Article published in:Bochumer Philosophisches Jahrbuch für Antike und Mittelalter: Band 1. 1996
Herausgegeben von Burkhard Mojsisch, Olaf Pluta und Rudolf Rehn
[Bochumer Philosophisches Jahrbuch für Antike und Mittelalter 1] 1996
► pp. 23–37
The Ontological Relation "One-Many" according to the Neoplatonist Damascius
Abstract In his commentary on the Platonic dialogue Philebus, the Neoplatonic philosopher Damascius investigates the ontological question of the relation between the One as the highest principle and the many sensible beings produced through it. Three points are emphasized: 1. Damascius attempts to situate movement in the metaphysical realm and avoid a static metaphysical model by propounding a connection between sensible beings and their productive archetype through what he conceives as metaphysical amplification. 2. His explication of the relation between the physical and the metaphysical indicates that he is not concerned with just a general description, but instead intends to specify the forms of their mutual communication. To a certain degree, physical beings are presented as developments of metaphysical states in terms of the relation of "appearance" to "being," in the sense that the appearance teleologically portrays that which is ontologically complete. 3. Because Damascius sets logic in analytic relation to ontology and defines the conditions of this coordination, it gains no independent status, even as its propriety becomes explicit, for he shows its principal determination by ontology. Hence, Damascius remains within the framework of a consistent ontological realism.
Published online: 23 July 1997