Did Socrates look ugly, really?

I was amazed to read Socrates’ philosophy, but I was horrified when I read of his appearance. He had been known to be ugly and comic. Very few can imagine the real looks of him. This ugly man holding wisdom and friendly spirit would come across people, confounding them with his theory of intrigue. Isn’t it interesting?

Well, those people who would listen to this ugly looking man and thank him for his understanding of inquiry, always surprise me. I was always curious to know was he really ugly or the men who plotted against him were describing him ugly.

I’ll bring you two trustworthy comparison here that describes his looks and I will leave you to wonder about his features once again. I start from the one that I liked the most.

“A bald head, a great round face, deep set staring eyes, a broad and flower nose that gave vivid testimony to many a symposium -it was rather the head of a porter than that of the most famous philosophers. But if we look again we see, through the crudity of the stone, something of that human loneliness and unassuming simplicity which made this homely thinker a teacher beloved of the finest youths in Athens” –The story of Philosophy by Will Durant, Publisher- pocket books, ed. Sept 2006, Page 6

And here goes other one…

“In a culture that worshipped male beauty, Socrates had the misfortune of being born incredibly ugly. Many of our ancient sources testify to his rather unpleasant physical appearance and Plato makes reference to it more than once (Theaetetus 143e, Symposium, 215a-c; also Xenophon Symposium 4.19, 5.5-7 and Aristophanes Clouds 362). Socrates was exophthalmic, meaning his eyes popped out of his head and were not straight, but focused sideways. He had a snub nose, which made him look like a pig, and he was portrayed with a potbelly by several accounts. Socrates did nothing to improve his unusual look, always wearing the same cloak and sandals both day and evening. Plato’s Symposium (174a) offers us one of the few accounts of his caring for his appearance.” –Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy IEP https://iep.utm.edu/socrates/

I hope you enjoyed this comparison. Let me know which one you liked the most. Thanks for reading.

Eudaimonia- Classifying wellness

Eudaimonia in a general term denotes happiness and well being. Here eu is good or well, daimon is spirit. So, basically, it is the wellness of spirit. It is realizing one’s spirit. This concept of happiness is taken from Greek Ethics. The original definition of Eudaemonia is flourishing as well as well being. Why we need to study happiness is a major question asked by various subjects of science, philosophy, and ethics?

Simply, we need to study happiness because we need it. Nobody wants to live in misery. Everyone wants to live their life full of happiness and fulfillment. The philosophers of Greek have provided deeper meaning to the term ‘Eudaimonia’. The thoughts of the greatest believer is put down here.

Nichomachean Ethics is the best work of Aristotle. It deals with various concepts that help man to live a life of happiness. This work has a great impact on our practical thinking. In this book, chapter 10 covers ‘pleasure, happiness, and upbringing’. It raises the basic question of why pleasure doesn’t last for a long time? We seek pleasure because there is a desire to live life, and the desires won’t last for a long time, and so, the pleasure. Chapter 6-8 of Nichomachean ethics discuss happiness. Aristotle says that happiness is the attainment of the highest virtue. Happiness is that which requires the least possession and highest satisfaction. Aristotle completely denies materialistic life as sources of happiness. He focused upon the contemplative path which gives a greater inner satisfaction.

“…Some identify happiness with virtue, some with practical wisdom, others with a kind of philosophic wisdom, others with these, or one of these, accompanied by pleasure or not without pleasure; while others include also external prosperity…it is not probable that…these should be entirely mistaken, but rather that they should be right in at least some one respect or even in most respects.”

Aristotle, Nichomacean Ethics, Book I, Chapter 8 (excerpt from Nothingistic.org, 2019)

“He is happy who lives in accordance with complete virtue and is sufficiently equipped with external goods, not for some chance period but throughout a complete life.”

– Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, Book I, Chapter 10 (excerpt from Nothingistic.org, 2019).

Aristotle believes that Eudaemonia is to understand our human nature and act for its growth. It is reaching towards the perfection of humanity by continuous reflection on self. By realizing our inner good, and committing to it for life, we can get ultimate happiness.
Philosophy is a place where virtues are given the topmost position. Virtues are the mean between two extremes. The two extremes could be right or wrong, good or bad, sane or insane, real or unreal. It is balancing the situation of two opposite force. And then, finding a path in the middle of it. We need to look at the situation, perceive it, and find the mean. Virtue or excellence is whatever enables good of a particular person, object, theory, or situation. The philosophy of Eudaemonia gives the reason for achieving virtue. This virtue ethics is most important philosophy that enable us to understand the ultimate good and live accordingly.

“At the right times, about the right things, towards the right people, for the right end, and in the right way, is the intermediate and best condition, and this is proper to virtue.”
The concept of Eudaemonia is important because it not only helps to differentiate between good and bad, but also guides us to make the best decision.

According to Plato, Eudaimonia is the ultimate aim. It is the destiny of human life. It is the greatest achievement that humans desire. In every action, one should commit goodness. Because the final end of action is realized in action and is not a consequence of action. Further, Eudaemonia doesn’t always relate the ultimate goals to happiness. But could also aim for morality, kindness, compassion, etc. The concept of Eudaemonia can’t just be limited to happiness. Happiness is a state of mind for some period of time. For example, I am happy because I met my cousin. This happiness may cease to exist after 2-3 days. And this can’t be classified as Eudaemonia. Eudaemonia lasts for a longer period of time. It’s the well being which can’t get destroyed easily. Even Dalai Lama says “kindness is the way to happiness.”

Socrates believes that Eudaemonia is the highest virtue. Excellence in morality is the truest happiness. It is because it involves the happiness of oneself as well as others. Socrates believes that acquiring knowledge is important to reach the goal of virtue. Knowledge can give us the truest idea of morality, courage, justice, wisdom, etc.

The difference in Aristotle and Socrates quotient of happiness is the ‘happiness for oneself’ and ‘happiness for others’. Socrates looks for universal happiness, but Aristotle is inclined to the happiness of self. Plato is looking for the ultimate aim to which happiness could be subscribed. Hence, we know that there are different philosophers who came up with their unique ideas of happiness. Happiness is within self or it may be outside. The real point is to realize happiness and make our life fulfilled. This philosophy of happiness is important to make us understand the true happiness. The true happiness isn’t in materialistic goals of life. The true form of happiness is visible in the morality we chooses. It is not in the success we achieve, but in the values we learnt.

Happiness is very misunderstood term. The concept of Eudaemonia links happiness in terms of well being. And therefore, it helps us to choose the values that keep us achieving long term happiness.

Role of Socrates Method in present time

Socrates was a Greek philosopher from Athens. He initiated the discussion of complicated moral & philosophical problems in an interesting way. Socrates posed himself as one who knows nothing. He then interrogates with a person to understand their emotions and feelings. He will get to know the mindset of a person by understanding the person’s thought projection. In this way, he reveals the wrong perception of a person by their own outcome of realization.

Socrates stands like a mirror before a person where a person reveals all rising thoughts. The person realizes in the end how wrong he was. In this way, Socrates gave us the path of wisdom. Different authors have employed Socrates as a character of their books on Dialogues. They tried to portray the various methods of Dialogues that Socrates used. Some such philosophers are- Aristotle, Xenophon, Plato, and Cicero.

There is an expression of totality in the Socrates Dialogues. Here the desire for certainty appears while making a conversation. The sense of making valid statements come to a person observing Dialogical methods. People arrive with a clear idea. They start a conversation with an untrue hypothesis. And they end up with a conclusion indicating truth. The Socrates method was to derive the truth which seems to be impossible for many. Socratic methods promote independent, effective and critical thinking.


Three levels of Dialogues-

Conversation itself / answering– Socrates starts the conversation and pretend to be completely ignorant. The conversation comprises of continuous series of questions and answers. Socrates starts the conversation by asking simple questions. And slowly he enters into the difficulty where the person has no clue of it. In this way, not only the truth got revealed. But the egoist nature of a person is also taken down. The conversation method of Socrates is a practice of healing. Socrates acts as a healer and cures a person’s ignorance, attitude, arrogance, fake pride, and lack of interest in seeking the truth. He fills the person with curiosity and desire to look for the truth. The Socrates method of raising awareness of truth is rarely seen in today’s times. People aren’t ready to remove the glasses of the wrong perception to include new ideas in life. Understanding this method in a better way may give an impression of adopting it for the welfare of all.

Methodological- Socrates methodological is a kind of diagnosis. It’s a process of doing continuous research in order to reveal the truth. The truth has to come out by removing lies. We know that the subject philosophy is multi-dimensional. The varied perception of life has created the foundation of philosophy. Philosophical questions is unanswerable by following one man’s principles. Different directions have to be studied for reaching into close proximity of truth. The idea of a methodological approach is to change typical philosophical answers. The way we perceive things needs thorough research instead of giving something ready-made.

Skeptical – Philosophical answers are true for some and not true for others . Knowledge certainty isn’t possible. We just need to find out proof before committing to something. The method of Skeptical is the best approach to reveal validity of philosophical principles. Descartes’s skeptical arguments for finding the existence of self is the most popular theory in the history of philosophy. This method is suitable for dealing with the doubts of both self and others. Socrates skepticism tries to remove all knowledge which appears to be true, but lack truth in real sense. By following the skeptical approach, we reach the closeness of a particular truth.

Socrates in today’s times

Nobody wants to believe what is objectively true or good. Socrates tries to study each area of philosophy- Asking questions like: ‘what is knowledge?’ in the area of Epistemology. ‘What is real, eternal, true?’ in the area of metaphysics. And ‘what are morality, and moral goods?’ in the area of ethics. Socrates fully defined the truest concept of philosophy and life. He says that ‘the unexamined life isn’t worth living’. The process of introspection, observation, identification and forming relations is available in the methods of Socrates. Socrates Philosophy, in the real sense, is a love of wisdom.

Socrates was a great lover of wisdom. He has chosen philosophy over his life. He died to keep the practice of philosophical methods alive.

The period of the pandemic is getting tough. People are losing faith day by day. The factor of blind faith is excessively increasing. People who are hopeless, lost, and facing failure are finding the easiest option to end life. They are failing to come out through struggling phases.
In this time, we need a Socratic method of philosophy to not accept anything forcibly. And to conduct a thorough inquiry before accepting any theory. The willingness to do research is losing in humanity. We are accepting things as it is without looking deeper into its several aspects. The judgment is mostly biased because we aren’t interested in losing relations. Humans are willing to sacrifice truth for the interest of their own. This whole idea of humanity could bring trouble to human life. Life is completely losing hope and scope. The Socratic method provides wisdom for a thorough inspection of our conduct. The skeptic approach could motivate us to accept values which is right. It gives us an opportunity to understand the validity of the situation by our own judgment. To doubt the validity of a situation gives us strength to practically examine it.

Instead of believing in false stories and ruining our life, we must engage in thorough thinking and decision making. This idea of skeptic couldn’t destroy the trust with people. It can recreate the trust by bringing truth in its glance. The conversation method is very useful in today’s time of the pandemic. The physical distancing has stopped the meaningful conversation which people would generally follow. People are depressed because they aren’t getting the right answers to their questions. The methods of conversation via electronic medium could keep away the mental illness. This method could keep the purpose of life secured. This platform could provide approach to better living.

The Socrates method of conversation, Diagnosis, and skepticism is useful in present scenarios. The regular talks with our family, friends, colleagues, relatives could take away the boredom of life. The dialogues are essential in feeling high spirited and excited for the purpose of life. If you feel the importance of Dialogues, then start the practice to ease down the complexity of life.

Three pillars of human life

Human life is precious because of knowledge, beauty, wisdom, conscience, morality, responsibility, care, rationality, curiosity, justice, meaning, acceptance, willingness, feelings, emotions, attitude, fear, love, attraction, and so many things. All this has some origin or source of its production. It arises out of three important pillars which makes human life in existence. These pillars are- ‘Nous’, ‘Psyche’, ‘Soma’.

In ancient philosophy, term nous signifies intellect or intelligence or ideals which a human mind carries all throughout its life. A person is greedy, lazy, caring, respectful, modest, and trustworthy because of the ‘Nous’. Anaxagoras(pre-socratic philosopher) is known to be the first person who has defined the concept of ‘nous’ or mind which is responsible for all the orderly patterns we see around. Aristotle define ‘nous’ as awareness which makes human a rational being. Without ‘Nous’, human beings cease to exist. Everyone has some ideals in life. Those who don’t follow their ideals are taken as slaves.

The psche of human forms the psychological mental conditioning like introversion(reserved), extroversion(open to all), extraversion(social butterfly), agreeableness(warm & kind), neuroticism(worry often), openness, and conscientiousness(organized or having a strong sense of duty). Psyche is responsible for what a person is in reality(so basically personality). It is the outward expression of a person’s inner thought.

‘Soma’ is the physical material of which human being consists of. A person is thin, fat, slim, skinny, chubby, fit, athletic because of the quality of matter inside them.

So, we see, this three things can make a human complete being. It is believed that we don’t have much control on the three pillars which make our life in existence. But, if we focus on a particular domain for a longer period of time, we do have a chance to bring change. Comparing this whole concepts to Indian philosophy, it is said that the overall personality of humans are made up of five sheaths(coverings) or panchakosha. These are- Annamaya kosha(food sheaths), Pranamaya Kosha(breath sheath), Manomaya Kosha(mind sheath), Vijnanamaya Kosha(intellect sheath), Anandmaya Kosha(bliss sheath).

Now the important question arises is – How does this sheath prepares our complete body which consists of mind, matter & spirit? The answer lies in the division of kosha in three types of bodies-

  1. The gross body sthula sharira (physical matter)- Annamaya Kosha(Annam means food) & Pranamaya Kosha – It forms the outer covering of human body. Many philosophers believe that breath brings life to human body, but it’s not true. Breath actually brings action to human body.
  2. The subtle body sukshma sharira– Manomaya Kosha & Vijnanmaya Kosha – the mind and intellect(knowledge) is necessary to bring meaning to human life. Without this, a human would just be a moving machine.
  3. The causal body karana sharira– Ananadmaya Kosha This is the complete bliss a human obtain by crossing all the limitations arising in mind, body and intellect. Though this is very close to aatman(inner soul). It is not aatman because it still has some limitations which differentiate it from aatman. Aatman brings life to human body. When a person dies, aatman separates from the body.

By understanding this concepts, we can now answer many questions which generally confuses our mind- What causes death? So, the malfunction in any of human’s three pillars could take away the precious life. Is soul important? Yes, because it brings life to human body. Does mind & intellect differs? yes, both are different and meet its concerned purpose.

Hope so this article stir our reasoning and make us to think more of our life. Feel free to criticize or add something new to this theory. Thank you for reading.

Pre- Socratic Philosophers

Pre-Socratic Philosophers-

It is the ancient Greek Philosophy before the influence of Socrates. We are going to specifically look at the ontological views of the world by the following philosophers.

Thales, Anaxagoras, Anaximenes, Pythagoras, Parmenides, Heraclitus and Democritus

Thales

Originating principle of world and nature is a single natural substance i.e., water.

Thales used Geometry and Deductive Reasoning for deriving conclusion to a problem and is well known for his Mathematical Discovery.

Anaxagoras

Originating principles of the world and cosmos is nous or mind.

Everything is consisting of the portions of everything else. The food we eat creates our body, blood, flesh. It is because it already has the portions seen in the resulting products of the body, flesh, etc.

Anaximenes

Originating principles of the world is air. It is because air is the primary substance of which every being is composed.

Every change in the Universe is the result of two important factors i.e., Condensation and Rarefaction.

These three philosophers(Thales, Anaxagoras, Anaximenes) are known to be from the school of Miletus(school of thought founded in 6th century B.C)

Pythagoras 

  1. All things are numbers. The physical world could be understood through numbers.
  2. Pythagoras believed in immortality and transmigration of the soul.
  3. The world is made up of the interaction of the opposite qualities such as male-female, even-odd, etc.

Parmenides

Reality is one, permanent and changeless.

Parmenides only written work is a poem entitled ‘on nature’.

Heraclitus 

Everything is constantly changing. Famous statement- ‘You cannot step into the same river twice’.

Fire is the basic principle for the orderly nature of the universe.

Democritus 

Everything is derived from the smallest particle called an atom. Democritus developed the atomistic theory of his teacher Leucippus.

Forms and Reality of Life

Forms define the reality of our life. The reality which surrounds us and the reality which we believe in. To understand more, let’s start with the concepts of ancient Greek Philosophers.

When we talk about ‘forms’ in Philosophy, the theory of Plato and Aristotle rules our mind. They have their different concepts on the ‘forms’, but the notions were almost the same. The intentions as we can speak of, was to define an object under some classes to give proper identification.

Plato Forms

Plato ‘form’ was a purely independent concept. According to him, ‘form’ has got its different world. It’s completely different from the world of matter. They are eternal and limitless. He called the forms as ‘ideas’. It is the most fundamental thing in the universe.

Aristotle Forms

Aristotle forms seek a classification for all the objects in this world. It is called as an archetype for all the creations. For example, ‘beauty’ is a category where all the related beautiful things could be defined and identified. ‘Horse’ is a category which could be used to define any particular figure which resembles like a horse. ‘Woman’ is a category where we can put and define any women of the country.

The Aristotle form could again be categorized into the following two concepts-

1. The Substantial Form– It is the actual category of a form which couldn’t be altered in any conditions. It is a substantial form. For example, the substances ‘horses’, ‘woman’, etc.

2. The Accidental form– It is the altered category of a form. It is the deceived form which is not verifiable from its actual category. It is non- substantial. For example, beauty, wise, justice, cruelty. The nature and definitions of all such things alter from time to time and therefore couldn’t be called as a substantial form.

Conclusively, the forms have different types but the notions are the same. It is the process of identification of some being through the use of some category, principles, and classifications.

Why Forms matters?

Forms, when defined briefly, is a principle which reflects the concepts of a particular person, place or a thing.

In our life, we are conscious of all the forms around us. We are aware of all the natural and unnatural laws. We find the essence of a thing in its process of working. We find the essential character of a thing by its forms. Form matters very much in life. It matters to such an extent that we don’t care to look for the essence when there is some widely accepted form. For example, if there is a certain political idea, we may not care to study its essence until it’s producing sound results.

Forms as a principle matter too much for us. We are habituated to look at the forms that we forget to analyse its essence.

The books, the scriptures, the thoughts of a nobleman are so much meaningful for us. We don’t find it useful to verify the same by our own. We so much believe in the theory produced by others, that we often neglect to verify the theories by our own effort.

There is a story in Chinese scripture which would make the theory of ‘forms and essences’ very much clear.

A meaningful Story

A Chinese monk would use to deliver his sermons on a regular basis. The peculiar thing about the monk was that he would deliver the sermons only when his cat would sit next to him. His love for his cat was admired so much by his disciples that they created a small throne for the cat too. This process of monk delivering his teachings with his cat goes on for years and years. The monk died one day, and a new monk sat on the throne to deliver his first sermons. People got disturbed and found something wrong in the manners of the lecture delivery of a new monk. They claimed that the cat should be there when a monk delivers a sermon. This was crazy. Isn’t it? How people could believe in the forms or procedures so much that they forget the real essences?

This same thing is going on in our society. We are so much conscious of the procedures, methods and systems that we often neglect the real essences. The damn system has spoiled our mindset. We aren’t understanding the essences. We are just claiming the system to be right because it was so throughout the years.

When are we going to realize the essences of a particular system and start working on its positive effects on the society?

The thought pattern which we believed to be true for the years could also be wrong. We should learn to understand the essences of a thing, before completely accepting it as true.

The forms and the reality of life are very well connected through the link of essences. When we understand the essence, we won’t make a mistake to understand the forms and the reality of life.

Thought for the day

The best thing we can do is to identify any system and compare its essences and the meanings towards a society or being. This would directly impact the choices we make in our lives for a smarter living.

Thank you for reading my post. If you liked this idea and want to share some more, then do comments your valuable thoughts on this.

‘To be’ is ‘to exist’

Being signifies existence. The literal meaning of Being is ‘to be’ or ‘to exist’. What is this existence for? Why DO WE EXIST? To clear this concept in a better way, it is very important to define the nature of being or its concerning reality.

Problem of Being

There are so many questions arising on the nature of being or reality which many ancient philosophers have tried to answer from time to time. The basic questions are- ‘what is being?’ ‘What we should consider being or reality as?’ ‘What if reality doesn’t persist?’ ‘How can we define reality as?’ ‘What is the complete nature of reality?’ ‘What is considered as permanent and temporary?’ ‘How the concept of ‘being’ makes relevance in our life?’

The philosophers of the ancient period have tried to find out the answers to the above-mentioned questions using various ways. The deep intellectual thoughts and the reference to related texts may help to identify the real nature of beings. The sources vary from scripture knowledge to intuition. The natural things around us are the primary sources which anyone would believe in. This is because we always believe what we perceive. Right!

Cause of Existence

The philosophers of the early period found that complete existence is not dependent on the natural elements like air, water, fire, earth and ether. They felt that the elements can be considered as the cause of each other and other natural things found in this Earth. But the cause of ‘being’ cannot be related to the elements or atoms for sure. The cause of being or consciousness or existence could only be itself. This is the ontological view “on being” held by various philosophers.

Real & Temporary

We see philosophers comparing their lives from what they see around. The leaf appears fresh when anew but dries when it falls from the tree. The same is life -we die when our body weakens and is not able to support life. Some philosophers would take this theory to a great height. After understanding that death is real and nothing could stop it from happening, they would find out the possibilities after death? Do we die completely or still there is something left after death? These types of questions make philosophers query into the theory of reality. They say that something which has ended, is temporary or which undergoes complete extinction; cannot be said to be real. ‘When we are born, we would die’; ‘whatever is created has its expiration period’; and conclusively ‘the things which could be destructed is unreal or temporary’.This is a common saying by philosophers.

Knowing Reality

Now again to the same question ‘what is real then?’ Because thing we see around us changes or destroys with time, so they could not be considered as real.

This makes the conclusion that “real” is something which is indestructible, which is not temporary and which is forever. It has no origin, no source and no end. Real is something which is beyond time and space.

Ancient Greek Philosophers and ‘the concept of being’

Many natural philosophers of ancient Greece have tried to define the first principle or the ultimate reality or the ultimate cause of this universe. They tried to find out the essence of this objective world. Firstly, they tried to understand the objectivity of the world, then they moved to subjectivism. The interest was shifted from external nature to the internal nature of logic, ethics, psychology, politics, arts, ethics and conducts.

The first great problem of external nature was studied in the pre-sophistic period. The philosophers of naturalistic period tried to find out the nature of the substance from which this world is made. It was like ‘What is the basic substance responsible for the origin of ‘being’?’ The second was the problem of change: ‘How could change be defined?’

Nature Philosophers

Earlier nature philosophers of the Milesian school are- Thales, Anaximander, Anaximenes. They have given the reason for the first principle to the natural substances. Thales defines the first principle as water whereas Anaximander believes that ultimate reality in boundless –which is not a thing. Anaximenes says that the first principle is air.

Pythagoreans see the ultimate reality in numbers. Numbers are the basic things because everything around us could be explained in terms of numbers. They fix their attention not so much upon a concrete, sense-perceived substance, but on the relation existing between two things, the order, uniformity, or harmony in the world. For more information on Pythagorean Theory of being, you could refer here.

The problem concerning the nature of substances or being (reality) was given some sort of definitions, the next problem was the theory of change.

Theory of change

The problem of change emerges in a radical form in Heraclitus and in the Eleatic school, of which Parmenides is the chief exponent. The question for them is not so much how the change takes place but whether there is any change at all. For Heraclitus, change is ultimate and permanence a mere sensory appearance. For Parmenides, the permanent is fundamental and change a mere appearance.

Later, Empedocles and Anaxagoras gave attention to both the problem of substance or reality as well as change. Empedocles and Anaxagoras agree with the Eleatics that absolute change is impossible, that nothing can become anything else, in the literal sense of the term. ‘Nothing can come from nothing; nothing can go into nothing, and nothing can change into anything absolutely different.’ Nevertheless- and in this way, they agree with the Heraclitus – things do change. The change, however, is only relative and not absolute.

Heraclitus nature of Being

The fundamental thought in the teaching of Heraclitus is that the universe is in a state of ceaseless change.

“Everything is in a state of flux”

‘One cannot step into the same river twice’.

For Heraclitus, the universal fire is the first principle, the most mobile substance he knows, something that never seems to come to rest, the ever-living fire- sometimes called by him vapour or breath – which is regarded by him as the vital principle in the organisms and the essence of the soul.

The primal unity itself is in constant motion and change, its creation is destruction; its destruction is creation. Everything is changed into its opposite and everything, therefore, is a union of opposite qualities.

Parmenides nature of Being.

According to Parmenides, there can be only one eternal, underived, unchangeable being. Since it is all alike and there cannot be anything in it but being, it must be continuous and indivisible. There cannot be any break in it, it is continuous. It must be immovable, for there is no non-being(empty space) for it to move in. Moreover, being and thought are one, for what cannot be thought cannot be, i.e, non-being cannot be thought.

Being or reality is a homogenous, continuous, indeterminate mass- which the aesthetic imagination of the philosopher’s pictures as a sphere- endowed with reason, eternal, and immutable.

According to Parmenides, the world is unity, unchangeable, and immovable. Sense perception, on the other hand, reveals to us a world of plurality and change; this is the world of appearance and opinion.

Atomists nature of Being.

The atoms and the empty space in which they move are the sole realities for the atomists: everything is void. Being or the full, and non-being, or the void, are equally real, that is real is not one continuous, undivided, immovable being, as the Eleatics held, but the plurality, an infinite number of beings separated from one another by empty space. All bodies are combinations of atoms and spaces; origin means union: destruction; separation.

Summary

Though there are some unanswered questions on the origin of being. But, the nature of being is somewhat made clear by the theory of philosophers of the various time. By knowing the nature of being, we can conclude the purpose of our existenc, space and many other forces responsible for the universe operation or function.

It is difficult to define the actual nature of our being. But, throughout humanity, people are trying to find out the complete meaning of the existence of being.

Hope you liked all the important definitions of ‘Being’ in one frame. I would love to hear your views on these concepts.

Thanks for sparing time and reading this blog. 🙂

Cosmology of Pythagoras

Pre-socratic philosophers were the earlier Greek Philosophers. They tried to explain the nature of ultimate reality other than what was previously considered in mythological context. In myths and earlier historical context, ultimate reality was  termed as religious-the God or Goddesses or the characters significant in Greek texts.

Pre-socratic concept of Materialism

miletius
Presocratic came up with the idea of defining the nature of ultimate reality in Materialistic concept. They give the material substance as the ultimate cause of creation. According to them, the matter is the cause of all material substance of this universe. Different materialistic elements have been chosen by the Greek Philosophers to determine the nature of Ultimate Reality.  Thales gave his theory to water as the ultimate cause. Anaximenes like Thales has said air as the material cause of all. Anaximander has contradicted materialistic views. He believed that there is something above all material substances and that is the ultimate cause behind the creation of all. Anaximander called it boundless, unlimited, formless and vague. He is able to define the qualities but failed in giving the proper name to it.

Pythagoras Theology

All these Philosophers belong to Miletius school who tried to define the Ultimate Reality. Pythagoras like other philosophers also believed that there is some principle behind the creation of all. Pythagoras is considered as the disciple of Anaximander. Pythagoras has said that the world is rhythmic and in harmony so its ultimate cause should also have something related to it. Numbers is the first principle of this universe according to Pythagoras. From numbers, arises points; from points, arises lines; from lines,plane figure; from plane figure, solid figure; from solid figure, sensible bodies, the elements of which are four- fire , water , earth and air; these elements interchange and turn into one another completely, and combine to produce a universe animate, intelligent, spherical, with the Earth at its centre, the Earth itself is spherical and in round shape.
Everything in this universe can be classified in numbers. There is nothing in this world which cannot be explained in terms of numbers. Though Pythagoras also failed to tell exactly how a number is possible for the creation of this whole world, he was satisfied in telling that the creation of this universe can also be credited to numbers.

Historically, Pythagoras meant much more than the mathematical theory of pythagoras Theorem of Right Triangles. The Pythagoras Theorem is considered as a source of inspiration for the Plato and Aristotle. Followers of Pythagoras are called Pythagoreans.

Pythagoras Philosophy

transmigration of soul.jpg

Pythagoreans also accepted the idea of soul and transmigration. They were the first philosophers to fully accept the idea of soul and its transmigration.  Pythagorean schools taught the precepts such as :

  • To abstain from eating Beans, also follow Non-Vegetarianism.
  • Not to pick up what has fallen.
  • They regarded men & women equally.
  • They enjoyed a common way of life.

Pythagoras believed that there are three types of people in this world. Just like three strangers in a match of Olympia. The one who is a salesman, the second who is observer/audience and the third is a player. The same is in life where we may always come across these three types of person. This was the view held by Pythagoreans.

Nature of numbers

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According to Pythagoras, numbers were the first principle. Everything has originated from the number. Pythagoras claimed that everything can be classified into two categories- odd-even, feminine-masculine, rational-irrational, limited-unlimited, one-many, right-left, rest-motion, straight-crooked, light-darkness, Good-evil, square-oblong.

All things of the Universe has a numerical attribute.

One- Number of Reason.
Two-First even, or female number, number of opinions.
Three-First true male number, number of harmonies.
Four- Number of Justice or retribution.
Five- Marriage
Six- Number of creation.
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.Ten – Number of the Ultimate Universe.

According to Pythagoras, mathematics is important in the human beings life. Particularly numbers are the basic things in the mathematics. Numbers are related to everything i.e, incorporeal and non-corporeal world. All things are numerable and can be counted. Pythagoreans has introduced many important concepts in Mathematics- Prime Number, Composite Number, Even, Odd, Pythagoras-Theorem, Pentagram, Polygon and Theory of Propositions.

Astronomical Concepts

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Pythagoreans were also an astronomer. According to their theory, the Earth, Moon, the Sun and Planets move around the unseen Natural fire, in the 5th Century BC. This astronomical belief was taken to be true for a longer period of time.  Until the Copernicus gave his theory of revolution of planets orbiting around the big star i.e., Sun in a circular path and at a uniform speed.

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