Monthly Archives: February 2012

O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend the brightest heaven of invention.

A curious thing about studying the Presocratics, the commentaries and secondary literature in particular, is how completely hidden remains the simple fact that what one is actually studying is ancient poetry. What generally confronts you in the commentaries are assertions, … Continue reading

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Heraclitus: Closing Colophon

The truth is that Heraclitus attracts exegetes as an empty jampot wasps; and each new wasp discerns traces of his own favourite flavour. — Jonathan Barnes, page 57.

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Parmenides the Poster Boy

One thing that gains Parmenides a philosophers’ merit-award… is the idea of proving his point. * Of course, you probably wouldn’t get away with merely suggesting that nothing ever changes, that what was, is, and always ever shall be. That’s … Continue reading

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Strasbourg Moon

Actually it’s roughly a half-hour walk starting from here on Rue Humann to the Bibliothèque nationale et universitaire de Strasbourg where this blog post begins in this historic Lutheran humanist university town. But as you can see from the photo … Continue reading

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Heraclitus: Opening Salvo

“To God all things are fair and good and right, but men hold some things wrong and some right.” – Heraclitus, Fragment 102. “This is, of course, the inevitable conclusion of a pantheistic philosophy—that everything is justified sub specie aeternitatis. … Continue reading

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La Nouvelle Théologie c. 570 – c. 475 BCE

…it is plain that Xenophanes differed considerably from the Milesians or Heraclitus or Parmenides. He was a poet with thoughtful interests, especially about religion and the gods, which led him to react against the archetype of poets and the mainstay … Continue reading

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Before there was Copernicus…

… there was the ancient society of Pythagoreans, for whom not only was the earth spherical, but it is not the centre of the universe. The earth and the planets revolve — along with the sun — round the central … Continue reading

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