Top PDF Marsilio Ficino and the Religion of the Philosophers

Marsilio Ficino and the Religion of the Philosophers

Marsilio Ficino and the Religion of the Philosophers

nature through philosophical argument and speculation. Serving God means participating in rituals and observing commandments whose justification may or may not be evident to the believer. It bears repeating that what is being attempted here is the elucidation of ideal types, types which would describe perfectly no single historical theologian in the classical or in post-classical traditions. Most would lie somewhere between the extremes. Avicenna, Maimonides and Aquinas would be more or less in the middle of the continuum, as theologians who accept the guidance of revelation but also accept that revelation can and should be interpreted by philosophy, especially where the latter can produce demonstrative proofs. On the other hand most of ancient pagan philosophers of the Presocratic, classical and Hellenistic periods would be close to the pole occupied by philosophical religion. One could also situate at that pole later thinkers like Alfarabi, Averroes, and Western Averroists like John of Jandun, as well as radicals like Pietro Pompanazzi. Such men defer officially to traditional religion as to a law with which one may not agree but is nevertheless bound to respect. Toward the opposite pole, that of traditional religion, one could place Augustine, most orthodox Christian theologians in antiquity, and most Franciscan thinkers of the Middle Ages, for example William of Ockham, as well as the Renaissance Platonists Nicholas of Cusa and Marsilio Ficino.
Show more

29 Read more

Masterpieces of Muslim Philosophers

Masterpieces of Muslim Philosophers

Jaber Ibn Hyaan divided science into two forms: the first being the knowledge of religion and the second the science of 15 Al Ahwani, Ahmed Fawed, (1985), AlKindi Arab Philosopher, Egyptian Foundation for Book, Cairo, p 271. 16Al-Kindī , Abu Yūsuf Yaʻqūb ibn ʼIsḥāq aṣ-Ṣabbāḥ(1980) ‘Philosophical Letters’, An investigation carried out by Abdul Hadi Abu Ridah, part1 ,Cairo, Egypt, ,p37.

6 Read more

Rhetoric for philosophers: An examination of the place of rhetoric in philosophy

Rhetoric for philosophers: An examination of the place of rhetoric in philosophy

appears to have provided the most sustained and explicit argument for this interpretation. He presents the history of political thought in Florence up to the Quattrocento as a struggle between two rival republican ideologies: (i) the republicanism of the communal era (the elder of the ideologies), which was rooted in the guilds, favouring wide participation in government councils and defining political representation as a function of class and corporate identity; and (ii) the oligarchic republicanism of the post-Ciompi era (1378), which undermined the legitimacy of communal corporate politics, favouring the politics of consensus and the participation of only a select few wealthy old families in the government. Leonardo Bruni and his humanist contemporaries, according to Najemy, helped formalise and refine oligarchic republicanism. How? By turning it into a philosophy of ‘dutiful passivity*, in which citizens who had once received office according to the established rights of their class, could now only receive office as a reward for their ‘personal virtue’, and attachment to powerful local civic families and their interests. Civic humanism, therefore, is a consolation prize with which the supporters of the failed guild-based vision of politics rationalised their political acquiescence to a restricted oligarchy. In other words, humanistic exaltation of the scholar statesman and humanistic interpretations of wealth, history, and ideal government buttressed and extended the political implications of Cosimo’s reputation for prudence, wisdom, generosity, and learning. Civic humanism, in short, accommodated Medici p o w e rs Moreover, recent work by Jill Kraye, Arthur Field, and James Hankins has considerably undermined the Neoplatonic argument put forward by Garin and his followers. They have all argued that the roots of Neoplatonism were already solidly established by the time Cosimo began to commission Platonic works from Marsilio Ficino. Kraye has suggested that humanists such as Ficino were drawn to the study of Plato Italy, ed. A. Molho, K. Raaflaub, J. Emlen. (Stuttgart, 1991), pp. 169-88; and M. Jurdjevic, ‘Civic Humanism and the Rise of the Medici’, RQ, 52:4 (1999), pp. 994-1020. According to Najemy, another important supporter of civic humanism as a ‘strategically pursued legitimation of the hegemony of the ruling group’ is Niccolo Machiavelli (‘Baron’s Machiavelli and Renaissance Republicanism’, AHR, 101 [1996], pp. 119-29, at p. 126).
Show more

254 Read more

Ideas of spiritual ascent and theurgy from the ancients to Ficino and Pico

Ideas of spiritual ascent and theurgy from the ancients to Ficino and Pico

Abstract The relationship between religion and magic has held a precarious position in the history of Ideas and ecclesiastical history. It is often held that religion petitions while magic coerces. Marsilio Ficino (1433 –1499) translated many Platonic, Neoplatonic and Hermetic texts into Latin reintroducing Platonic theology to the Italian renaissance humanists. Giovanni Pico della Mirandola (1463-1494), utilising Ficino’s translations and incorporating Jewish Kabbalist ideas, gave birth to Christian Cabala through the publication of his nine hundred theses to be delivered in Rome. By exploring the idea of spiritual ascent and its relationship to the Neoplatonic practice of theurgy, it may enable a deeper understanding of the complexities between the Renaissance understanding of religion and magic. At the heart of this discussion for Ficino and Pico is a quest for divine truth, which centres on their understanding of mis-dated texts and the development of the prisca theologia. In understanding the way both men
Show more

133 Read more

Philosophy of God in The View of Philosophers

Philosophy of God in The View of Philosophers

Not only William James, this phenomenon is also recognized by Karen Armstrong, an observer of world religions, specifically Semitic religions (Abrahamic Religion). In Armstrong's research, someone who has experienced the initiation or revelation of the phenomenon behind the material world will not be able to put it into words. When he tried to spread the experience into words, he couldn't help but distort it. 31 Huston Smith emphasized the fundamental principle; let alone factually imaginatively it cannot describe exactly how the existence of the intermediate (spiritual realm) itself. 32
Show more

20 Read more

The Disagreement between Avicenna and al-Ghazali on the Issue of the Pre-eternity of the Universe, how their Arguments Originated from Greek Philosophers and their Effect on Muslim Philosophers

The Disagreement between Avicenna and al-Ghazali on the Issue of the Pre-eternity of the Universe, how their Arguments Originated from Greek Philosophers and their Effect on Muslim Philosophers

18 perception. The truth of the above can be seen from the frequent strategy of Islamophobes in our time – they realise that Muslims as a group, are more ‘practising’ and more willing to defend the authenticity of their texts – not just the Quran but also the often spurious fatwas and hadith of sources effectively treated as infallible – Imams like Ghazali, Shafi or Bukhari. This banal tendency is very effectively weaponised by Islamophobes, who when ignoring violent passages from the Bible or other religions, merely point out that no Christian follows these or believes in them – effectively giving the ‘Judeo-Christian’ civilization a free pass because hardly anyone in the public eye really believes in its foundational dogmas or texts any longer. Hence the frequent references from these people to show violent hadith and then to opinion polls from the Muslim world claiming to show the percentages of people who ‘believe’ in these hadith or more often ‘Sharia’. This is a perverse and false argument, but there is a need amongst these religious clergy who then affect the entire Muslim population that religion be exclusivist and difficult to rationalise, difficult to practice and nigh on impossible to defend to show how ‘authentic’ and heroic they are (for example, because of the idiosyncratic and difficult way they dress or arrange their facial hair and social interactions) and how much ‘faith’ they display. But the whole process is demonstrably false – Muslims have been largely persuaded to defend to the hilt every hadith of ‘Bukhari’, every ruling and positon of scholars, without ever knowing what these are and if such defence is necessary or traditional: had they been properly informed about either, by their self-appointed religious leaders. It is due to this that when past scholars such as al-Ghazali have relegated philosophers such as Avicenna to the fringes of the religion and argue that he is a heretic, this affects religious leaders, who in turn affect the psychology and opinions of the rest of Muslims.
Show more

104 Read more

Monstrous Melancholy: Ficino and the Physiological Causes of Atheism

Monstrous Melancholy: Ficino and the Physiological Causes of Atheism

confirmed their life’s sanctity both with everlasting works and at their own mortal peril, were just pretending. There have been very many other most learned philosophers, barbarian, Greek, and Latin, who, though they have not attained the same purity of life as those I recalled earlier, have led nonetheless honorable and upright lives and never hesitated to favor religious observances. It is possible that some of them pretended to some degree, yet I do not believe that all pretended or that all were wanting in religion among those who did pretend. For it is difficult to cast our nature entirely aside. It is reported that Diagoras, Dicaearchus, Epicurus, and Lucretius were impious beyond others, but that occasionally they too were compelled by nature to assent to sundry religious observances, as their books testify. But just as they raised various objections against religion without being punished, so, if the impious were in the majority, many other philosophers too would have openly spewed out the poison of their godlessness. But not to admit, as many do, one or other religious cult is not the same as rejecting all religion entirely. Very few have attempted the latter and they have done so indeed by voicing doubts rather than rooted convictions. 46
Show more

18 Read more

Early eighteenth century British moral philosophers and the possibility of virtue

Early eighteenth century British moral philosophers and the possibility of virtue

Locke then proceeded to work his way through the historical reasons for Christ’s appearance. Either blinded by ‘sense and lust’, or by ‘a careless inadvertency’, we had failed to use our natural reason to look at the works of nature that clearly ‘evidence’ a benevolent deity. Fear and suspicion of a superior being had led us into the clutches of false polytheistic priests, who led us further into darkness, ignorance, vice and superstition, through ‘wrong notions and invented rites’. Our natural reason was at this point of no use, since reason had been driven from religion and was ‘judged to have nothing to do in the case’. Fear and superstition reigned within our minds and reason, which would have informed us of the existence of ‘the one invisible true God’, except that through our own misuse reason now lacked sufficient authority within our own minds to ‘prevail upon the virtuous’. Lacking a true idea of God, we also lacked proper knowledge of our duty. 131 The Mosaic Revelation was contained within that community and did not
Show more

243 Read more

The Influence of Modern Western Philosophers on Iqbāl

The Influence of Modern Western Philosophers on Iqbāl

In the third chapter, there is a story demonstrating how self-denial (i.e., fading, negating sensuality, leaving sensual pleasures, and condescending to a poor and short life, having the attitude of being a lamb, and selecting the dervish way) is an invention of defeated nations who aim to weaken the morale and the nature of the dominant nations. He tells the story of a herd of sheep that resided in a pasture abundant with food and other blessings, and never needed to work. Then, one day, a pride of lions came out of their lair and dominated the herd of sheep and deprived them of their freedom. Years passed by like this until one of the sheep … devised a strategy to protect the herd against the lions. He said to himself that one could not preach the wolf’s character or the lion’s bravery to the sheep; however, “to make the furious tiger a sheep — that is possible.” So he claimed prophethood and that he had brought a new religion
Show more

18 Read more

Cosmic harmony, demons, and the mnemonic power of music in Renaissance Florence : the case of Marsilio Ficino

Cosmic harmony, demons, and the mnemonic power of music in Renaissance Florence : the case of Marsilio Ficino

Secondly, in the Timaeus commentary, Ficino is often at pains to refute the opinion of the ‘natural philosophers’ (physici), a term which, as in Proclus, refers to the Aristotelian philosophers. Thus, regarding the structure of the Universe, he defends the view, against ‘certain natural philosophers’ (nonnulli physici), that both the sublunar and the divine worlds are composed of the four elements. Here he is evidently arguing against Aristotle, who had stated that only the sublunar world is made up of the four elements, whilst the superlunar world is made up of one single element, the fifth element, or ether. Aristotle had argued that in the absence of air, this made the production of sound in the intelligible world impossible, and this invalidated the theory of cosmic harmony. 22 Elsewhere in the Timaeus commentary Ficino rejects the calumnies of ‘some people’, who argue that the soul might be formed of mathematical rather than ideal numbers, evidently alluding to Aristotle’s rejection of ideal numbers. 23 For, Ficino explains, the soul could not have access to the harmony of the Universe if it did not possess within itself the very causes of arithmetic proportions. 24 Finally, in his Phaedrus commentary, Ficino clearly links the process
Show more

32 Read more

A modest proposal:commentary on “A role for philosophers, sociologists and bioethicists in revising the DSM”

A modest proposal:commentary on “A role for philosophers, sociologists and bioethicists in revising the DSM”

Rather than Kayali Browne’s committee I shall suggest a more modest proposal. While Kayali Browne focusses on how hard and deep moral questions might be dealt with, I think the priority is to consider how tractable issues might be better addressed. I shall suggest how some value-based problems with the DSM might be avoided fairly easily, and then consider the particular roles that philosophers might play in revising the DSM.

7 Read more

What Can Philosophers Learn from Psychopathy?

What Can Philosophers Learn from Psychopathy?

response to distress cues. What does this amount to? Compared to ordinary people, psychopaths experience less fear, anxiety, and defensiveness in face of suffering others. There are many reasons to think that this is highly relevant to the ease with which psychopaths violate harm norms. But if this is right, it means that this type of response in ordinary people may underpin their adherence to moral and legal norms too. It is not a response that has been accorded much attention by moral psychologists or philosophers, however. Perhaps it is time for this to change. Second, we have no basis upon which to conclude that psychopaths are incapable of forming a conception of reason based on their rather subtle and specific learning impairments. But we do have reasons to think that fear and anxiety play important roles in learning and good decision-making, and this has ramifications for how to think of moral psychology (see also Kurth 2018). Third, what is emerging is a complex picture of various impairments in abilities that are imperfectly instantiated in the population at large. For instance, people are more or less empathic. Moreover, the empathy impairment psychopaths (primary psychopaths?) suffer from may have more to do with their being relatively uninterested in others’ suffering than with their ability to feel distress at others’ distress. How to conceptualize such a deficit within theories of responsibility and punishment is an urgent and fascinating problem. Exploring this issue further may help us to think of abilities themselves quite differently. Fourth, disaggregating subtypes of common mental disorders may turn out to be crucial for drawing more wide-ranging conclusions from psychological results with such populations. There is a real possibility that the psychopathy literature is currently of limited help in revealing the true correlations between immoral behavior, moral judgment, and psychological capacities, such as attention, anxiety, empathy, and learning. That ought to make us a bit more careful about positing our own favored causation model—no empathy, hence no true moral understanding, say—to a complex phenomenon such as psychopathy.
Show more

16 Read more

German Philosophers: Kant, Hegel, Schelling, Nietzsche, and Heidegger

German Philosophers: Kant, Hegel, Schelling, Nietzsche, and Heidegger

philosophers. What is nature of philosophy? What the nature of philosophical thinking? Great philosophers altered our understanding of what it means to do philosophy. What is living and what is dead in Heidegger’s and agar una’s philosophy? Heidegger has some intrinsic counterdictions (inconsistencies) and problems within his philosophical thinking – some of which he sees himself at various times in his development. In agar una’s work on “Averting the arguments” (Vigrahavyavartani) he states his opponents twenty verses and replies. The main attack is that Nagarjuna (he lived in the 2-3 AD in southern India, he was a Buddhist) has to assume self-existence in order to attack the self-existence, in other words it is an attack against agar una’s self-consistence in his philosophical thinking. To show that a philosopher’s philosophical thinking is self-counterdiction is one of the first ways to attack a philosopher. Nagarjuna deployed the so called Catuskoti (fourfold) logic, known as tetralemma logic. Example would be: “Everything is real and is not real. Both real and not real. either real nor not real. This is Lord Buddha's teaching.” (MMK XVIII:8). agar una often uses his
Show more

235 Read more

Latin American Philosophers: Some Recent Challenges to Their Intellectual Character

Latin American Philosophers: Some Recent Challenges to Their Intellectual Character

comparing philosophy in the Americas. His critique of Latin American philosophy focused on the cognitive-skills dimension of its practitioners, finding their reasoning affected by sophistry and a kind of literary thinking far remove from the strict rules followed so closely by North American philosophers. Consistent with this assessment is Cannabrava’s explanation of the recep- tion of continental philosophy in Latin America, which at the time meant mostly contemporary offshoots of German idealism construed broadly to include phenomenology and incipient exis- tentialism. Cannabrava believed that Latin American philoso- phers were attracted to continental philosophy precisely because of its “lack of intelligibility,” and “its metaphysical abuses and frequent violation of the rules of correct thinking” (1949, p. 114). He held that Latin American philosophy was at its worst when addressing issues in philosophy of science, a judgment supported by evidence from the Mexican philosopher Antonio Caso’s writings on science. On Cannabrava’s view, they exhib- ited a complete lack of “real acquaintance with [science’s] de- velopment or technique” (1949, p. 117). All of these shortcom- ings led Cannabrava to lament that “[i]n Latin America we do not have philosophers like Morris Cohen, Victor Lenze, Ernest Nagel, and F. S. C. Northrop, who have studied the sources of science and followed closely its development...” (1949, p. 117).
Show more

15 Read more

Philosophers are Mortal: Inferring the Truth of Unseen Facts

Philosophers are Mortal: Inferring the Truth of Unseen Facts

A large database of facts is queried for candidate entries that may be similar to the query fact see Section 3.1; the similarity of each of these facts to the query fact is computed usin[r]

10 Read more

Aprinciple, philosophers tell us, is the beginning of an action. As

Aprinciple, philosophers tell us, is the beginning of an action. As

Teamwork is itself both a process and a principle. Teams provide, in the adult learning experience, a quality of safety that is effective and helpful. The assurance of safety and shared [r]

26 Read more

Education Personification Theory on the Historicity of Classical Greek Philosophers

Education Personification Theory on the Historicity of Classical Greek Philosophers

This study puts forward for debate this question, “Did ancient Greek philosophers actually exist?” There are re- liable evidence laid or put forward recently by historians to identify factual historical personalities. Simply put virtually out of every ten names of ancient philosophers, nine of such names means exactly those philosophers assertions “Are these mere coincidences or otherwise?” For example, Heraclitus means fire; Parmenides is per- manence, Socrates is sorcery; Pythagoras was being fortune teller (Greek “Puthon”, Hebrew “Sophis”, i.e. ser- pent spirit of fortune telling) Aland & Newman, 1983: p. 157. Pythagoras is being among the first to inquire or foretell through the pythia occult-Orpheas of Dionysus. Anaxagoras, Anaximander and Anaximenes, all means deep in the past, i.e. ancient thoughts on the existence of God or gods (Ana; in the past) menes (meni= god; or the gods who counts your number of years (Hebrew “Sapher or Sopher” is learned enough to count) BDB, 2007, pp 704-708, while Plato has much with the Hebrew “Philaot” (i.e. Nephes or Nephili) or the soul, or the extraor- dinary. Aristotle is what the name suggests; i.e. Areo (Hill, height, perfectionist or a master) i.e. someone with a great mind or thinking ability (Hebrew “Aron” i.e. crafty or cunning) Hebrew Old Testament, 2005.
Show more

8 Read more

Journey Metaphors in (Three) Early Greek Philosophers

Journey Metaphors in (Three) Early Greek Philosophers

Whereas jour- ney metaphors are traditionally employed according to a standard pattern that depicts those who aim to know as travelers, their method of inquiry as a path they follow, and[r]

27 Read more

Christopher McCann- Four Phenomenological Philosophers

Christopher McCann- Four Phenomenological Philosophers

Although an examination of this extremely difficult final section falls outside the bounds of this study, I have devoted a considerable amount of attention to it in a section of my Prese[r]

232 Read more

Show all 1926 documents...