Peitho. Examina Antiqua, nr 1(10), 2019


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    Adventures of the Mind: Livio Rossetti’s Other Parmenides
    (Wydawnictwo Naukowe Instytutu Filozofii UAM, 2019) Zucchello, Dario
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    From Democritus to Bertrand Russell and Back
    (Wydawnictwo Naukowe Instytutu Filozofii UAM, 2019) Motte, André
    Although Bertrand Russell is probably most famous for his “logi­cal atomism,” it is his ethical thought that this article will attempt to contrast with the ethics of the founder of the ancient atomism: Democritus of Abdera. Russell has himself suggested certain affinity here. More concerned with practice than theory, both philosophers advocate a certain teleological and eudemonistic morality; furthermore, they both adopt the same approaches to various related topics. Yet, what had only been outlined by Democritus was extensively developed by Russell. Hence, it is worth examining whether there is any deeper common ground between the two: can Russell’s clarity throw some light on Democritus’ fragments?
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    On the Origins of the Very First Principle as Infinite: The Hierarchy of the Infinite in Damascius and Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite
    (Wydawnictwo Naukowe Instytutu Filozofii UAM, 2019) Ottobrini, Tiziano F.
    This paper discusses the theoretical relationship between the views of Damascius and those of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite. While Damascius’ De principiis is a bold treatise devoted to investigating the hypermetaphysics of apophatism, it anticipates various theoretical positions put forward by Dionysius the Areopagite. The present paper focuses on the following. First, Damascius is the only ancient philoso­pher who systematically demonstrates the first principle to be infinite (traditional Greek thought tended to regard the arkhē as finite). Second, Damascius modifies the concept and in several important passages shows the infinite to be superior and prior to the finite (previously this assumption was held only by Melissus and, sporadically, by Gregory of Nyssa and Plotinus). Third, Damascius’ theory of being (infinite, endless and ultrarational) is the strongest ancient articulation of the nature of the One which is a clear prefiguration of the negative theology developed by Dionysius the Areopagite.
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    Putting Cosmogony into Words: The Neoplatonists on Metaphysics and Discourse (logos)
    (Wydawnictwo Naukowe Instytutu Filozofii UAM, 2019) Motta, Anna
    The present paper focuses on some aspects of the Neoplatonist literary-metaphysical theory, which has clearly been expressed in the anony­mous Prolegomena to Plato’s philosophy and further confirmed in Proclus’ exegesis of the Timaeus. Thus, this contribution, examines and compares several passages from the Prolegomena and from Proclus’ Commentary on the Timaeus with a view to showing that it is legiti­mate to speak of a certain cosmogony of the Platonic dialogue that is analogous to that of the macrocosm. Moreover, the analogy between macrocosm and microcosm makes it possible to further investigate the similarity between the λόγος-ζῷον of the Demiurge and that of Timaeus, on the one hand, and the reality which the λόγος expresses, on the other. This similarity turns out to be both structural/morphological and content-related/semantic. Thus, by combining the natural and theo­logical science, the analysis of the “generation” of the macrocosm and microcosm brings out the strongly analogical nature of Plato’s dialogues, which is particularly visible in the Timaeus.
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    The Self as Image and Suddenness: Some Remarks on Plotinus’ Noetic Life
    (Wydawnictwo Naukowe Instytutu Filozofii UAM, 2019) Lavecchia, Salvatore
    This article focuses on certain dimensions of Plotinus’ notion of the noetic self, which so far have not received sufficient scholarly atten­tion. The evidence of Enn. V 8 makes clear the assumption about the inexhaustible generativity of the noetic self. This generativity implies an intimate relation with the notions of image and suddenness: the former is intended as a medium of unconditional self-transparency, whereas the latter is understood as pointing to the unlimited newness that is char­acteristic of the noetic life, which, according to Plotinus, consists in an indissoluble unity of identity and alterity (Enn. VI 7.13). The aforesaid notions make it reasonable to view Plotinus’ concept of noetic self as pointing to a predominantly relational and dynamic ontology, in which essentialism presupposes no staticity whatsoever, but can rather be seen as a perspective that leads to the development of a harmonious and non-narcissistic creativity.