Esoteric Philosophy: part three

An occult investigation of Plato's philosophy, his Academy, modern philosophy and Hylozoism


In part one we told you about the principal founders of Greek Philosophy and their ideas about spirit, matter and man. In part two we examined these ideas further in the light of the doctrines of Plato and the Neoplatonists. In this final part we will look at what is called 'Modern Philosophy' and some of its main exponents. We will also consider the attempts of some modern scientists to reconcile their spiritual beliefs with the doctrines and theories of material science.

In our first two afterwords we briefly examined the life of Plato and reviewed his principal writings and philosophy. In this final afterword we shall consider his ideas further in connection with the esoteric School he founded—known as the 'Academy'—and its contribution to the survival of the Ancient Mystery Schools. Finally, we examine the ancient philosophical concept of Hylozoism. If you have not read our two previous articles, please do so before proceeding further or you will not reap the full benefits of this investigation.

The eclipse of Neoplatonism

For a thousand years after the last of the Neoplatonic Schools of Athens were closed by the emperor Justinian in 529 A.D., philosophy made no real advance, no essentially new ideas about the constitution of nature, the workings of the mind, or the purpose of life were put forward. Why was this so? The answer lies in the previous sentence: the Schools of Athens were closed; the great Teachers were no more; the real secrets (which already had been withdrawn gradually as we learnt in the previous parts of this investigation) were now entirely hidden; and mankind had to struggle on in the twilight as best it could.

A certain amount of progress was made in ordinary 'civilisation'. The Roman Empire was extended far beyond its ancient frontiers; and, although much ground was lost in Asia and Africa, more than the equivalent was gained in Northern Europe. Within Europe itself the gradual abolition of slavery and the increasing dignity of peaceful labour gave a wider diffusion to common culture, combined with, perhaps, a larger sense of human fellowship than any but the best minds of Greece and Rome had felt. Also the arts of war and peace were in some ways almost revolutionised. The influence of Christianity has often been credited with this progress; or, rather of the Catholic Church. There is a certain amount of truth in this, but it is not the whole truth.

The Church entered into a heritage it did not create, in many ways actually destroying much of the wisdom of the Ancients, as we have explained in many of our articles. The slowing down of speculation coincided with the establishment of Christianity in Athens, and none of the Schools was so set against innovation—and progress—as that of Epicurus, falsely supposed to have been a home of free-thought. In the last Greek system of Philosophy—Neoplatonism—which we discussed in part two, theology reigned supreme; and during the two and a half centuries of its existence no real advance on the teachings of Plotinus was made.

Neoplatonism, when first constituted had incorporated a large Aristotelian element, the expulsion of which had been accomplished by its last great master; Proclus; and the emerging Catholic Church took over metaphysics under what seemed a Platonic form—the more welcome as Platonic philosophy gave its creeds the independent support of pure reason. This support extended beyond a future life and went down to the deepest mysteries of revealed faith. For, according to the Platonic doctrine of ideas, it was quite in order that there should be a divine unity existing independently of the three divine persons composing it; that the idea of humanity should be combined with one of the three persons; and that the same idea, being both one with and distinct from Adam, should involve all mankind in the guilt of his supposed transgression and 'fall'. Thus the Church began with a strong prejudice in favour of Plato, which continued to influence its doctrines for many centuries. This tendency came under sharp attack in the 9th century when first great theologian, Johannes Scotus Eriugena (815-877), was condemned for heresy by adopting the pantheistic metaphysics of Neoplatonism.

Among his many 'crimes' was his firm belief that the Eucharist was a merely symbolical or commemorative rite, in which of course he was quite correct. His great work, On the Division of Nature was condemned by Pope Honorius III (1225), who described it as "swarming with the worms of heretical perversity." Yet, all he had done was to restate the truths of Plato in his own words by declaring that there are four divisions of Nature. (1) that which creates and is not created; (2) that which is created and creates; (3) that which is created and does not create; (4) that which is neither created nor creates. There is very little wrong with this from the perspective of Occult Science; hence it had to be suppressed if the dogmas of the emerging Church were to triumph over the metaphysical doctrines of its opponents.

school of athens

Raphael — The School of Athens — fresco in the Vatican, 1509-1511

Giordano Bruno (1548-1600)

Giordano Bruno affirmed the principle of Heraclitus that opposites are One; every infinitesimal part of the space-filling Aether is no less the soul of the universe than the Monad of Monads itself. His theory of monads is only expounded in his Latin works, for the most part ill-written and hopelessly obscure. It seems possible that by the monads Bruno sometimes means the infinitesimal parts into which the Aether of space may be divided. In reality, as H. P. Blavatsky taught, a monad is a living entity, such as an Atom, a Man, or the Ruling Spirit of a Planet, or the presiding Deity of a solar system, or of the entire Universe. All the ideas of the Greek philosophers we have discussed so far, from Anaximander to Plotinus, can be traced in the system of Bruno. And while he represents the philosophical Renaissance in an eminent degree, he heads the two lines of speculation which, separately or combined, run through the whole history of modern metaphysics—the monistic, and what is now called the pluralistic tendency. With none of the modern philosophers, except, perhaps Hegel to some extent, have the two been perfectly balanced; and in Bruno himself the leaning is distinctly towards plurality, his Supreme Monad being a mere survival from the Neoplatonic One.

Francis Bacon (1561-1626)

Bacon has been described as being "By profession a lawyer, by taste a scientific enquirer, by character a seeker after wealth and power, by natural genius an immortal master of words." To what extent all this is correct we would not like to say; but we certainly salute him as a great master of wisdom. He was neither the greatest and wisest of all mankind, nor the meanest, as he has been variously described. He loved mankind and tried hard to serve it, devoting a truly philosophical intellect to that end. By reforming scientific investigation he aimed at an immense extension of man's power over nature, through acquiring a complete knowledge of her secrets. Unfortunately, intellect alone proved unequal to that mighty task. He passes for a great upholder of the principle that truth can only be learned by experience. But his philosophy starts by setting that principle at defiance. He took all knowledge for his province but omitted from his survey the rather important subject of knowledge itself, its (known) limits and laws.

The later Renaissance was an age of intense scientific activity, energised, in the first instance, by a revival of Greek learning. Even before the middle of the 16th century great advances had been made in algebra, trigonometry, astronomy, mineralogy, botany, anatomy and physiology. Before the publication of Bacon's Novum Organum in 1620, Napier (1550-1617) had invented (or rather re-discovered) logarithms, Galileo (1564-1642) was reconstituting physics, Gilbert (1544-1603) had created the science of magnetism, and Harvey (1578-1657) had discovered the circulation of the blood. These were facts that Bacon took no pains to study; he either ignores, slights or denies the work done by his illustrious predecessors and contemporaries. That he rejected the Copernican theory with scorn is an exaggeration; but he never accepted it, notwithstanding arguments that the best astronomers of his time found convincing; and the longer he lived the more unfavourable became his opinion of its merit.

Tycho Brahe's wonderful mass of observations, with the splendid generalisations based on them by Kepler, are never mentioned in Bacon's writings. Nor does he seem to have known or understood heliocentric astronomy, as Bruno perfectly saw; and this ignorance left Bacon mired in the bonds of medieval philosophy. He especially hated and detested Aristotle who excited his hostility by identifying Forms with Final Causes. Bacon disliked any theory tending to glorify the existing arrangements of Nature as perfect and unalterable achievements. This aversion found its expression in his unfinished utopian novel, the New Atlantis (published in 1627), wherein he describes artificial mines producing artificial metals, plants raised without seeds, contrivances for turning one plant or tree into another, for prolonging the lives of animals after the removal of particular organs, flying machines, submarines, and perpetual motions. In short, he anticipated both Jules Verne and H. G. Wells as well as many of the discoveries of modern Science.

The classic revival of the Renaissance did not bring back the Greek spirit of moderation and ethics. On the contrary, the new world, the new astronomy, the new monarchy, and the new religion conspired to create such a sense of worldly power, in contradistinction to spiritual wisdom, such as the world had never known before. Bacon strikes the same note when he values knowledge as a source of power over Nature, which for Greek philosophy meant rather a lesson in self-restraint and a profound knowledge of and obedience to, the Laws of Nature. In other words—the Ancient Wisdom as opposed to modern folly!

Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679)

This idea receives a further development from Bacon's chief successor in English Philosophy, Thomas Hobbes, in whose system love of power figures as the very essence of human nature, the self-conscious manifestation of that Motion which is the real substance of the physical world. Hobbes shares with Bacon the belief that all knowledge comes from experience, besides making it clearer than his predecessor that experience of the world comes through our external senses alone. This notion was not new, for Aristotle said much the same as we saw in part two of this investigation. The idea of power received its full development from Spinoza; but only in association with other ideas derived from the philosopher Descartes, the founder of the so-called 'modern metaphysics', which has in reality no connection with true metaphysics at all as we shall see later on.

The principal modern metaphysicians were Descartes (1596-1650), Malebranche (1638-1715), Spinoza (1632-1677) and Leibnitz (1646-1761). We do not have time to do more than select a very few of their ideas which have a direct bearing on our theme which, as you will remember, is esoteric philosophy.

René Descartes (1596-1650)

The French philosopher René Descartes saw in the pineal gland the Seat of the Soul. He said: "Although the Soul is joined to every part of the body (which 'soul' is of course the Higher Mind), there is one special portion of the latter in which the 'Soul' exercises its functions more specially than in any other." And, as neither the heart, nor yet the brain could be that 'special' locality, he concluded that it was that little gland which was tied to the brain. The wise ancient Egyptians, like others before them, placed the Seat of the Soul in the heart, and this is correct. So Descartes was wrong, as he was wrong about many other things. But he was right in one sense, for the Pineal Gland can be developed through certain exercises for the use of the Higher Mind, so that it can see beyond the material, physical world.

The followers of Descartes—the Cartesians—postulated the existence of what they called 'innate ideas', but Locke tried to destroy this idea by asserting that there can be no ideas until the mind has come into contact with environing agencies. Locke, as we shall see was completely wrong. Leibnitz, equally with Locke, rejected the Cartesian doctrine of innate ideas, he being sure that there can be no knowledge until the mind has been awakened into activity by the presence of objects to be cognised. But Leibnitz added that in each act of cognition there is an element furnished by the mind as well as an element furnished by the environment, and that the subject is not passive, but cooperates actively with the object. This is both right and wrong from the perspective of Occult Science as we shall now see; please pay careful attention.

Now the perceiving Higher Self or Mind (the same thing), as we have pointed out in several of our articles, is an ACTUALITY in that it has always existed and will always exist, whether it is tied to a material body or not. On the other hand the objects or things it perceives are illusions without actual substance, being but shadows in themselves; shadows that have their origin in the thought or imagination of some Being, whether we call him a god or a creator or anything else, and are accepted for the time being as realities by the perceiving mind. You will remember that Plato taught the same in his Allegory of the Cave mentioned in part one, proving that he was a good deal wiser than the modern metaphysicians who succeeded him.

So, to recap, although the mind itself is Actual, the things it perceives are realities, not actualities, since their appearance is dependent upon the mind that beholds them. These objects send out electro-magnetic rays from themselves, which help to make the thing seen appear to be actual to the perceiving mind. Therefore Locke's postulate that previous to the reception of experiences the mind is a blank sheet is entirely out of order, and no thinking person would agree with him on that point.

Spinoza argued that God exists and is abstract and impersonal. This too is both right and wrong. Right in the sense of the Supreme Cause, wrong in that there are host of beings at every level of manifestation who are neither abstract nor impersonal, and whom we may rightly regard as gods. For, as we learnt from Thales in part one of this investigation, "all things are full of Gods."

Leibniz affirmed the teachings of Occult Science by endowing the whole of creation with mental life, this being, according to him, capable of infinite gradations. The mathematician, in order to calculate geometrical figures, is obliged to divide them into an infinite number of infinitely small parts, and the physicists see no limit to the divisibility of matter into ever more sub-atomic particles. Leibnitz followed these arguments to some extent, but he could not rest content in assuming that matter was composed of a finite number of very small parts. His mathematical mind forced him to carry out the argument ad infinitum. And what became of the atoms then? They lost their extension and they retained only their property of resistance; they were the centres of force, just as a Kosmos is a centre of Force. They were reduced to mathematical points.

Leibnitz refers to these as the 'Monads', every one of which is a living mirror of the Universe, every Monad reflecting every other. If we compare this view and definition with certain Sanskrit stanzas (Slokas) translated by H. P. Blavatsky in The Secret Doctrine, we find it is in complete agreement with the teachings of Occult Science.

Another branch of European Philosophy consisted of Epistemology, or the theory of knowledge, which is chiefly concerned with the nature and scope (limitations) of knowledge, which, however, did not originate in modern times. Among the Greeks it goes back, at least, to Empedocles, and it figures largely in the programmes of the later Schools. The modern Epistemologists were mainly represented by Locke, Berkeley, Hume and Kant.

John Locke (1632-1704)

Locke is memorable not only for his services to speculation but for the example of a genuinely philosophic life entirely devoted to truth and good—a character in which personal sweetness, simplicity and charm were combined with strenuous, disinterested and fearless devotion to the State.

George Berkeley (1684-1753)

Berkeley was born and educated in Ireland. His great work, Principles of Human Knowledge, was published in 1710 (after the New Theory of Vision in 1709), to be followed in 1713 by the more popular Dialogues. At 29 his work was done, and although he lived 40 years longer, rising to be a Bishop in the Irish Church, after projecting a Christian Utopia for the civilisation of the North American Indians that never came to anything and practising "Every virtue under heaven", he made no other permanent contribution to philosophic thought.

David Hume (1711-1776)

Hume is recognised by some critics as the greatest of all British Philosophers. His magnum opus, the Treatise on Human Nature (published in 1739), was written during a stay in France, between the ages of 23 and 26. Such maturity of thought, so early reached, is without parallel in history. His History of England proved a source of fame and profit. Hume's philosophy is best understood when we consider it as a criticism of Berkeley, just as Berkeley's had been a criticism of Locke.

Immanuel Kant (1724-1804)

Kant was born at Königsberg (modern Kaliningrad) in the former East Prussia, where he spent his whole life, holding a chair at the University from 1770 to 1797. We cannot resist referring to one little incident relating to him in this brief survey of modern philosophy. It is told that on the day of his death a small bright cloud was seen sailing alone across the clear blue sky, and this cloud was of such a remarkable appearance that a crowd assembled on the bridge to watch it. One of them, a common soldier, exclaimed: "That is Kant's soul going to heaven!" This is a touching and beautiful tribute to the illustrious German, whose lofty, pure and luminous spirit it was uniquely fitted to characterise. We hope to discuss some of Kant's ideas in a future article, for of all the modern philosophers, he comes closest to the doctrines of Occult Science.

Kant was succeeded by the so-called German Idealists, Fichte, Hegel, Schelling, Schopenhauer, Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Robert Eduard von Hartmann and Johann Friedrich Herbart, but we have neither the space nor the time to consider their contribution to modern philosophy.

Victor Cousin (1792-1867)

Cousin was the founder of short-lived but influential school of French philosophy called 'eclecticism' that combined elements of German idealism and Scottish Common Sense Realism. Whilst he held his brilliant audiences spell-bound as he unrolled before them the Infinite, the Finite, and the relation between the two, he little knew that France's only great philosopher since Descartes was working in obscurity among them. This was Auguste Comte, the founder of Positivism.

Auguste Comte (1798-1857)

Comte fell early under the influence of the celebrated Henri de Saint-Simon (1760-1825), a mystical socialist, who exercised a powerful attraction on others besides himself. Comte disliked and despised Plato, altogether preferring Aristotle to him as a philosopher; but it is fundamentally as a Platonist, not as an Aristotelian, that he should himself be classed, in the sense that he valued knowledge above all as the means towards reconstituting society on the basis of an ideal life. There are two reasons why Comte's philosophy is called 'positive.' Firstly to distinguish it as reconstructive from the purely negative thought of the French Revolution. Secondly, because Comte dealt with real facts as opposed to the figments of theology and the abstractions of the metaphysics of his contemporaries. His works are too vast to enable us to discuss them in this article, and, moreover, we do not agree with him at all, as his doctrines are based mainly on the Material, discarding the Spiritual, although he made some attempts to include the Arts in his system. In this he failed completely, for he shows a deplorable lack of understanding of the true spiritual values of the Arts; brilliant as his discourses are. He tried to combine religion, philosophy, politics, sciences and the arts in his scheme for a better world, and his writings are the result of a lofty, though mistaken, idealism, which we respect though we do not agree with it.

The great idea of Comte's life, that the positive Sciences (although these are negative in actuality as we discuss in our article on scientific materialism), philosophically systemised, are destined to supply the basis of a new religion surpassing Catholicism in its social efficacy, seems a delusion really inherited from one of his pet aversions, Plato. It arose from a profound misconception of what Catholicism had done, and a misconception, equally profound, of the means by which its priesthood worked. Despite Comte's denials, the influence the Church exercised was not gotten by appeals to the heart, but by appeals to that future judgement with which the preaching of righteousness and temperance was associated by St. Paul, his supposed precursor in religion, as Aristotle was his precursor in philosophy.

John Stuart Mill (1806-1873)

Mill was, like Comte, a Platonist in the sense of valuing knowledge chiefly as an instrument of social reform. Mill's A System of Logic (published in 1843), the most important English contribution to philosophy since Hume, is based on Hume's theory of knowledge, amended and supplemented by some German and French ideas. In morals Mill may be considered the creator of what Henry Sidgwick (1838-1900), in his Methods of Ethics (1874), called universalistic Hedonism. Mill fully sympathised with Comte's demand for social reorganisation as a means toward a moral end. But, with his English and Protestant traditions, he had no faith in the creation of a new spiritual power with an elaborate religious code and ritual as the best machinery for the purpose. In his opinion, the claims of the individual to extended liberty of thought and action, not their restriction, were what first needed attention.

Herbert Spencer (1820-1903)

In his first great work, Social Statics (1851), Spencer established the principles of laissez-faire as the restriction of State action to the defence of liberty against internal and external aggression, the raising of taxes for any other purposes being unjust, as is also the private ownership of land, which is by nature the common heritage of all. Spencer subsequently came to abandon land nationalisation, probably from alarm at its socialistic implications.

Here we are compelled to call a halt to our review of modern philosophy. But before we do so, it is important to mention the names of a few more recent philosophers. In England, these included F. H. Bradley (1846-1924), Ernest Belfort Bax (1854-1926), Henri Bergson (1859-1941), William James (1842-1910), F.C.S. Schiller (1864-1937), Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) and A. N. Whitehead (1861-1947). In the United States, John Dewey (1859-1952), Albert Einstein (1879-1955) and George Santayana (1863-1952). In Germany Wittgenstein (1889-1951) and Martin Heidegger (1889-1976). Nor must we omit to mention the Russian esotericist, P. D. Ouspensky (1878-1947). His writings are most interesting from the point of view of studying the mind of a brilliant man who investigated many of the subjects we are interested in but came to a great many wrong conclusions, in spite of distinct glimpses of the truth. We hope to consider his ideas in a future article. Meanwhile, let us have a brief look at some of the ideas of those scientists who, in one way or another, accept the existence of Spirit and have attempted to integrate it with the current scientific worldview.

Modern scientists

The first name that springs to mind in this connection is Albert Einstein who, in his Relativity: The Special and General Theory, says: "I'm not an atheist. I don't think I can call myself a pantheist. We see the universe marvellously arranged and obeying certain laws but only dimly understand these laws." These words are as true today as they were when Einstein wrote them so far as material science is concerned. In his letters he tells us: "The most beautiful emotion we can experience is the mystical. It is the power of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead. To know that what is impenetrable to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom and the most radiant beauty, which our dull faculties can comprehend only in their most primitive forms—this knowledge, this feeling, is at the centre of true religiousness. In this sense, and in this sense only, I belong to the rank of devoutly religious men." If all scientists possessed even a fraction of the wisdom and humility of this truly great scientist we would not have been blest with such scientific 'gifts' as the atomic bomb and biological weapons.

More recently, the physicist Fritjof Capra brought about a profound change in the thinking of many scientists with the publication of his The Tao of Physics (published in 1975). Capra was born in Austria in 1939 and later moved to the United States where he studied and taught at several prestigious universities. He tells us that he had his epiphany while he was sitting by the ocean one afternoon and felt the cascading waves and sand forming a cosmic dance which he intuitively likened to the dance of Shiva which he had just been reading about. This started a long inquiry into Eastern religions and more particularly Hinduism and Zen Buddhism. In The Tao of Physics Capra writes: "The Rig Veda uses another term to express the dynamic character of the universe, the term Rita. This word comes from the root ri—to move. In its phenomenal aspect, the cosmic One is thus intrinsically dynamic, and the apprehension of its dynamic nature is basic to all schools of Eastern mysticism." This reprises the ideas of eternal and unceasing motion formulated by the pre-Socratic philosophers discussed in part one of our investigation, who also obtained much of their knowledge from India.

Consequently, it is not surprising that another scientist, the English biochemist Rupert Sheldrake, found the inspiration for his theory of 'Morphic Resonance' in the sacred literature of Hinduism. We review his groundbreaking book The Science Delusion elsewhere on our website. Had Sheldrake called his ingenious but flawed theory 'inherited memory' he would perhaps have been nearer the occult truth, for memory, as we point out in our occult studies course article on Intelligence, is the inherited knowledge of the Higher Self accumulated through the experience of many lifetimes. Sheldrake describes Morphic Resonance as "a process whereby self-organising systems inherit a memory from previous similar systems," which is a rather roundabout way of saying the same thing without mentioning a Higher Self or the hated word 'spirit' which so upsets many scientists!

There can be very few of our readers who have not heard of Carl Sagan (1934-1996), the much-loved American astronomer, cosmologist, astrophysicist and astrobiologist, who did more to popularise astronomy and science during his lifetime than any other scientist in recent times. What is less well-known is that Sagan was a devoutly religious man in the best and highest sense of the word. He was often asked whether he believed in God, and his invariable answer was that it all depended on what your definition was. No thinking person would disagree with this statement and John Temple says much the same in his article on If God is good why does he allow evil?

Sagan dedicated much of his time and many of his books to the interplay between religion and science. His views were not necessarily an attack on religion, but they were written in defence of the material sciences. He argued that, in some senses, science and religion are compatible and have the same goals: they are two sides of the same coin. This is true, and that 'coin' is Occult Science. It is the only science that presents us with a unified and satisfying view of both material science and religion in their true and correct relationship. Sagan drew a parallel between trying to understand the Universe and trying to understand ourselves—who we are, where our place is and what our role is in the great scheme of things—in short, a search for the meaning of life. In this he was unconsciously reprising the work of the pre-Socratic philosophers we discussed in part one of our investigation.

Sagan believed that the little science really knows about the Universe suggests that we know even less about God. He was equally critical of mainstream religion and said that: "the general problem with much of Western theology in my view is that the God portrayed is too small. It is a god of a tiny world and not a god of a galaxy, much less of a universe." H. P. Blavatsky says the same in both Isis Unveiled and The Secret Doctrine. Sagan was also a voluble critic of the current obsession with UFOs and extraterrestrials which we discuss in the second of our Astral Conversations. For him, the ideologies this fascination has spawned are a thinly disguised retelling of the Christian belief in a 'Second Coming', which will magically save us from ourselves and usher in a new world of peace and harmony. Sagan criticizes such moral laxity and self-delusion when he says that such thinking is "an extremely dangerous doctrine, because the more likely we are to assume that the solution comes from the outside, the less likely we are to solve our problems ourselves."

For all his devotion to truth and religious sentiments, Sagan disbelieved in an afterlife, saying: "I would love to believe that when I die I will live again, that some thinking, feeling, remembering part of me will continue. But as much as I want to believe that, and despite the ancient and worldwide cultural traditions that assert an afterlife, I know of nothing to suggest that it is more than wishful thinking. There are scientific problems whose outcomes I long to witness...but if death is nothing more than an endless dreamless sleep, this is a forlorn hope." This was a mistake on his part, for which however, we do not blame him. Let us hope he has now learnt better! But let us give the last word to Carl Sagan, who said: "science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality. When we recognise our place in an immensity of light years and in the passage of ages; when we grasp the intricacy, beauty and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual."

sunrise in blue

Joseph Parker — Sunrise in Blue — 1973, oil on canvas


Here we must reluctantly conclude our investigation of esoteric philosophy which, as you will recall from our introduction to part one, is intended to introduce those seeking occult knowledge and truth to this important but often neglected avenue of study. Although we have attempted to cover the ground pretty well in these three articles, it is inevitable that some subjects and some philosophers have had to be excluded in the interests of brevity and simplicity. For this and any other omissions we tender our sincere apologies to our readers. Those who wish to explore the concepts discussed in this investigation further will find a short list of resources in our further reading list at the end of the sidebar. We hope to write more about some of the philosophers we discussed in part two—notably Proclus—in a future articles.


© Copyright Article published 20 October 2018.
Updated 12 February 2023.

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