'The god wanted everything to be good, marred by as little imperfection as possible.' Timaeus, one of Plato's acknowledged masterpieces, is an attempt to construct the universe and explain its contents by means of as few axioms as possible. The result is a brilliant, bizarre, and surreal cosmos - the product of the rational thinking of a creator god and his astral assistants, and of purely mechanistic causes based on the behaviour of the four elements. At times dazzlingly clear, at times intriguingly opaque, this was state-of-the-art science in the middle of the fourth century BC. The world is presented as a battlefield of forces that are unified only by the will of God, who had to do the best he could with recalcitrant building materials. The unfinished companion piece, Critias, is the foundational text for the story of Atlantis. It tells how a model society became corrupt, and how a lost race of Athenians defeated the aggression of the invading Atlanteans. This new edition combines the clearest translation yet of these crucial ancient texts with an illuminating introduction and diagrams. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
This volume brings together ten of the most celebrated Platonic myths, from eight of Plato's dialogues ranging from the early Protagoras and Gorgias to the late Timaeus and Critias. They include the famous myth of the cave from Republic as well as 'The Judgement of Souls' and 'The Birth of Love'. Each myth is a self-contained story, prefaced by a short explanatory note, while the introduction considers Plato's use of myth and imagery.
Author: Chris L. de Wet
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Release Date: 2017-07-14
This volume examines the prevalence, function, and socio-political effects of slavery discourse in the major theological formulations of the late third to early fifth centuries AD, arguably the most formative period of early Christian doctrine. The question the book poses is this: in what way did the Christian theologians of the third, fourth, and early fifth centuries appropriate the discourse of slavery in their theological formulations, and what could the effect of this appropriation have been for actual physical slaves? This fascinating study is crucial reading for anyone with an interest in early Christianity or Late Antiquity, and slavery more generally.
Reading the corpus of texts written by the Fathers of the Church has always been a core area in Christian theology. However, scholars and academics are by no means united in the question how these important but difficult authors should be read and interpreted. Many of them are divided by implicit (but often unquestioned) assumptions about the best way to approach the texts or by underlying hermeneutical questions about the norms, limits and opportunities of reading Ancient Christian writers. This book will raise profound hermeneutical questions surrounding the reading of the Fathers with greater clarity than it has been done before. The contributors to this volume are theologians and historians who have used contemporary post-modern approaches to illuminate the Ancien corpus of texts. The chapters discuss issues such as What makes a 'good' reading of a church Father? What constitutes a 'responsible' reading? Is the reading of the Fathers limited to a specialist audience? What can modern thinkers contribute to our reading of the Fathers?
'What exactly is knowledge?' The Theaetetus is a seminal text in the philosophy of knowledge, and is acknowledged as one of Plato's finest works. Cast as a conversation between Socrates and a clever but modest student, Theaetetus, it explores one of the key issues in philosophy: what is knowledge? Though no definite answer is reached, the discussion is penetrating and wide-ranging, covering the claims of perception to be knowledge, the theory that all is in motion, and the perennially tempting idea that knowledge and truth are relative to different individuals or states. The inquirers go on to explore the connection between knowledge and true judgement, and the famous threefold definition of knowledge as justified true belief. Packed with subtle arguments, the dialogue is also a work of literary genius, with an unforgettable portrait of Socrates as a midwife of wisdom. This new edition uses the acclaimed translation by John McDowell. It includes a valuable introduction that locates the work in Plato's oeuvre, and explains some of the competing interpretations of its overall meaning. The notes elucidate Plato's arguments and draw connections within the work and with other philosophical discussions. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Although deconstruction has become a popular catchword, as an intellectual movement it has never entirely caught on within the university. For some in the academy, deconstruction, and Jacques Derrida in particular, are responsible for the demise of accountability in the study of literature. Countering these facile dismissals of Derrida and deconstruction, Herman Rapaport explores the incoherence that has plagued critical theory since the 1960s and the resulting legitimacy crisis in the humanities. Against the backdrop of a rich, informed discussion of Derrida's writings -- and how they have been misconstrued by critics and admirers alike -- The Theory Mess investigates the vicissitudes of Anglo-American criticism over the past thirty years and proposes some possibilities for reform.
Author: Ian Lawton
Publisher: Virgin Pub
Release Date: 2004
Brief Old Testament references to a former civilisation that was destroyed by the Flood have fascinated scholars for centuries, giving rise to exotic speculations ranging from the advanced technology of Atlantis through to extraterrestrial visitors. But it is only now that one British researcher’s ten-year quest has brought together the entire body of accounts of an antediluvian race from across the globe - from the ancient texts of Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, China, Greece and Scandinavia, to the sacred traditions of indigenous peoples from the Americas, Africa, Indonesia and Australasia – with stunning results. GENESIS UNVEILED: The Lost Wisdom of our Forgotten Ancestors is the result of that painstaking quest, and its conclusions are unlike anything you have read before. Like other notable revisionist historians, Ian Lawton argues that our forebears were far more culturally advanced than has been previously believed - to the extent that they built sizeable settlements and navigated the oceans to trade. He backs up this belief with tantalising evidence from archaeology. Yet the most significant common theme uniting the ancient traditions is that our ‘forgotten race’ was originally highly spiritual but became increasingly obsessed with the material world before it perished in a global catastrophe – which geological and other evidence suggests occurred around 11,500 years ago. Throughout Genesis Unveiled the author’s reinterpretations of ancient sacred texts are underpinned by a spiritual ethos based on the principles of karma and reincarnation. So the catastrophe is seen as a karmic event brought about by our forgotten race’s fall from grace. As to how a spiritual worldview was first brought into human consciousness, he argues that underlying the various accounts of the creation of man and of mankind’s ‘civilisation’ by various ‘sages’ is the genuine reality that the genus Homo had at some point evolved sufficiently in physical, psychological and physiological terms that it was ready to play host to the first advanced souls to incarnate in human form. He argues that this would have represented the most significant cultural impetus ever to the evolution of humanity, and that it can be practically tied into the first signs of ritual burial in the archaeological record, which date back 100,000 years to a site in Israel. This surely represents the point at which our ancestors first appreciated that the soul lives on after death, and that there are ethereal realms in addition to the physical world around us – a view that would lead tens of thousands of years later to the wonderful shamanic cave paintings of Western Europe. Yet perhaps the most stunning scholastic discovery in Genesis Unveiled is Lawton’s revelation of the incredible consistency and esoteric wisdom of all origin myths right across the world, which has been completely overlooked by orthodox scholars who insist on purely psychological interpretations. Moreover, the timeless and universal truths contained in them have been dramatically reconfirmed by modern theoretical science in recent decades, with the revelations that everything is energy, that matter is an illusion, that everything is interconnected, that everything has consciousness, and that there are multiple other dimensions beyond the apparently physical. As a result, the author is able to lay out a philosophical and historical framework that merges a scientific, evolutionary perspective with a spiritual worldview - with no inherent conflicts or contradictions. Above all, Genesis Unveiled emphasises that the theme of a debased and materialistic culture that perished when it lost touch with its spiritual roots is one that we should heed carefully - for if we can come to recognise the path we are now treading as one our ancestors have been down before, we may be able to fundamentally alter our priorities and reconnect ourselves with our spiritual roots before universal karma once again decides enough is enough… Genesis Unveiled represents: 1. The first serious attempt to bring all the precatastrophe texts and traditions from around the world together for comparison. 2. The first time the catastrophe of 11,500 years ago has been viewed in its proper context as a karmic event based on our antediluvian ancestors fall from spiritual grace. 3. The first time the incredible consistency and esoteric wisdom of the origin traditions from all around the world has been revealed. 4. The first philosophically logical merger of a spiritual and scientific worldview. 5. The first attempt at a spiritual prehistory of mankind with relevance to the modern world.
Release Date: 2001
Genre: American literature
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Author: Christopher Gill
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2017-04
This book aims to bring together all the evidence relevant for understanding Plato's Atlantis Story, providing the Greek text of the relevant Platonic texts (the start of Plato's Timaeus and the incomplete Critias), together with a commentary on language and content, and a full vocabulary of Greek words. This essential work also offers a new translation of these texts and a full introduction. The book has two special objectives. The introduction offers a full-scale interpretative reading of the Atlantis story, focused on the philosophical meaning of the story and the significance of Plato's presentation, and responding to recent scholarly discussion of these questions. In conjunction with the new translation, this introduction provides a point of entry to a fascinating story for a wide range of readers. The introduction also discusses the question whether the story had a factual basis, and assesses possible links with Minoan Crete. Secondly, the Greek text (the Oxford Classical text) and commentary are juxtaposed and presented in 'bite-size' chunks making it easy to use and helpful especially for students using the book to improve their Greek. The notes provide full grammatical and linguistic help as well as pointers on the philosophical content and presentation, supported by the translation and complete vocabulary of Greek terms. The book is a second edition of one published in 1980. This edition has a new translation, a much fuller introduction, revised and updated notes and a new commentary format.
Author: Mary-Jane Rubenstein
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release Date: 2014-01-28
"Multiverse" cosmologies imagine our universe as just one of a vast number of others. While this idea has captivated philosophy, religion, and literature for millennia, it is now being considered as a scientific hypothesis—with different models emerging from cosmology, quantum mechanics, and string theory. Beginning with ancient Atomist and Stoic philosophies, Mary-Jane Rubenstein links contemporary models of the multiverse to their forerunners and explores the reasons for their recent appearance. One concerns the so-called fine-tuning of the universe: nature's constants are so delicately calibrated that it seems they have been set just right to allow life to emerge. For some thinkers, these "fine-tunings" are evidence of the existence of God; for others, however, and for most physicists, "God" is an insufficient scientific explanation. Hence the allure of the multiverse: if all possible worlds exist somewhere, then like monkeys hammering out Shakespeare, one universe is bound to be suitable for life. Of course, this hypothesis replaces God with an equally baffling article of faith: the existence of universes beyond, before, or after our own, eternally generated yet forever inaccessible to observation or experiment. In their very efforts to sidestep metaphysics, theoretical physicists propose multiverse scenarios that collide with it and even produce counter-theological narratives. Far from invalidating multiverse hypotheses, Rubenstein argues, this interdisciplinary collision actually secures their scientific viability. We may therefore be witnessing a radical reconfiguration of physics, philosophy, and religion in the modern turn to the multiverse.