Cookies Policy
X

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

"Creeping Spatiality": The Location of Nous in Plotinus' Universe

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites

image of Phronesis

There is a well-known tension in Plotinus' thought regarding the location of the intelligible region. He appears to make three mutually incompatible claims about it: (1) it is everywhere; (2) it is nowhere; and (3) it borders on the heavens, where the third claim is associated with Plotinus' affection for cosmic religion. Traditionally, although scholars have found a reasonable way to make sense of the compatibility of the first two claims, they have sought to relieve the tension generated by (3) by both downplaying the importance of cosmic religion to Plotinus and reinterpreting his spatial language metaphorically. In this paper I argue that both of these maneuvers are unsatisfactory. Rather, it is possible to reconcile Plotinus' metaphysics with the world-view of cosmic religion (CR world-view), i.e., to retain the spatial sense of Plotinus' language without making his metaphysics incoherent.

In the first part of this paper, I show that cosmic religion is not just an awkward appendage to Plotinus' metaphysics. After explaining what cosmic religion involves, I argue that the CR world-view is in fact central to his natural philosophy. Then, I turn to the problem of the compatibility between cosmic religion and Plotinus' thought. By carefully considering how Aristotle's Prime Mover is present to his universe, I show how we can make claims (2) and (3) compatible for Plotinus. Then, I argue that Plotinus' own account of the omnipresence of soul and its powers' actualizations in particular locations provides a parallel to the problem of the compatibility between (1) and (3), and further that these two accounts can be combined to resolve completely the tension between the CR world-view and Plotinus' metaphysics. In the final section, I discuss the implications this has for our understanding of the soul's ascent and descent.

Loading

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/156852805774481414
Loading

Data & Media loading...

http://brill.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1163/156852805774481414
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/156852805774481414
2005-11-01
2016-10-01

Sign-in

Can't access your account?
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation