Ancient Philosophy in “The Power of Ideas” by Moore and Bruder

Explain and evaluate the view of Heraclitus regarding the nature of reality

Heraclitus is a well known Greek philosopher who was trying to explain the nature of things and the world. He was deeply consumed that everything which surrounds us was made of fire. He thought that it was the basic element in our Universe. It changes constantly; that is why our world is very changeable. However, this change is not accidental, and it is determined by some cosmic order, which he called logos. Inconstancy of the Universe determines instability of human beings and objects which surround them. It is an interesting idea which seems to be very disputable, as it also touches the question of humans identity.

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Explain and evaluate the view of Empedocles

Another philosopher who was trying to describe the Universe and explain its main regularities was Empedocles. He suggests the idea that our reality is permanent and unchangeable. However, he does not deny any changes at all. He tries to combine some different points of view. He states that objects change, but they are made of particles which are permanent. These unchangeable particles are water, fire, earth and air. They are basic elements for different combinations which help to create the majority of objects in the world. His ideas seem to be very innovatory for his age.

Explain and evaluate the view of Anaximander

Anaximander is one of the ancient Greek philosophers who had his own ideas about our world, its organization and its main elements. Being a pupil of Thales, he thought that the basic substance of the Universe should be boundless and uncertain. His idea is that our world is surrounded by fire, which is presented by stars. Moreover, he suggested his own theory of change of seasons which was explained by the difference in powers of heat, cold, wetness and dryness (Moore & Bruder, 2010). He tried to explain the organization of our Universe in terms of some natural processes, underlining importance natural powers.

Explain, evaluate and compare the views of Parmenides and Heraclitus

Parmenides is another philosopher who was trying to understand the main principles of our Universe and analyze them. His ideas were opposite to ideas of Heraclitus. He thought that the Universe was not changeable. He did not support Heraclitus idea of the changeable character of the Universe. He also was not interested in determining the basic substance of the world as it did not seem prior to him. He was more interested in principles according to which it was possible to analyze the Universe

Explain and evaluate the views of Protagoras

Protagoras is famous for his suggestion that there is no absolute knowledge in the world. He is an adherer of the idea that everything in the world is determined by a man and that is why people cannot obtain objective knowledge about the current state of affairs, as trying to investigate some object a man changes it, adding something new to its nature and structure. That is why knowledge of one person is as valuable and correct as knowledge of another person, as they investigate one object from different perspectives.

Explain and evaluate the views of Pythagoras

Pythagoras is another famous ancient philosopher who influenced the development of our understanding of this world greatly. Being known for his great passion for arithmetic, he states that things are numbers. If a thing differs from another thing, it is due to the difference in numbers, their order and character. It is possible to conclude that Pythagoras managed to combine mathematics and philosophy, creating an absolutely new approach to the understanding of our reality. His idea that everything can be counted and explained with the help of numbers finds its further development and adherers all over the world.

Explain and evaluate the views of Anaxagoras

Anaxagoras was the first ancient Greek philosopher who introduced a distinction between matter and mind. He was sure that everything was infinitely divisible. He stated that all motion was determined by nous, which was something between mind and reason. He believed that things consisted of the same particles, however, their order and slightest differences determined divergences between objects. Having analyzed the main ideas of Anaxagoras, it is possible to admit that his works were an important step in the history of the development of philosophy.

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Explain, in your opinion, which, if any, of the early Greeks had a reasonable conception of the nature of reality

Having analyzed different ideas of ancient philosophers, it is possible to make some conclusions. There are different points of view on the Universe and the world; however, we should say that ideas of Heraclitus seem to be the most interesting for analysis. His proposal that our Universe is not constant and every object is changing at every instant seem to be very objective and close to reality. We live in a very changeable world, and even ancient philosophers managed to admit it. Heraclitus idea that everything is made of fire seems ridiculous now, though, his other thoughts are very reasonable.

Explain and evaluate Plato’s criticism of the views of Protagoras as others that argue that knowledge is relative

Plato is a famous philosopher of ancient times, and his works influenced the development of different sciences greatly. He also tried to understand our Universe better and analyze laws according to which it functions. He was interested in the origin of knowledge. Plato was an opponent of Protagoras theory that all knowledge is relative. He explained his position in Theaetetus, saying that if Protagoras theory was true, it was impossible to find real knowledge and some correct answer to mysteries of the Universe as every man was right in his suggestion as knowledge was very changeable and depended on a person.

Explain and evaluate how Plato claims people can know the Forms

Plato is also famous for his Theory of Forms. According to this theory, the reality is presented not by objects which we meet in our everyday life, but by Forms, which are a persons intellectual understanding of an object. Forms are endless and even eternal. People can get an image of these Forms analyzing objects and understanding their inner nature, trying to find the hidden beauty of different things. It is very easy to confuse these Forms with ideas. However, they are not the same. It is difficult to understand the difference as it is rather vague.

Explain and evaluate Aristotle’s notion of the 4 causes

Aristotle is another philosopher who was trying to investigate the nature of things. He was an adherer of the idea that things changed and this change was inevitable. However, he introduced four causes of a thing which could explain the nature of that change. They are formal, material, efficient and final causes. They describe the nature of a thing, its material, creator of a thing and a purpose of its creation and existence. Having outlined these four causes, Aristotle tried to show the nature of things and changes. This idea seems to be rather logic and clear for understanding.

Explain and evaluate Aristotle’s 10 categories

Aristotle also developed ten categories of being. He thought that these categories could serve as an alternative way for people to investigate the Universe and the nature of things. He named them substance, quality, quantity, relationships, place, time, posture, passivity. Activity and constitution (Moore & Bruder, 2010). These categories can be applied to any object in the Universe to describe its characteristics and laws according to which it functions. They seem to be the first attempt to make a detailed list of qualities which any existing object has. That is why it is possible to speak about their great value.

Compare and Contrast Plato’s view of Forms with Aristotle’s view of forms

Aristotle also had his own idea about Platos Theory of Forms. He did not agree with Platos ideas and suggestions about forms. According to Aristotle, Platos Forms are universals. They have a larger meaning. Universal is something more than just a simple person can be (Moore & Bruder, 2010). He managed to show weak points of Platos Theory of Forms, however, he did not manage to explain the advantages of his universals and their clear meaning properly. Debates between the two philosophers influenced the further development of philosophy. However, Plato and Aristotle were not able to give a clear and understandable definition for their ideas and terms.

Explain and evaluate Aristotle’s third man argument and theory of forms

Trying to criticize and oppose Platos Theory of Forms Aristotle created his own work which served as the main argument in this debate. This work is known as the Third Man argument. Plato said that the Form circularity was the thing which tied two circular coins together. However, Aristotle asked if there was a thing which tied these coins with the Form circularity. This argument is quite obvious, and it becomes easy to understand the weak point in Platos theory.

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Aristotle says “Everything which comes into being is brought about by something [else]” if that were the case, would existence not be a paradox as Gorgias points out? Explain.

The paradox could not be observed in Aristotles statement as it is quite obvious that everything in the world is determined by certain processes. Development of things and objects is conditioned by a great number of different reasons. That is why it is possible to say that the paradox cannot be seen in these words, and they are quite logic.

Reference List

Moore, B., & Bruder, K. (2010). Philosophy: The Power Of Ideas. New York: McGraw-Hill Humanities.

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StudyCorgi. "Ancient Philosophy in "The Power of Ideas" by Moore and Bruder." January 29, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/ancient-philosophy-in-the-power-of-ideas-by-moore-and-bruder/.

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StudyCorgi. 2021. "Ancient Philosophy in "The Power of Ideas" by Moore and Bruder." January 29, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/ancient-philosophy-in-the-power-of-ideas-by-moore-and-bruder/.

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StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Ancient Philosophy in "The Power of Ideas" by Moore and Bruder'. 29 January.

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