By John Phillips
This examine areas the doctrine of evil of the Neoplatonist Proclus in its right context, the exegetical culture because it constructed in the quite a few colleges of historical Platonism, from heart Platonism to early Neoplatonism. with reference to the evil of the physique, there are chapters at the quite a few interpretations of Plato's suggestion of a pre-cosmic disorderly movement because the resource of corporeal evil and at the function of what Platonists known as an irrational Nature within the starting place of that movement. As for evil of the soul, there are chapters facing the idea that of an evil global Soul and with the view that the evil that's ascribed to the human soul is a kind of mental weak point.
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Additional resources for Order From Disorder. Proclus' Doctrine of Evil and its Roots in Ancient Platonism (Studies in Platonism, Neoplatonism, and the Platonic Tradition, Volume 5)
If all good things are commensurate, similar, and possess an aﬃnity to each other, then evils are wholly contrary and have symmetry neither with each other nor with what is good. And so if things that are similar to each other should have one cause, but dissimilar things should have a plurality of causes—for those things that come from a single cause all are friendly, sympathetic, and agreeable with each other (cf. Theaetetus 146a7–8), some more so and others less—then for those who maintain that there are many causes of evils and not one, diﬀerent ones for souls and bodies, evil must be sought from and in these causes.
12 [DMS c. 55, p. 254,1–18] We must next discuss what and how many diﬀerent kinds of evil there are. We have already said that evil is one thing in souls and another in bodies; and that it is of two sorts in souls, one coming to be in the irrational form of life and the other in reason. We should add now that there are three subjects in which evil resides: the particular soul, the image of the soul, and the body of individual beings. If, then, the good of the superior soul is in accordance with intellect—for intellect is anterior to it—and the good of the irrational soul is in accordance with reason—for the good for each thing comes from its immediate superior—, while in turn the good of the body is in accordance with nature—for this is the principle of its proclus’ doctrine of evil 31 motion and rest—, then necessarily evil for the ﬁrst of these opposes intellect in that it is the sub-contrary of what accords with intellect, the evil of the irrational soul, whose good accords with reason, opposes reason, and evil for the body [whose good accords with nature] opposes nature.
Sharples (1994), 171. 29 Cf. Aulus Gellius Noct. Att. 1 = SVF 2. 1169: sua…scaevitate et voluntario impetu… 30 Plutarch, De an. procr. 1015C, takes the Stoics to task for pointing up the Epicureans’ failure to provide a cause for evil, when they themselves have also failed to do so, since they claim that evil has no source among the ﬁrst principles, but comes about as a secondary consequence (kat’ epakolouthesin) of the action of those principles. On this idea, see Long (1968), 333; Kerferd (1978), 493; Sharples (1994), 178; Opsomer and Steel (19992), 237, n.
Order From Disorder. Proclus' Doctrine of Evil and its Roots in Ancient Platonism (Studies in Platonism, Neoplatonism, and the Platonic Tradition, Volume 5) by John Phillips