefore develops it further. Among the hidden and1302 intelligible gods are three hypostases. The first is characterized by the Good; it thinks the Good itself, and dwells with the paternal Monad. The second is characterized by knowledge, and resides in the first thought; while the third is characterized by beauty, and dwells with the most beautiful of the intelligible. They are the causes from which proceed three monads which are self-existent but under the form of a unity, and as in a germ, in their cause. Where they manifest, they take a distinct form: faith, truth, and love (Cousin's title: "Du Vrai, du Beau, et du Bien"). This trinity pervades all the divine worlds.
  In order to understand the attitude of Plotinos on the subject, we must try to put ourselves in his position. In the first place, on Porphyry's own admission, he had added to Platonism Peripatetic and Stoic views. From Aristotle his chief borrowings were the categories of form and matter, and the distinction between potentiality and actuality,488 as well as the Aristotelian psychology of various souls. To the Stoics he was drawn by their monism, which led him to drop the traditional Academico-Stoic feud, or rather to take the side of the Stoics against Numenius the Platonist dualist and the dualistic successors, the Gnostics. But there was a difference between the Stoics and Plotinos. The Stoics assimilated spirit to matter, while Plotinos, reminiscent of Plato, preferred to assimilate matter to spirit. Still, he used their terminology, and categories, including the conception of a hypostasis, or form of existence. With this equipment, he held to the traditional Platonic trinity of the "Letters," the King, the intellect, and the soul. Philosophically, however, he had received from Numenius the inheritance of a double name of the Divinity, Being and Essence. As a thinker, he was therefore forced to accommodate Numenius to Plato, and by adding to Numenius's name of the divinity, to complete Numenius's theology by Numenius's own1303 cosmology. This then he did by adding as third hypostasis the Aristotelian dynamic energy.
  --
  We must focus our observations on Plotinos as a philosopher. To begin with, we should review his successors, Porphyry, Jamblichus, Sallust, Proclus, Hierocles, Simplicius;738 Macrobius;739 Priscus; Olympicdorus and John Philoponus.740
  Among the Arabian philosophers that follow in his steps are Maimonides and Ibn Gebirol.741
  --
  151 Proclus, Theology of Plato, vi. 23.
  152 As the generation of the world, in Plato's Timaeus, p. 28, 29, Cary, 9; and the erecting into separate Gods various powers of the same divinity, as Proclus said, in his commentary thereon, in Parm. i. 30.
  153 ii. 3.17; ii. 9.2.
  --
  487 Proclus, in Parm. vi. 27.
  488 Energeia and dynamis.

Theaetetus, #unset, #Anonymous, #Various
  There is no reason to doubt that Theaetetus was a real person, whose name survived in the next generation. But neither can any importance be attached to the notices of him in Suidas and Proclus, which are probably based on the mention of him in Plato. According to a confused statement in Suidas, who mentions him twice over, first, as a pupil of Socrates, and then of Plato, he is said to have written the first work on the Five Solids. But no early authority cites the work, the invention of which may have been easily suggested by the division of roots, which Plato attri butes to him, and the allusion to the backward state of solid geometry in the Republic. At any rate, there is no occasion to recall him to life again after the battle of Corinth, in order that we may allow time for the completion of such a work (Muller). We may also remark that such a supposition entirely destroys the pathetic interest of the introduction.
  Theodorus, the geometrician, had once been the friend and disciple of Protagoras, but he is very reluctant to leave his retirement and defend his old master. He is too old to learn Socrates' game of question and answer, and prefers the digressions to the main argument, because he finds them easier to follow. The mathematician, as Socrates says in the Republic, is not capable of giving a reason in the same manner as the dialectician, and Theodorus could not therefore have been appropriately introduced as the chief respondent. But he may be fairly appealed to, when the honour of his master is at stake. He is the 'guardian of his orphans,' although this is a responsibility which he wishes to throw upon Callias, the friend and patron of all Sophists, declaring that he himself had early 'run away' from philosophy, and was absorbed in mathematics. His extreme dislike to the Heraclitean fanatics, which may be compared with the dislike of Theaetetus to the materialists, and his ready acceptance of the noble words of Socrates, are noticeable traits of character.

The Dwellings of the Philosophers, #unset, #Anonymous, #Various
  representing naturing Nature. Proclus says verbatim that Metis, also called [*160-2]
  (Erikarpaios) or Germinating Nature, was the hermaphroditic god of the Snake worshippers.

the Eternal Wisdom, #unset, #Anonymous, #Various
  17) The soul is the image of what is above it and the model of what is below. Therefore by knowing and analysing itself it knows all things without going out of its own nature. ~ Proclus, "Commentary on the Timaeus"
  18) The soul includes everything; whoever knows his soul, knows everything and whoever is ignorant of his soul, is ignorant of everything. ~ Socrates

Timaeus, #unset, #Anonymous, #Various
  We have now to consider the much discussed question of the rotation or immobility of the earth. Plato's doctrine on this subject is contained in the following words:'The earth, which is our nurse, compacted (OR revolving) around the pole which is extended through the universe, he made to be the guardian and artificer of night and day, first and eldest of gods that are in the interior of heaven'. There is an unfortunate doubt in this passage (1) about the meaning of the word (Greek), which is translated either 'compacted' or 'revolving,' and is equally capable of both explanations. A doubt (2) may also be raised as to whether the words 'artificer of day and night' are consistent with the mere passive causation of them, produced by the immobility of the earth in the midst of the circling universe. We must admit, further, (3) that Aristotle attri buted to Plato the doctrine of the rotation of the earth on its axis. On the other hand it has been urged that if the earth goes round with the outer heaven and sun in twenty-four hours, there is no way of accounting for the alternation of day and night; since the equal motion of the earth and sun would have the effect of absolute immobility. To which it may be replied that Plato never says that the earth goes round with the outer heaven and sun; although the whole question depends on the relation of earth and sun, their movements are nowhere precisely described. But if we suppose, with Mr. Grote, that the diurnal rotation of the earth on its axis and the revolution of the sun and outer heaven precisely coincide, it would be difficult to imagine that Plato was unaware of the consequence. For though he was ignorant of many things which are familiar to us, and often confused in his ideas where we have become clear, we have no right to attri bute to him a childish want of reasoning about very simple facts, or an inability to understand the necessary and obvious deductions from geometrical figures or movements. Of the causes of day and night the pre-Socratic philosophers, and especially the Pythagoreans, gave various accounts, and therefore the question can hardly be imagined to have escaped him. On the other hand it may be urged that the further step, however simple and obvious, is just what Plato often seems to be ignorant of, and that as there is no limit to his insight, there is also no limit to the blindness which sometimes obscures his intelligence (compare the construction of solids out of surfaces in his account of the creation of the world, or the attraction of similars to similars). Further, Mr. Grote supposes, not that (Greek) means 'revolving,' or that this is the sense in which Aristotle understood the word, but that the rotation of the earth is necessarily implied in its adherence to the cosmical axis. But (a) if, as Mr Grote assumes, Plato did not see that the rotation of the earth on its axis and of the sun and outer heavens around the earth in equal times was inconsistent with the alternation of day and night, neither need we suppose that he would have seen the immobility of the earth to be inconsistent with the rotation of the axis. And (b) what proof is there that the axis of the world revolves at all? (c) The comparison of the two passages quoted by Mr Grote (see his pamphlet on 'The Rotation of the Earth') from Aristotle De Coelo, Book II (Greek) clearly shows, although this is a matter of minor importance, that Aristotle, as Proclus and Simplicius supposed, understood (Greek) in the Timaeus to mean 'revolving.' For the second passage, in which motion on an axis is expressly mentioned, refers to the first, but this would be unmeaning unless (Greek) in the first passage meant rotation on an axis. (4) The immobility of the earth is more in accordance with Plato's other writings than the opposite hypothesis. For in the Phaedo the earth is described as the centre of the world, and is not said to be in motion. In the Republic the pilgrims appear to be looking out from the earth upon the motions of the heavenly bodies; in the Phaedrus, Hestia, who remains immovable in the house of Zeus while the other gods go in procession, is called the first and eldest of the gods, and is probably the symbol of the earth. The silence of Plato in these and in some other passages (Laws) in which he might be expected to speak of the rotation of the earth, is more favourable to the doctrine of its immobility than to the opposite. If he had meant to say that the earth revolves on its axis, he would have said so in distinct words, and have explained the relation of its movements to those of the other heavenly bodies. (5) The meaning of the words 'artificer of day and night' is literally true according to Plato's view. For the alternation of day and night is not produced by the motion of the heavens alone, or by the immobility of the earth alone, but by both together; and that which has the inherent force or energy to remain at rest when all other bodies are moving, may be truly said to act, equally with them. (6) We should not lay too much stress on Aristotle or the writer De Caelo having adopted the other interpretation of the words, although Alexander of Aphrodisias thinks that he could not have been ignorant either of the doctrine of Plato or of the sense which he intended to give to the word (Greek). For the citations of Plato in Aristotle are frequently misinterpreted by him; and he seems hardly ever to have had in his mind the connection in which they occur. In this instance the allusion is very slight, and there is no reason to suppose that the diurnal revolution of the heavens was present to his mind. Hence we need not attri bute to him the error from which we are defending Plato.
  After weighing one against the other all these complicated probabilities, the final conclusion at which we arrive is that there is nearly as much to be said on the one side of the question as on the other, and that we are not perfectly certain, whether, as Bockh and the majority of commentators, ancient as well as modern, are inclined to believe, Plato thought that the earth was at rest in the centre of the universe, or, as Aristotle and Mr. Grote suppose, that it revolved on its axis. Whether we assume the earth to be stationary in the centre of the universe, or to revolve with the heavens, no explanation is given of the variation in the length of days and nights at different times of the year. The relations of the earth and heavens are so indistinct in the Timaeus and so figurative in the Phaedo, Phaedrus and Republic, that we must give up the hope of ascertaining how they were imagined by Plato, if he had any fixed or scientific conception of them at all.
  --
  1. Did Plato derive the legend of Atlantis from an Egyptian source? It may be replied that there is no such legend in any writer previous to Plato; neither in Homer, nor in Pindar, nor in Herodotus is there any mention of an Island of Atlantis, nor any reference to it in Aristotle, nor any citation of an earlier writer by a later one in which it is to be found. Nor have any traces been discovered hitherto in Egyptian monuments of a connexion between Greece and Egypt older than the eighth or ninth century B.C. It is true that Proclus, writing in the fifth century after Christ, tells us of stones and columns in Egypt on which the history of the Island of Atlantis was engraved. The statement may be falsethere are similar tales about columns set up 'by the Canaanites whom Joshua drove out' (Procop.); but even if true, it would only show that the legend, 800 years after the time of Plato, had been transferred to Egypt, and inscribed, not, like other forgeries, in books, but on stone. Probably in the Alexandrian age, when Egypt had ceased to have a history and began to appropriate the legends of other nations, many such monuments were to be found of events which had become famous in that or other countries. The oldest witness to the story is said to be Crantor, a Stoic philosopher who lived a generation later than Plato, and therefore may have borrowed it from him. The statement is found in Proclus; but we require better assurance than Proclus can give us before we accept this or any other statement which he makes.
  Secondly, passing from the external to the internal evidence, we may remark that the story is far more likely to have been invented by Plato than to have been brought by Solon from Egypt. That is another part of his legend which Plato also seeks to impose upon us. The verisimilitude which he has given to the tale is a further reason for suspecting it; for he could easily 'invent Egyptian or any other tales' (Phaedrus). Are not the words, 'The truth of the story is a great advantage,' if we read between the lines, an indication of the fiction? It is only a legend that Solon went to Egypt, and if he did he could not have conversed with Egyptian priests or have read records in their temples. The truth is that the introduction is a mosaic work of small touches which, partly by their minuteness, and also by their seeming probability, win the confidence of the reader. Who would desire better evidence than that of Critias, who had heard the narrative in youth when the memory is strongest at the age of ten from his grandfa ther Critias, an old man of ninety, who in turn had heard it from Solon himself? Is not the famous expression'You Hellenes are ever children and there is no knowledge among you hoary with age,' really a compliment to the Athenians who are described in these words as 'ever young'? And is the thought expressed in them to be attri buted to the learning of the Egyptian priest, and not rather to the genius of Plato? Or when the Egyptian says'Hereafter at our leisure we will take up the written documents and examine in detail the exact truth about these things'what is this but a literary trick by which Plato sets off his narrative? Could any war between Athens and the Island of Atlantis have really coincided with the struggle between the Greeks and Persians, as is sufficiently hinted though not expressly stated in the narrative of Plato? And whence came the tradition to Egypt? or in what does the story consist except in the war between the two rival powers and the submersion of both of them? And how was the tale transferred to the poem of Solon? 'It is not improbable,' says Mr. Grote, 'that Solon did leave an unfinished Egyptian poem' (Plato). But are probabilities for which there is not a tittle of evidence, and which are without any parallel, to be deemed worthy of attention by the critic? How came the poem of Solon to disappear in antiquity? or why did Plato, if the whole narrative was known to him, break off almost at the beginning of it?
  --
  The commentary of Proclus on the Timaeus is a wonderful monument of the silliness and prolixity of the Alexandrian Age. It extends to about thirty pages of the book, and is thirty times the length of the original. It is surprising that this voluminous work should have found a translator (Thomas Taylor, a kindred spirit, who was himself a Neo-Platonist, after the fashion, not of the fifth or sixteenth, but of the nineteenth century A.D.). The commentary is of little or no value, either in a philosophical or philological point of view. The writer is unable to explain particular passages in any precise manner, and he is equally incapable of grasping the whole. He does not take words in their simple meaning or sentences in their natural connexion. He is thinking, not of the context in Plato, but of the contemporary Pythagorean philosophers and their wordy strife. He finds nothing in the text which he does not bring to it. He is full of Porphyry, Iamblichus and Plotinus, of misapplied logic, of misunderstood grammar, and of the Orphic theology.
  Although such a work can contri bute little or nothing to the understanding of Plato, it throws an interesting light on the Alexandrian times; it realizes how a philosophy made up of words only may create a deep and widespread enthusiasm, how the forms of logic and rhetoric may usurp the place of reason and truth, how all philosophies grow faded and discoloured, and are patched and made up again like worn-out garments, and retain only a second-hand existence. He who would study this degeneracy of philosophy and of the Greek mind in the original cannot do better than devote a few of his days and nights to the commentary of Proclus on the Timaeus.
  A very different account must be given of the short work entitled 'Timaeus Locrus,' which is a brief but clear analysis of the Timaeus of Plato, omitting the introduction or dialogue and making a few small additions. It does not allude to the original from which it is taken; it is quite free from mysticism and Neo-Platonism. In length it does not exceed a fifth part of the Timaeus. It is written in the Doric dialect, and contains several words which do not occur in classical Greek. No other indication of its date, except this uncertain one of language, appears in it. In several places the writer has simplified the language of Plato, in a few others he has embellished and exaggerated it. He generally preserves the thought of the original, but does not copy the words. On the whole this little tract faithfully reflects the meaning and spirit of the Timaeus.

WORDNET














IN WEBGEN [10000/0]




convenience portal:
recent: Section Maps - index table - favorites
Savitri -- Savitri extended toc
Savitri Section Map -- 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
authors -- Crowley - Peterson - Borges - Wilber - Teresa - Aurobindo - Ramakrishna - Maharshi - Mother
places -- Garden - Inf. Art Gallery - Inf. Building - Inf. Library - Labyrinth - Library - School - Temple - Tower - Tower of MEM
powers -- Aspiration - Beauty - Concentration - Effort - Faith - Force - Grace - inspiration - Presence - Purity - Sincerity - surrender
difficulties -- cowardice - depres. - distract. - distress - dryness - evil - fear - forget - habits - impulse - incapacity - irritation - lost - mistakes - obscur. - problem - resist - sadness - self-deception - shame - sin - suffering
practices -- Lucid Dreaming - meditation - project - programming - Prayer - read Savitri - study
subjects -- CS - Cybernetics - Game Dev - Integral Theory - Integral Yoga - Kabbalah - Language - Philosophy - Poetry - Zen
6.01 books -- KC - ABA - Null - Savitri - SA O TAOC - SICP - The Gospel of SRK - TIC - The Library of Babel - TLD - TSOY - TTYODAS - TSZ - WOTM II
8 unsorted / add here -- Always - Everyday - Verbs


change css options:
change font "color":
change "background-color":
change "font-family":
change "padding":
change "table font size":
last updated: 2022-04-29 21:02:36
5120 site hits