Proclus on nature: philosophy of nature and its methods in by Marije Martijn

By Marije Martijn

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69 For the evidence see Opsomer (: –). g. In Remp. –. 70 In Parm. – Cousin), esp. – (– Cousin): π τ ς φυσ ως τ ς κροτ της κα πηγα ας προϋπαρχο σης τ ν πολλ ν φ σεων). Note that nature is the source only of their appetitive powers ( ρεξις). The irrational souls owe their cognitive powers to the Demiurge (In Parm. – (– Cousin)).  ff. )). Cf. In Remp.  ff. for the relation φ σις, fate, and vegetative part/kind of soul, and why τ φυτ . . π φ σεως ν μασται. 71 Cf. Opsomer (: ).

Plato’s φ σις One of the difficulties Proclus must have encountered in describing a Platonic notion of nature concerns his source material: Plato himself hardly ever characterizes nature as such, let alone discusses it. Of course, in accordance with good Neoplatonic practice, the theory on φ σις offered is really that of Proclus, rather than Plato, but as we will see our commentator does find the source of his theory in Plato. 11 At Phaedo a ff. 12 Crudely speaking, nature here refers to the class of objects that are subject to generation and perishing.

For nature as form see Arist. Phys. ; cf. Met. XII  a–. 26 Cf. Schneider (: ). For nature as source of motion see Arist. Phys. III  b–, Cael. I  b. 27 In Tim. . 28 In Tim. . Cf. Festugière (–: vol. I,  n. ). 29 Arist. Phys. II  b–. 30 Plato Laws X b ff. 31 In Tim. –. Perhaps Proclus is here confusing the Peripatetic theory that physical changes start from the four δυν μεις cold, warm, dry and moist (Arist. Meteor. g. at Arist. PA II  a ff.

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