1987 / 2007 Hellenic Philosophy- History-Language. The Continuum: Past- Present: The Pillar to Europe`s Identity Aristotle Prof. Dr Socrates Kaplanis Patra 29.08.2007 Institutional Coordinator Map of ancient Greece General Issues • The forerunner of the European civilization both in its diversity and unity is to be found in the Hellenic world. 1. Theodor Gomperz in “ Griechische Denker” Liepsig, “..Almost all our intellectual culture has a Greek descent. • The deep understanding of its philosophical streams is a prerequisite to get free from its impact. • In this case, to ignore the past, is not only unwanted, is merely impossible….the whole of our thinking reflections, the notional order are to an outstanding degree outcomes of the great thinkers of this past….” 2. Paul Valery: • “We owe to Greece the very feature which perhaps distinguishes us the most profoundly from the rest of humanity. • We owe Greece the spiritual discipline the extraordinary example of perfection in all areas. • We owe a way of thinking which refers things to man the whole man…” Ancient Greece is a period in the Greek history, like a continuous evolution, which for around 1000 years, was considered to be the seminal culture which provided the foundation of Western Civilisation. The Greek culture had a direct influence to the Roman Empire which carried a version of it to the other parts of Europe, if not the world. The civilisation of the ancient Greeks has been immensely influential on the language, politics, educational systems, philosophy, science and arts giving rise to Renaissance, while again resurgent during various neoclassical periods, in the 18th and 19th century in Europe and America, contributes to the modern societies… Highlighting the Hellenic philosophy cultivation, evolution & trans-plant during the Centuries; towards the identity of the W. World • The identity of the W. World was gradually established and forged, using primarily the Greek philosophical analysis, during 3 important periods: • 1st Period: Renaissance, [15th -16th cent.], influenced by scholars who left, (fled), Byzantium/ Constantinopole/ Instanbul, passed to Italy transplanted, cultivated and taught the Greek Letters, Art, Sciences and Philosophy. 2nd Period: • The Age of Reason and the Age of Enlightenment, [1600-1800 A.D.]: • disclosing, re-approaching the scripts and the teaching of the ancient Greek Philosophers, • re-elaborating the Hellenic approach to Life, to Genesis, to Existence, to the Being… To mention few of those personalities: • Francis Bacon,[ 1561-1621],first to introduce the experimental Philosophy, was taught Aristotelic analysis . • Descartes, [1596 La Haye- 1650 Stockholm] He was much interested in the traditional Aristotelian Philosophy. • Voltaire a pseudonyme of Francois Marie Arouet, [1694-1778], Paris • Emmanuel Kant, [1724-1804], Koeningsberg 3rd Period A new philosophical era closely associated with the scientific revolution of the 19th20th century with direct impact nowadays Erwin Schroedinger, [1887-1961] a Nobel Laureate, “Nature`s dualism” in his book “ Nature and the Greeks” highlights, enlightens, discloses, pinpoints the Greek Philosophers ideas, axioms, the Questioning to Gen(n)esis, the Reason….., that is: their Cosmology and Cosmo-theory, as a model Conclusively: • Philosophers, mysts, scholars, thinkers of various philosophical schools, [ Diels, Burnet, Gomperz, Mendel, Russel, Heidegger, Hume, Hegel, Berkeley, Nietzche and so many others…] explore the Reason, Cause- Causality, Certainty and Uncertainty, Absolute and Relative, Deterministic and Stochastic, towards the Truth tools : the Greek Philosophical Questioning, the Dispute: the Socratic dialogues, the Aristotelic analysis ( to be by virtue, under action and by chance). A deep insight into the Man…a tool to think, to search…to develop. The early historic period. • Cosmogony & Cosmology, Cosmo-theory, Theogony, Theology, ( Metaphysica) • They are not a collection of myths, ….they do not constitute mythology. • A logic interpretation through a systematic effort for rationally convincing answers to: “where I am”, “What it is” “What it is for”, “What was for” “τι ην είναι ?” Aristotle`s question • Herodotus, [5th century B.C.], from the Greek city of Halicarnassus, ( modern Bodrum) in S.W. Turkey now, and • Thucydides, [460-395 B.C.], Athens, general and historian both give quite a lot of information of the events historical and others that happened in this known part of the world. Orpheus – Orphic Philosophy, and Isiodos Cosmogony, too. • Both come from the innumerable depths in History. • The Cosmic egg stands for Genesis in the Cosmogonies. It erupts and… the Light…Fanis …..Eros….appears. In fact, this is the Bing- Bang theory of our scientific models. Greek ancient Cosmogony, Theogony The duality of the Man. a. Titanic property…the mortal b. The devine property …which comes from Dionysos God, see Orphic myth. In Isiodos Theogony, • first was Chaos, then the Earth and Tartar and Eros ( Fanis) From Chaos were born Night ( Nychta) and Erevos. From Nychta were born Ether and Day. In Ieronymos rhapsodies: Chronos, (=Time), was the first. Then , Ether was born along with Chaos and Erevos. Pre-Socratic philosophers: Thales, [624-546 B.C.] from Militos, the Greek city in Minor Asia, the Ionian coast, is the first of the 7 sages of Greece. • He is considered as the father of Science and he is credited with 5 theorems in Geometry. • He measured the height of pyramids from their shadow, exactly when the time the shadow of a man is equal to his height. • That is, he used the similarity of Triangles. Pythagoras,[ 582-497 B.C.] from Samos island. • His Tetractis and his theorems, • like a2 + b2 = c2 • the geometric mean, • x2 = p*q • if p=2q , and q=1 , then x= √2 !!!! • The Golden ratio, number φ are the basic tools for mathematical logic and proof. Philosophical Theory of Numbers. • He, also, taught the heliocentric system Pythagora`s Tetraktys The original Tetraktys was a figure like this: and represented the number ten as the triangle of four. It showed at a glance that 1+2+3+4=10. • This symbolic geometry also exists in the Greek tradition. The Tetraktys of Pythagoras reminds us of that. Pythagoras’s disciples swore by this figure, saying: • I swear by the one who revealed to our soul the Tetratkys, which has in itself the source and the root of eternal nature. Herakleitos, [545- 497 B.C.] from Efessos, Minor Asia coast, now in Turkey, with his axiom “Ta Panta Rheei” = “all flow”…so, nothing remains the same. • All lectures on the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, start with his axiom ( axioma= αξίωμα)=postulate Democritus,[ 460-370 B.C.] from Thrace, the city of Avdira, with the atomic theory. “ Matter is made by atoms and free space”.... • … atoms cannot be divided. Lucretius,[ 99-55 B.C. Rome] Roman poet and philosopher, influenced by Democritus said: “ I will reveal these atoms from which nature creates all things” • Later, Aristotle argued on the perfect division of the Infinity down to an infinite set of points…(the Theory of Continuity: Aristotle and Zinon). It is the opposite!!! This mathematical formulation is still a riddle for mathematicians till our days, ( Cantor, 19th cent., T. Fanney, 20th cent., Robinson 21st cent.) Empedocles, [ 490-430 B.C.] from Acragas, a Greek city in Cicily. • In his poetic work “ on the Narure” combined Herakleitos and Parmenides principles,( the Being is motionless). • He taught that “no absolute genesis and wear exist; only, continuous change of the 4 sustances- tetrackysand Love and Hatred which work upon them ( the 4 ones) Parmenides, [around 505 B.C] from Elea, Magna Graecia, in Italy now. • “it is the same-identical or equivalent(?)someone to ponder on something and this to be.. the esse” The Dualism : Spirit and Senses…. their unification, ( according to Plotinos, ) or their interaction, discretisation or inter-exchangeability or transformation ? These are new conceptual configuration modes based on the mastery of the linguistic expression and/or the power of mind expression. This led, also, Ilya Prigogine, [ 25.01.1917 Moscow- May 28 2005], a Nobel Prize Laureate, ( 1977), to develop his theory on • “ the auto- (self)- organization of Cosmos-matter”. Socrates, in Athens,( 470-399) B.C. and his method: Definition, Analysis and Synthesis. Plato, Athens, (428-348), the Soul, the existence through senses and the true pragmatic environment, the level of Ideas…(the 4th Dimension ???), do lead to the dualism in all aspects of the inquiry. He is influenced by Phythagora, too, in some of his beliefs. Plato in his great work, “on the Democracy” [ Demos and Krato], • highlights- discusses the politician and the political ethos and justice, associated to the polis(=city) management • It illuminates and broadens our mind horizons even today. • The 4 Socratic Dialogues in which the aretaic issues are investigated: • 1. Harmidis…. about the Judicious • 2. Lachis………………about Bravery • 3. Phaedon ………. about the Prudency • 4. on the Democracy…about the Politician and Justice Those 4 Dialogues are the properties of virtue ( Areti ), or in other words the aretaic characteristics, like the aretaic turn ( a Phil. Stream last cent.) The impact of his Academy, the first University in the world, is invaluable In addition, the stream of neo-Platonic philosophers contributed in Renaissance and later to the development of the societies. In Plato`s work Kratylos, Socrates exemplifies the structure –meaning of the words and their synthesis. • A challenge for everybody to underpin the perception, conception of an idea and transfer of thoughts-meanings down to senses….to speech. This is the Golden Age where the values received prime importance and Democratic cities achieved the Ariston. The citizens all over the Greek land practised, sponsored by Demos, in many cases in: Arts: Theatre, ( Epidavros with its best acoustic in the world), Poetry, Poems and Poets Music, ( Pythagora: the music tones) and Moussae • Sculpture, Painting and Architecture. Logic, ( it was an Epos of Logic) and Ethos- ethics/morals, • to cultivate the Talent and the Character of the citizens. ( mind, soul, spirit), and a health body to host a health mind. Therefore, concern for: • Athletics, athletism, gymnastics and Gymnasium…the Olympic Games….Peace. Health: Therapy, Medicine , Doctors, Hygiene, • Asklepios, a hero and a great doctor as Homer and Isiodos refer to; also, Sophocles and Socrates • Hippocrates( ic) Oath, 460 BC, in Kos island, • Claudius Galenos, [131-201] in Rome The City,( Demos) participates in: Intellectual and Arts competitions, in critics and dispute to all. It is the Life Long Learning in Theatres. • With such a policy free mind leaders with Rhetoric talent, writers and lawyers; great city speakers flourished. The Greek cities are managed with a Democratic ethos that is centered around the citizens and their prosperity. Concern for: • Harmony, Symmetry, Order, Ontology, (the inquiry into the meaning of existence itself) • Deontology, Epistemology, • Teleo-logy ……telos, and teleios The teleologic approach, the Metaphysica, builds the Theology frame, while Plato makes, in addition, the frame of the organisation and management of the city. Philosophy (philos= friend, and Sophia =wisdome, this is the answer Pythagora gave when people said he was wise) : • It is a discipline concerned with questions on how one should live,( Ethics), • what sort of things exist(ed), what is their essence, the kind…(metaphysica), • what is the genuine knowledge? (epistemology), • what are the principles of reasoning ( Logic). To achieve all these a n exact dynamic tool had to be developed. That was the Greek language; a superb tool not just for effective communication, but also to philosophise: • “ Laconizein ( to speak like the Spartians) esti (is the same as to) Philosopheen ( Philosophise). • It is a superb logic structure, (a Domus of Logic) with causa and….the reasoning inbuilt. • The meaningful- LOGIC- structure of words, their synthesis-composition, the inter-changeability of letters. • The roots of many words are still found in many languages and also the composite parts of the words have a Greek structure which grants the exact meaning in short wording. • -ism, -ist. –istic, -ic • DisEu- A- In- Meta- Pro- Premacro- , micro-, • telemetry, tele-vision, tele-scope, telescopy…. • Philo- , cosmo-, homo- , hetero- Hyper, pan- , para-, cyclo-, photo-, poly- etc and so many other examples one may across reading the Greek language. • All these concepts, ideas, beliefs and principles highlighted before, were passed as a heritage to the new societies, as tools to disclose those truths and progress further. • This is what really happened after the Age of Renaissance The philosophical achievements and development of the centuries of the Golden Age are reflected in the works of a great Mathematicians, Phycisists and engineers. • One remarkable feature is Archimides, [287-212 B.C.],from the Greek city of Syracuse, in Cicily, Italy now. • His works in the Theory of numbers, in Geometry ; • in Physics, ( levers; he said : give me a stand point and I may move Gaia =the Earth), • in Hydrostatics, • in Optics (concentrating solar collectors), • in engineering ( the wormscrew, still in use in many hydro plants, or even water pumping etc). • The famous irrational number π = 3.14... , or can be estimated to any accuracy using the expression which is supremely regular: • π = 4( 1/1 -1/3 + 1/5 - 1/7 + 1/9 - 1/11 + 1/13 -1/15 +....) • Aristotle, Stageira city in Macedonia, (384322 B.C.) • “τι ην είναι ?” • is the basic question in Metaphysica, [ meta= μετά= after and Physics= Φυσική , Φύση= Nature from Φύω= fyo= grow, the plant grows, and Φως=fos=Light], • Aristotle called this work, “Theology” or the “ First Science” • In Meta-Physica : Time ( Chronos) and Space are the same, are identical, are of the same thing. Meta ta Physica Biblio Λ 1071b • “Neither genesis nor wear of Chronos is possible. As then it would not be possible that Before and After might be, if Chronos did not exist. • It is therefore the motion continuous to the same degree as Chronos is. As Chronos is the same thing with motion or it is a mode of its existence. • No motion can be continuous but only within the space, and then this motion will be cyclic….” • Note, also, that Albert Einstein said:” Space and Time are nodes in which we think, not conditions in which we live” Aristotle`s works were for centuries the source of knowledge and the point of departure for intellectual inquiry in the fields of letters and sciences. • The editio princeps of Aristotle`s complete works in the original was issued by Aldo press, in Italy, in 5 volumes (1495-1498 AD), during Renaissance In general, • Greek philosophers argued upon two opposite theories about nature and existence. This created a dualistic approach . This dualism ( see Schroedinger) became the source for the big breakthroughs, along centuries. A great example of the dilemma: • “who is right Herakleitos or Parmanides?” • The latter attracted the philosophical efforts of Ilya Prigogine, [ 25.01.1917 Moscow- May 28 2005] • Parmenidis: nothing is new. All exist and will exist for ever. • Think about…it is esse. • Herakleitos: the opposite attitude. “ta panta rheei, nothing remains the same” • This opposition re-appears for 2500 years in the Western world cultural history. • Newton`s Dynamic theory conforms with the Parmenides one. Both do accept causality and that Time= Chronos is absolute and reversible. ( Determinismus) • Philosophers split. • Many like Hegel, Bergson, Heidegger believe that Time is unidirectional, the arrow of Time has a unique flow…goes up. To repudiate Time-Chronos is the same as to believe that Life is a utopia, chimera, of a ghost type or better to be false pretences. Both intellectual approaches are true under certain conditions. 1. the Cosmo-theory of Dynamics and 2. the Cosmo-theory of Thermodynamics. • In the first, events do not happen in reality, as they are pre-determined. • On the other hand, according to Thermodynamics “all flow towards the thermal Death”. Therefore, the appearance of structures away from the equilibrium is very important, as Time appears to be Creative. Post-Aristotle Philosophers. • Then , the Byzantine: the Religious era, epoch , the Re-naissance ( re-Gennesis)… …after 5th century AD till the 15th century…. Especially, the Medieval Philosophy, ( from St. Augustine 354-430 A.D till 1500 A.D.), which is, defined partly by the process of rediscovering the ancient culture developed by the Greeks and Romans and partly by the need to address theological problems and to integrate sacred doctrine ( in Christianity and Judaism) and secular learning… • 15 hundred years later, St Tomas Aquinas (1225-1274 A.D.)…”a pupil” of Aristotle(!), is an example of the importance and role the Greek scholars and philosophy played for the Western World development. • The Greek scholars transfer the ancient spirit , the Philosophical scripts to the West: • Roma, Pisa, Venice, Florence, Bologna, Pandova, Ferrara etc. • Italy hosts the majority of the Greek scholars who left Constantinopole. • They convey the philosophical spirit of the Period of Classical Hellenism; also, before and after it. All these should be re-co-llected ( Co= syn , and lego ), for building the pillars of the Western world. The Age of Reason and the Enlightenment, [1600-1800 A.D.] – Illumination- and the modern philosophers, eg Gomperz, Burnet, Heidegger, Kant etc who were perfect users of the Hellenic intellectual and Linguistic heritage dug deep into the Greek philosophy to analyse, ( ana- lyo ) systematically values, principles associated to the human life. • The systematic cultivation passed into universities which appeared everywhere since then.. Critical thought was stimulated by Cartesian philosophy ( demolished later by Em. Kant) and by progress of the exact human sciences. • This phenomenon was European. A passion for Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Medicine , Astronomy, and natural history developed in all countries. At the same time, new historical, economical, political and social thought made headway. New philosophers pushing back the shadows of the past forged a path to Enlightenment and joined forces in various structures and groups building networks which covered the whole W. World. • The ideas of Enlightenment aged along with their advocates. The new generations looked to new horizons. • The message of Em. Kant demolished the Cartesian and showed , argued about the limits of Reason. Conclusively, a methexis to Hellenic Paedeia. • The last centuries, 19th-21th, new trends and versions of the Philosophical streams appeared and argued on the basis of ethics, morals, consequencies, rationalism, mind and soul. • There appeared movements like: • Rationalism and Empiricism • Skepticism • Idealism • Pragmatism • Phenomenogy • Consequentialism, deontology and the aretaic turn Conclusions- Discussion • Would European thought have been able to reach such heights without the initial push and re-push from Socrates, Plato, Aristotle , Epicurus,[ 341-270 B.C.], Athens, etc? • The sciences were, also, inherited by the Greeks. • In all the European languages the various scientific disciplines have Greek words/names. • Hellenic civilization gave Europe the complete range in Arts along with a taste in Harmony and Beauty ( eumorphia) • Centuries ago Greeks provided rational interpretation for the creation of Nature and the Man. • Ancient Greece created the forms of social and political life which later became characteristics of the European civilization, namely the polis • That was the breeding ground for the types of governments which appeared throughout Europe`s history. • The democratic, socialisation ethos which brings people together is Language and Culture. The Initiative of yours to go for learning Greek might drive you to paths of Science and Philosophy that you have never thought of. You must go on trying for the Best, the Ariston. The Greek philosophers and their language might be a very useful tool in your adventures in Life.