Proclus on Nature : philosophy of nature and its methods in Proclus' Commentary on Plato's Timaeus

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Proclus on Nature : philosophy of nature and its methods in Proclus' Commentary on Plato's Timaeus

Type: Doctoral Thesis
Title: Proclus on Nature : philosophy of nature and its methods in Proclus' Commentary on Plato's Timaeus
Author: Martijn, Marije
Publisher: Faculty of Philosophy, Leiden University
Issue Date: 2008-04-03
Keywords: Iconicity
Mathematization
Metaphysics
Philosophy of nature
Proclus
Scientific method
Timaeus
Abstract: One of the hardest questions to answer for a (Neo)platonist is to what extent and how the changing and unreliable world of sense perception can itself be an object of scientific knowledge. My dissertation is a study of the answer given to that question by the Neoplatonist Proclus (Athens, 411-485) in his Commentary on Plato’s Timaeus. I present a new explanation of Proclus’ concept of nature and show that philosophy of nature consists of several related subdisciplines matching the ontological stratification of nature. Moreover, I demonstrate that for Proclus philosophy of nature is a science, albeit a hypothetical one, which takes geometry as its methodological paradigm. I also offer an explanation of Proclus’ view of what is later called the mathematization of physics, i.e. the role of the substance of mathematics, as opposed to its method, in explaining the natural world. Finally, I discuss Proclus’ views of the discourse of philosophy of nature and its iconic character.
Description: Promotores: F.A.J. de Haas, D. Th. Runia
With summary in Dutch
Faculty: Faculteit der Wijsbegeerte
Citation: Martijn, M., 2008, Doctoral thesis, Leiden University
Sponsor: NWO
Handle: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/12664
 

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