pc加拿大28代理

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pc加拿大28代理

Epicurus was assuredly not a master of language, but had he meant all that is here put into his mouth, he would hardly have been at a loss for words to say it. Remembering that the Κ?ριαι δ?ξαι constituted a sort of creed drawn up by the master himself for his disciples to learn by heart,144 and that the incriminated passage is one of the articles in that creed, we need only look at the context to make certain that it has been entirely misread by his apologist.145 In the three preceding articles, we are told that justice is by nature a contract for the prevention of aggressions, that it does not exist among animals which are unable, nor among tribes of men which are either unable or unwilling to enter into such an agreement, and—with reiterated emphasis—that, apart from contracts, it has no original existence (o?κ ?ν τ? καθ’ ?αυτ? δικαιοσ?νη). There is nothing at all about a true as distinguished from a false justice; there is no allusion whatever to the theories of any ‘contemporaries of Socrates;’ the polemic reference, if any, is to Plato, and to Plato alone. Then comes the declaration quoted above, to the effect that injustice is not an evil in itself, but only an evil through the dread of punishment which it produces. Now, by injustice, Epicurus must simply mean the opposite of what he defined justice to be in the preceding paragraph—that is, a breach of the agreement not to hurt one another (μ? βλ?πτειν ?λλ?λου?). The authority of the State is evidently conceived, not as superseding, but as enforcing agreements. The succeeding article still further confirms the view rejected by Mr. Wallace. Epicurus tells us that no man who stealthily evades the contract to abstain from mutual aggressions can be sure of escaping detection. This is72 evidently added to show that, apart from any mystical sanctions, fear of punishment is quite enough to deter a prudent man from committing crimes. And we can see that no other deterrent was recognised by Lucretius, when, in evident reference to his master’s words, he mentions the fears of those who offend—not against mere conventional rules, but against human rights in general—as the great safeguard of justice.146All these circumstances taken together would permit the Roman women to have opinions of their own if they liked, and would ensure a respectful hearing for whatever they had to say; while the men who had opinions to propagate would, for the same reason, be deeply interested in securing their adhesion. On the other hand, they received a good literary education, being sent apparently to the same schools as their brothers, and there made acquainted with, at least, the Latin poets.322 Thus they would possess the degree of culture necessary for readily receiving and transmitting new impressions. And we know, as a matter of fact, that many Roman ladies entered eagerly into the literary movement of the age, sharing the studies of their husbands, discoursing on questions of grammar, freely expressing their opinion on the relative merits of different poets, and even attempting authorship on their own account.323 Philosophy, as it was then taught, attracted a considerable share of their attention; and some great ladies were constantly attended by a Stoic professor, to whose lectures they listened seemingly with more patience210 than profit.324 One of their favourite studies was Plato’s Republic, according to Epictêtus, because it advocated a community of wives;325 or, as we may more charitably suggest, because it admitted women to an equality with men. But there is no evidence to prove that their inquisitiveness ever went to the length of questioning the foundations of religious faith; and we may fairly reckon their increasing influence among the forces which were tending to bring about an overwhelming religious revival among the educated classes.While not absolutely condemning suicide, Plotinus restricts the right of leaving this world within much narrower limits than were assigned to it by the Stoics. In violently separating herself from the body, the soul, he tells us, is acting under the influence of some evil passion, and he intimates that the mischievous effects of this passion will prolong themselves into the new life on which she is destined to enter.497 Translated into more abstract language, his meaning probably is that the feelings which ordinarily prompt to suicide, are such as would not exist in a well-regulated mind. It is333 remarkable that Schopenhauer, whose views of life were, on other points, the very reverse of those held by Plotinus, should have used very much the same argument against self-destruction. According to his theory, the will to life, which it should be our principal business to conquer, asserts itself strongly in the wish to escape from suffering, and only delays the final moment of peaceful extinction by rushing from one phase of existence to another. And in order to prove the possibility of such a revival, Schopenhauer was obliged to graft on his philosophy a theory of metempsychosis, which, but for this necessity, would certainly never have found a place in it at all. In this, as in many other instances, an ethical doctrine is apparently deduced from a metaphysical doctrine which has, in reality, been manufactured for its support. All systems do but present under different formulas a common fund of social sentiment. A constantly growing body of public opinion teaches us that we do not belong to ourselves, but to those about us, and that, in ordinary circumstances, it is no less weak and selfish to run away from life than to run away from death. pc加拿大28代理 46That Aenesidêmus held this view is stated as a fact by Sextus, whose testimony is here corroborated by Tertullian, or rather by Tertullian’s informant, Soranus. We find, however, that Zeller, who formerly accepted the statement in question as true, has latterly seen reason to reject it.188 Aenesidêmus cannot, he thinks, have been guilty of so great an inconsistency as to base his Scepticism on the dogmatic physics of Heracleitus. And he explains the agreement of the ancient authorities by supposing that the original work of Aenesidêmus contained a critical account of the Heracleitean theory, that this was misinterpreted into an expression of his adhesion to it by Soranus, and that the blunder was adopted at second-hand by both Sextus and Tertullian.299By combining the various considerations here suggested we shall arrive at a clearer understanding of the sceptical attitude commonly attributed to Socrates. There is, first of all, the negative and critical function exercised by him in common with many other constructive thinkers, and intimately associated with a fundamental law of Greek thought. Then there is the Attic courtesy and democratic spirit leading him to avoid any assumption of superiority over those whose opinions he is examining. And, lastly, there is the profound feeling that truth is a common possession, which no individual can appropriate as his peculiar privilege, because it can only be discovered, tested, and preserved by the united efforts of all.Yet, if the conception of unity was gaining ground, the conceptions of purpose and vitality must have been growing weaker as the triumph of brute force prolonged itself without limit or hope of redress. Hence Stoicism in its later form shows a tendency to dissociate the dynamism of Heracleitus from the teleology of Socrates, and to lean on the former rather than on the latter for support. One symptom of this changed attitude is a blind worship of power for its own sake. We find the renunciation of pleasure and the defiance of pain appreciated more from an aesthetic than from an ethical point of view; they are exalted almost in the spirit of a Red Indian, not as means to higher ends, but as manifestations of unconquerable strength; and sometimes the highest sanction of duty takes the form of a morbid craving for applause, as if the universe were an amphitheatre and life a gladiatorial game.102After Apuleius, Platonism, outside the lecture rooms of Athens, becomes identified with Pythagoreanism, and both with dogmatic theology. In this direction, philosophy was feeling its way towards a reconciliation with two great Oriental religions, Hebrew monotheism and Medo-Persian dualism. The first advances had come from religion. Aristobulus, an Alexandrian Jew (B.C. 160), was apparently the first to detect an analogy between the later speculations of Plato and his own hereditary faith. Both taught that the world had been created by a single supreme God. Both were penetrated with the purest ethical ideas. Both associated sensuality and idolatry in the same vehement denunciations. The conclusion was obvious. What had been supernaturally revealed to the chosen people could not have been discovered elsewhere by a simple exercise of human reason. Plato must have borrowed his wisdom from Moses.398 At a later period, the celebrated Philo, following up the clue thus furnished, proceeded to evolve the whole of Greek philosophy from the Pentateuch. An elaborate system of allegorical interpretation, borrowed from the Stoics, was the instrument with which he effected his enterprise. The result was what might have been foreseen—a complete Hellenisation of Hebrew religion.257 Circumscription, antithesis, and mediation were, as we know, the chief moments of Greek thought. Philo rearranged his monotheistic system according to the scheme which they supplied. He first determined the divine unity with such logical precision as to place God out of relation to the world. Then, in the true Greek spirit, he placed at the other end of his metaphysical scale matter—the shifting, formless, shadowy residuum left behind when every ideal element has been thought away from the world. So conceived, matter became, what it had been to Plato, the principle of all evil, and therefore something with which God could not possibly be brought into contact. Accordingly, the process of creation is made intelligible by the interposition of a connecting link in the shape of certain hypostasised divine attributes or forces, represented as at the same time belonging to and distinct from the divine personality. Of these the most important are the goodness to which the world owes its origin, and the power by which it is governed. Both are united in the Logos or Word. This last idea—which, by the way, was derived not from Plato but from the Stoics—sums up in itself the totality of mediatorial functions by which God and the world are put into communication with one another. In like manner, Plato had interposed a universal soul between his Ideas and the world of sensible appearances, and had pointed to an arrangement of the Ideas themselves by which we could ascend in thought to a contemplation of the absolute good. There seems, however, to be a difference between the original Hellenic conception and the same conception as adapted to Oriental ways of thinking. With Plato, as with every other Greek philosopher, a mediator is introduced not for the purpose of representing the supreme ideal to us nor of transmitting our aspirations to it, but of guiding and facilitating our approach to it, of helping us to a perfect apprehension and realisation of its meaning. With Philo, on the contrary, the relation of the Logos to God is much the same as that of258 a Grand Vizier to an Oriental Sultan. And, from this point of view, it is very significant that he should compare it to the high-priest who lays the prayers of the people before the eternal throne, especially when we couple this with his declaration that the Logos is the God of us imperfect beings, the first God being reserved for the contemplation of those who are wise and perfect.399 It was by an analogous, though, of course, far more complicated and ingenious adjustment, that Hegel sought to overcome the agnosticism which Kant professed to have founded on a basis of irrefragable proof. With both philosophers, however, the sceptical principle was celebrating its supreme triumph at the moment of its fancied overthrow. The dogmatism of doubt could go no further than to resolve the whole chain of existence into a succession of mutually contradictory ideas.Besides Zeno, Parmenides seems to have had only one disciple of note, Melissus, the Samian statesman and general; but under various modifications and combined with other elements, the Eleatic absolute entered as a permanent factor into Greek speculation. From it were lineally descended the Sphairos of Empedocles, the eternal atoms of Leucippus, the Nous of Anaxagoras, the Megaric Good, the supreme solar idea of Plato, the self-thinking thought of Aristotle, the imperturbable tranquillity attributed to their model sage by Stoics and Epicureans alike, the sovereign indifference of the Sceptics, and finally, the Neo-platonic One. Modern philosophers have sought for their supreme ideal in power, movement, activity, life, rather than in any stationary substance; yet even among them we find Herbart partially reviving the Eleatic theory, and confronting Hegel’s fluent categories with his own inflexible monads.Before we can come to a decision on this point it will be necessary briefly to recapitulate the statements in question. Socrates is defending himself against a capital charge. He fears that a prejudice respecting him may exist in the minds of the jury, and tries to explain how it arose without any fault of his, as follows:—A certain friend of his had asked the oracle at Delphi whether there was any man wiser than Socrates? The answer was that no man was wiser. Not being conscious of possessing any wisdom, great or small, he felt considerably surprised on hearing of this declaration, and thought to convince the god of falsehood by finding out some one wiser than himself. He first went to an eminent politician, who, however, proved, on examination, to be utterly ignorant, with the further disadvantage that it was impossible to convince him of his ignorance. On applying the same test to others a precisely similar result was obtained. It was only the handicraftsmen who could give a satisfactory account of themselves, and their knowledge of one trade made them fancy that they understood everything else equally well. Thus the meaning of the oracle was shown to be that God alone is truly wise, and that of all men he is wisest who, like Socrates, perceives that human wisdom is worth little or nothing. Ever since then, Socrates has made it his business to vindicate the divine veracity by seeking out and exposing every pretender to knowledge that he can find, a line of conduct which has made him extremely unpopular in Athens, while it has also won him a great reputation for wisdom, as people supposed that the matters on which he convicted others of ignorance were perfectly clear to himself.That Virgil was acquainted with this philosophy and had accepted some of its principal conclusions is evident from a famous passage in the Sixth Aeneid,282 setting forth the theory of a universal and all-penetrating soul composed of fiery matter, whence the particular souls of men and animals are derived, by a process likened to the scattering and germination of seeds; from another equally famous passage in the Fourth Eclogue,283 describing the periodical recurrence of events in the same order as before; and also, although to a less extent, from his acceptance of the Stoic astronomy in the Georgics;284 a circumstance which, by the way, renders it most unlikely that he looked up to Lucretius as an authority in physical science.285 But even apart from this collateral evidence, one can see that the Aeneid is a Stoic poem. It is filled with the ideas of mutation and vicissitude overruled by a divinely appointed order; of the prophetic intimations by which that order is revealed; of the obedience to reason by which passion is subdued; and of the faith in divine goodness by which suffering is made easy to be borne. And there are also gleams of that universal humanity familiar to Stoicism, which read to some like an anticipation of the Christian or the modern spirit, but which really resemble them only as earlier manifestations of the same great philosophical movement. The second service of Epicurus was entirely to banish the idea of supernatural interference from the study of natural phenomena. This also was a difficult enterprise in the face of that overwhelming theological reaction begun by Socrates, continued by Plato, and carried to grotesque con115sequences by the Stoics; but, here again, there can be no question of attributing any originality to the philosopher of the Garden. That there either were no gods at all, or that if there were they never meddled with the world, was a common enough opinion in Plato’s time; and even Aristotle’s doctrine of a Prime Mover excludes the notion of creation, providence, and miracles altogether. On the other hand, the Epicurean theory of idle gods was irrational in itself, and kept the door open for a return of superstitious beliefs.Aristotle even goes so far as to eliminate the notion of sequence from causation altogether. He tells us that the causes of events are contemporary with the events themselves; those of past events being past; of present events, present; and of future events, future. ‘This thing will not be because that other thing has happened, for the middle term must be homogeneous with the extremes.’282 It is obvious that such a limitation abolishes the power of scientific prediction, which, if not the only test of knowledge, is at any rate its most valuable verification. The Stagirite has been charged with trusting too much to deductive reasoning; it now appears that, on the contrary, he had no conception of its most important function. Here, as everywhere, he follows not the synthetic method of the mathematician, but the analytic method of the naturalist. Finally, instead of combining the notions of cause and kind, he systematically confuses them. It will be remembered how his excellent division of causes into material, formal, efficient, and final, was rendered nugatory by the continued influence of Plato’s ideas. The formal cause always tended to absorb the other three; and it is by their complete assimilation that he attempts to harmonise the order of demonstration with the order of existence. For the formal cause of a phenomenon simply meant those properties which it shared with others of the same kind, and it was by virtue of those properties that it became a subject for general reasoning, which was interpreted as a methodical arrangement of concepts one within another, answering to the concentric disposition of the cosmic spheres. IV. pc加拿大28代理 This code Plato set himself to construct in his last and longest work, the Laws. Less than half of that Dialogue, however, is occupied with the details of legislation. The remaining portions deal with the familiar topics of morality, religion, science, and education. The first book propounds a very curious theory of asceticism, which has not, we believe, been taken up by any subsequent moralist. On the principle of in vino veritas Plato proposes that drunkenness should be systematically employed for the purpose of testing self-control. True temperance is not abstinence, but the power of resisting temptation; and we can best discover to what extent any man possesses that power by surprising him when off his guard. If he should be proof against seductive influences even when in his cups, we shall be doubly sure of his constancy at other times. Prof. Jowett rather maliciously suggests that a personal proclivity may have suggested this extraordinary apology for hard drinking. Were it so, we should be reminded of the successive revelations by which indulgences of another kind were permitted to Mohammed, and of the one case in which divorce was sanctioned by Auguste Comte. We should also remember that the Christian Puritanism to which Plato approached so near has always been singularly lenient to this disgraceful vice. But perhaps a somewhat higher order of considerations will help us to a better under270standing of the paradox. Plato was averse from rejecting any tendency of his age that could possibly be turned to account in his philosophy. Hence, as we have seen, the use which he makes of love, even under its most unlawful forms, in the Symposium and the Phaedrus. Now, it would appear, from our scanty sources of information, that social festivities, always very popular at Athens, had become the chief interest in life about the time when Plato was composing his Laws. According to one graceful legend, the philosopher himself breathed his last at a marriage-feast. It may, therefore, have occurred to him that the prevalent tendency could, like the amorous passions of a former generation, be utilised for moral training and made subservient to the very cause with which, at first sight, it seemed to conflict.A mortal soul: since neither manIn addition to its other great lessons, the Symposium has afforded Plato an opportunity for contrasting his own method of philosophising with pre-Socratic modes of thought. For it consists of a series of discourses in praise of love, so arranged as to typify the manner in which Greek speculation, after beginning with mythology, subsequently advanced to physical theories of phenomena, then passed from the historical to the contemporary method, asking, not whence did things come, but what are they in themselves; and finally arrived at the logical standpoint of analysis, classification, and induction. The fascination exercised by Plotinus was not only intellectual, but personal. Singularly affable, obliging, and patient, he was always ready to answer the questions of his friends, even laying aside his work in order to discuss the difficulties which they brought to him for solution. His lectures were given in Greek; and although this always remained to him a foreign language, the pronunciation and grammar of which he never completely mastered, his expressions frequently won admiration by their felicity and force; and the effect of his eloquence was still further heightened by the glowing enthusiasm which irradiated his whole countenance, naturally a very pleasing one, during the delivery of the more impressive passages.410Speculation now leaves its Asiatic cradle and travels with the Greek colonists to new homes in Italy and Sicily, where new modes of thought were fostered by a new environment. A name, round which mythical accretions have gathered so thickly that the original nucleus of fact almost defies definition, first claims our attention. Aristotle, as is well known, avoids mentioning Pythagoras, and always speaks of the Pythagoreans when he is discussing the opinions held by a certain Italian school. Their doctrine, whoever originated it, was that all things are made out of number. Brandis regards Pythagoreanism as an entirely original effort of speculation,11 standing apart from the main current of Hellenic thought, and to be studied without reference to Ionian philosophy. Zeller, with more plausibility, treats it as an outgrowth of Anaximander’s system. In that system the finite and the infinite remained opposed to one another as unreconciled moments of thought. Number, according to the Greek arithmeticians, was a synthesis of the two, and therefore superior to either. To a Pythagorean the finite and the infinite were only one among several antithetical couples, such as odd and even, light and darkness, male and female, and, above all, the one and the many whence every number after unity is formed. The tendency to search for antitheses everywhere, and to manufacture them where they do not exist, became ere long an actual disease of the Greek mind. A Thucydides could no more have dispensed with this cumbrous mechanism than a rope-dancer could get on without his balancing pole; and many a schoolboy has been sorely puzzled by the fantastic contortions which Italiote reflection imposed for a time on Athenian oratory. It has been shown how universal space and universal thought at once contain and explain each particular space and each particular concept. In like manner, the infinite substance contains and explains space and thought themselves. Contains them, yes, as attributes; but explains them, how? As two among an infinity of attributes. In other words, if we ask why there should be such an existence as space, the answer is because existence, being infinite, must necessarily include every conceivable thing. The argument is strikingly like a principle of the Epicurean philosophy, and may well have been suggested by it. According to Lucretius, the appearance of design in our world need not be attributed to creative intelligence, because infinite atoms moving in infinite manners through infinite time, must at length arrive, after a comprehensive series of experiments, at the present frame of things;562 and the same principle is invoked on a smaller scale to account for the origin of organised beings, of memory, and of civil society.563 In both systems, infinite space is the root-conception; but what Lucretius had legitimately used to explain becoming, Spinoza illegitimately applies to the elucidation of being. At one stroke all empirical knowledge is placed on an à priori foundation. By assuming unlimited credit at the bank of the universe we entitle ourselves to draw a cheque for any particular amount. Thus the idea of infinite attributes is no mere collateral speculation, but forms an407 essential element of Spinozism. The known varieties of existence are, so to speak, surrounded, supported, and fixed in their places by the endless multitude of the unknown. And this conception of being as absolutely infinite, is another proof of Spinoza’s Platonic tendencies, for it involves the realisation of an abstract idea, that is to say, of Being, which the philosopher treats as something more comprehensive than the facts of consciousness whence it is derived.At the same time Lucretius is resolved that no false analogy shall obscure the distinction between life and the conditions of life. It is for attempting, as he supposes, to efface this distinction that he so sharply criticises the earlier Greek thinkers. He scoffs at Heracleitus for imagining that all forms of existence can be deduced from the single element of fire. The idea of evolution and transformation seems, under some of its aspects, utterly alien to our poet. His intimacy with the world of living forms had accustomed him to view Nature as a vast assemblage of fixed types which might be broken up and reconstructed, but which by no possibility could pass into one another. Yet this rigid retention of characteristic differences in form permits a certain play and variety of movement, an individual spontaneity for which no law can be prescribed. The foedera Naturai, as Prof. Sellar aptly observes, are opposed to the foedera fati.206 And109 this is just what might be expected from a philosophy based on the contemplation of life. For, while there is no capriciousness at all about the structure of animals, there is apparently a great deal of capriciousness about their actions. On the other hand, the Stoics, who derived their physics in great part from Heracleitus, came nearer than Lucretius to the standpoint of modern science. With them, as with the most advanced thinkers now, it is the foedera Naturai—the uniformities of co-existence—which are liable to exception and modification, while the foedera fati—the laws of causation—are necessary and absolute.All existence, according to Plotinus, proceeds from the One, which he also calls God. But God does not create the world by a conscious exercise of power; for, as we have seen, every form of consciousness is excluded from his definition.319 Neither does it proceed from him by emanation, for this would imply a diminution of his substance.469 It is produced by an overflow of his infinite power.470 Our philosopher tries to explain and defend this rather unintelligible mode of derivation by the analogy of physical substances and their actions. Light is constantly coming from the sun without any loss to the luminary itself.471 And all things are, in like manner, constantly communicating their proper virtue to others while remaining unaltered themselves. Here we have a good example of the close connexion between science and abstract speculation. People often talk as if metaphysics was something beyond the reach of verification. But some metaphysical theories admit, at any rate, of disproof, in so far as they are founded on false physical theories. Had Plotinus known that neither the sun nor anything else in Nature can produce force out of nothing, he would, very probably, have hesitated to credit the One with such a power.The idea of virtue as a hedonistic calculus, abandoned by its first originator, and apparently neglected by his immediate successors, was taken up by Epicurus; for that the latter borrowed it from Plato seems to be proved by the exact62 resemblance of their language;125 and M. Guyau is quite mistaken when he represents his hero as the founder of utilitarian morality.126 It was not enough, however, to appropriate the cast-off ideas of Plato; it was necessary to meet the arguments by which Plato had been led to think that pleasure was not the supreme good, and to doubt whether it was, as such, a good at all. The most natural course would have been to begin by exhibiting the hedonistic ideal in a more favourable light. Sensual gratifications, from their remarkable intensity, had long been the accepted types of pleasurable feeling, and from their animal character, as well as from other obvious reasons, had frequently been used to excite a prejudice against it. On the other hand, Plato himself, and Aristotle still more, had brought into prominence the superiority, simply as pleasures, of those intellectual activities which they considered to be, even apart from all pleasure, the highest good. But Epicurus refused to avail himself of this opportunity for effecting a compromise with the opposite school, boldly declaring that he for his part could not conceive any pleasures apart from those received through the five senses, among which he, characteristically enough, included aesthetic enjoyments. The obvious significance of his words has been explained away, and they have been asserted to contain only the very harmless proposition that our animal nature is the basis, the condition, of our spiritual nature.127 But, if this were the true explanation, it would be possible to point out what other pleasures were recognised by Epicurus. These, if they existed at all, must have belonged to the mind as such. Now, we have it on Cicero’s authority that, while admitting the existence of mental feelings, both pleasurable and painful, he reduced them to an extension and reflection of bodily feelings, mental happiness properly consisting in the assurance of63 prolonged and painless sensual gratification. This is something very different from saying that the highest spiritual enjoyments are conditioned by the healthy activity of the bodily organs, or that they cannot be appreciated if the animal appetites are starved. It amounts to saying that there are no specific and positive pleasures apart from the five senses as exercised either in reality or in imagination.128 And even without the evidence of Cicero, we can see that some such conclusion necessarily followed from the principles elsewhere laid down by Epicurus. To a Greek, the mental pleasures, par excellence, were those derived from friendship and from intellectual activity. But our philosopher, while warmly panegyrising friendship, recommends it not for the direct pleasure which it affords, but for the pain and danger which it prevents;129 while his restriction of scientific studies to the office of dispelling superstitious fears seems meant for a direct protest against Aristotle’s opinion, that the highest pleasure is derived from those studies. Equally significant is his outspoken contempt for literary culture.130 In this respect, he offers a marked contrast to Aristippus, who, when asked by some one what good his son would get by education, answered, ‘This much, at least, that when he is at the play he will not sit like a stone upon a stone,’131 the customary attitude, it would seem, of an ordinary Athenian auditor.III. It is remarkable that Aristotle, after repeatedly speaking of induction as an ascent from particulars to generals, when he comes to trace the process by which we arrive at the most general notions of any, does not admit the possibility of such a movement in one direction only. The universal and the individual are, according to him, combined in our most elementary sense-impressions, and the business of scientific393 experience is to separate them. Starting from a middle point, we work up to indivisible predicates on the one hand and down to indivisible subjects on the other, the final apprehension of both extremes being the office, not of science, but of Nous. This theory is equally true and acute. The perception of individual facts is just as difficult and just as slowly acquired as the conception of ultimate abstractions. Moreover, the two processes are carried on pari passu, each being only made possible by and through the other. No true notion can be framed without a firm grasp of the particulars from which it is abstracted; no individual object can be studied without analysing it into a group of common predicates, the idiosyncrasy of which—that is, their special combination—differentiates it from every other object. What, however, we wish to remark is the illustration incidentally afforded by this striking aper?u of Aristotle’s analytical method, which is also the essentially Greek method of thought. We saw that, for our philosopher, syllogism was not the subsumption of a particular case under a general law, but the interpolation of a mean between two extremes; we now see that his induction is not the finding of a law for the particular phenomenon, but its analysis into two elements—one universal and the other individual—a solution of the mean into the extremes. And the distinctive originality of his whole system was to fix two such extremes for the universe—a self-thinking thought in absolute self-identity at one end of the scale, and an absolutely indeterminate matter at the other; by combining which in various proportions he then re-constructed the whole intermediate phenomenal reality. In studying each particular class of facts, he follows the same method. The genus is marked by some characteristic attribute which one species—the prerogative species, so to speak—exhibits in its greatest purity, while the others form a graduated scale by variously combining this attribute with its opposite or privation. Hence his theory, since revived by Goethe, that394 the colours are so many different mixtures of light and darkness.Absolute being is next distinguished from truth, which, we are told, has no objective existence237—a remarkable declaration, which throws much light on other parts of the Aristotelian system, and to which we shall subsequently return.238In the face of such facts, to say, as Mr. Froude does, that Epicureanism was ‘the creed of the men of science’ in the time of Julius Caesar111—an assertion directly contradicted by Lange112—is perhaps only of a piece with Mr. Froude’s usual inaccuracy when writing about ancient history; but such declarations as that of Mr. Frederic Pollock, that the Epicurean system56 ‘was a genuine attempt at a scientific explanation of the world; and was in its day the solitary protest against the contempt of physics which prevailed in the other post-Aristotelian schools;’113 of Prof. Trezza, that the Epicurean school ‘summed up in itself the most scientific elements of Greek antiquity;’114 of Dr. Woltjer, that ‘with respect to the laws and principles of science, the Epicureans came nearest of all the ancients to the science of our own time;’115 and finally, of M. Ernest Renan, that Epicureanism was ‘the great scientific school of antiquity,’116 are absolutely amazing. The eminent French critic just quoted has elsewhere observed, with perfect justice, that the scientific spirit is the negation of the supernatural; and perhaps he argues that the negation of the supernatural must, reciprocally, be the scientific spirit. But this is only true when such a negation is arrived at inductively, after a disinterested survey of the facts. Epicurus started with the denial of supernatural interference as a practical postulate, and then hunted about for whatever explanations of natural phenomena would suit his foregone conclusion. Moreover, an enquirer really animated by the scientific spirit studies the facts for their own sake; he studies them as they actually are, not resting content with alternative explanations; and he studies them to the fullest extent of which his powers are capable. Epicurus, on the contrary, declares that physics would not be worth attending to if the mind could be set free from religious terrors in any other manner;117 he will not let himself be tied down to any one theory if there are others equally inconsistent with divine agency to be had;118 and when his demands in this respect are satisfied, that is, when the appearances vulgarly ascribed to supernatural causation have been provided with natural causes, he leaves off.This was the creed professed by ‘the great scientific school of antiquity,’ and this was its way of protesting ‘against the contempt of physics which prevailed’ among the Stoics!223 pc加拿大28代理 The De Rerum Natura is the greatest of Roman poems, because it is just the one work where the abstract genius of Rome met with a subject combining an abstract form with the interest and inspiration of concrete reality; where negation works with a greater power than assertion; where the satire is directed against follies more wide-spread and enduring than any others; where the teaching in some most essential points can never be superseded; and where dependence on a Greek model left the poet free to contribute from his own imagination those elements to which the poetic value of his work is entirely due. By a curious coincidence, the great poet of mediaeval Italy attained success by the employment of a somewhat similar method. Dante represented, it is true, in their victorious combination, three influences against which Lucretius waged an unrelenting warfare—religion, the idealising love of woman, and the spiritualistic philosophy of Greece. Nevertheless, they resemble each other in this important particular, that both have taken an114 abstract theory of the world as the mould into which the burning metal of their imaginative conceptions is poured. Dante, however, had a power of individual presentation which Lucretius either lacked or had no opportunity of exercising; and therefore he approaches nearer to that supreme creativeness which only two races, the Greek and the English, have hitherto displayed on a very extended scale.Antisthenes and his school, of which Diogenes is the most popular and characteristic type, were afterwards known as Cynics; but the name is never mentioned by Plato and Aristotle, nor do they allude to the scurrility and systematic indecency afterwards associated with it. The anecdotes relating to this unsavoury subject should be received with extreme suspicion. There has always been a tendency to believe that philosophers carry out in practice what are vulgarly believed to be the logical consequences of their theories. Thus it is related of Pyrrho the Sceptic that when6 out walking he never turned aside to avoid any obstacle or danger, and was only saved from destruction by the vigilance of his friends.9 This is of course a silly fable; and we have Aristotle’s word for it that the Sceptics took as good care of their lives as other people.10 In like manner we may conjecture that the Cynics, advocating as they did a return to Nature and defiance of prejudice, were falsely credited with what was falsely supposed to be the practical exemplification of their precepts. It is at any rate remarkable that Epictêtus, a man not disposed to undervalue the obligations of decorum, constantly refers to Diogenes as a kind of philosophical saint, and that he describes the ideal Cynic in words which would apply without alteration to the character of a Christian apostle.11Still more impressive, if we consider the writings of Plotinus on their personal side, and as a revelation of their author’s mind, is the high and sustained purity, the absolute detachment and disinterestedness by which they are characterised throughout. No trace of angry passion, no dallying with images of evil, interferes to mar their exalted spirituality from first to last. While the western world was passing through a period of horror and degradation such as had never been known before, the philosopher took refuge in an ideal sphere, and looked down on it all with no more disturbance to his serenity than if he had been the spectator of a mimic performance on the stage.504 This, indeed, is one of340 the reasons why the Enneads are so much less interesting, from a literary point of view, than the works of the Roman Stoics. It is not only that we fail to find in them any allusions even of the faintest kind to contemporary events or to contemporary life and manners, such as abound in Seneca and Epictêtus, but there is not the slightest reference to the existence of such a thing as the Roman empire at all. One or two political illustrations occur, but they are drawn from old Greek city life, and were probably suggested by Plato or Aristotle.505 But this tremendous blank is so perfectly in keeping with the whole spirit of Neo-Platonism as to heighten instead of lowering its aesthetic effect. In studying the philosophy of the preceding centuries, to whatever school it may belong, we have the image of death always before our eyes; and to fortify us against its terrors, we are continually called upon to remember the vanity of life. This is the protest of thought against the world, just as in Lucian and Sextus we hear the protest of the world against thought. At last the whole bitter strife comes to an end, the vision of sense passes away, Plotinus seems to have begun his career as a public teacher soon after taking up his residence in Rome. His lectures at first assumed the form of conversations with his private friends. Apparently by way of reviving the traditions of Socrates and Plato, he encouraged them to take an active part in the discussion: but either he did not possess the authority of his great exemplars, or the rules of Greek dialogue were not very strictly observed in Rome; for we learn from the report of an eye-witness that interruptions were far too frequent, and that a vast amount of nonsense was talked.408 Afterwards a more regular system of lecturing was established, and papers were read aloud by those who had any observations to offer, as in our own philosophical societies.For equity is law, law equity;Next to its bearing on the question of immortality, the Epicurean psychology is most interesting as a contribution to the theory of cognition. Epicurus holds that all our knowledge is derived from experience, and all our experience, directly or indirectly, from the presentations of sense. So far he says no more than would be admitted by the Stoics, by Aristotle, and indeed by every Greek philosopher except Plato. There is, therefore, no necessary connexion between his views in this respect and his theory of ethics, since others had combined the same views with a very different standard of action. It is in discussing the vexed question of what constitutes the ultimate criterion of truth that he shows to most disadvantage in comparison with the more intellectual96 schools. He seems to have considered that sensation supplies not only the matter but the form of knowledge; or rather, he seems to have missed the distinction between matter and form altogether. What the senses tell us, he says, is always true, although we may draw erroneous inferences from their statements.184 But this only amounts to the identical proposition that we feel what we feel; for it cannot be pretended that the order of our sensations invariably corresponds to the actual order of things in themselves. Even confining ourselves to individual sensations, or single groups of sensations, there are some that do not always correspond to the same objective reality, and others that do not correspond to any reality at all; while, conversely, the same object produces a multitude of different sensations according to the subjective conditions under which it affects us. To escape from this difficulty, Epicurus has recourse to a singularly crude theory of perception, borrowed from Empedocles and the older atomists. What we are conscious of is, in each instance, not the object itself, but an image composed of fine atoms thrown off from the surfaces of bodies and brought into contact with the organs of sense. Our perception corresponds accurately to an external image, but the image itself is often very unlike the object whence it originally proceeded. Sometimes it suffers a considerable change in travelling through the atmosphere. For instance, when a square tower, seen at a great distance, produces the impression of roundness, this is because the sharp angles of its image have been rubbed off on the way to our eyes. Sometimes the image continues to wander about after its original has ceased to exist, and that is why the dead seem to revisit us in our dreams. And sometimes the images of different objects coalesce as they are floating about, thus producing the appearance of impossible monsters, such as centaurs and chimaeras.185Her despair is but the inverted image of Plato’s hope, the return to a purer state of being where knowledge will no longer be obscured by passing through the perturbing medium of sight and touch. Again, modern apologists for the injustice and misery of the present system144 argue that its inequalities will be redressed in a future state. Plato conversely regarded the sufferings of good men as a retribution for former sin, or as the result of a forgotten choice. The authority of Pindar and of ancient tradition generally may have influenced his belief, but it had a deeper ground in the logic of a spiritualistic philosophy. The dualism of soul and body is only one form of his fundamental antithesis between the changeless essence and the transitory manifestations of existence. A pantheism like Spinoza’s was the natural outcome of such a system; but his practical genius or his ardent imagination kept Plato from carrying it so far. Nor in the interests of progress was the result to be regretted; for theology had to pass through one more phase before the term of its beneficent activity could be reached. Ethical conceptions gained a new241 significance in the blended light of mythology and metaphysics; those who made it their trade to pervert justice at its fountain-head might still tremble before the terrors of a supernatural tribunal; or if Plato could not regenerate the life of his own people he could foretell what was to be the common faith of Europe in another thousand years; and memory, if not hope, is the richer for those magnificent visions where he has projected the eternal conflict between good and evil into the silence and darkness by which our lives are shut in on every side.359