An Essay On Anaxagoras

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In part, this belief was fueled by the Parmenidean-inspired conviction that X cannot possibly come from not X.

This principle, commonly referred to as the "like-like" principle, is in part what led Empedocles to his theory of the four elements, but it is put to even better use by Anaxagoras.

He was a friend of Pericles and his ideas are reflected in the works of Sophocles and Aristophanes.

C.) was reportedly the first Presocratic philosopher to settle in Athens.

Like the four elements, the homeomeric substances possess some of the crucial properties of the Parmenidean Real: They cannot be generated or destroyed, nor can they change qualitatively.

Also like the four elements, the homeomeric substances can be viewed as Anaxogoras's solution to the problem of physis, both in the sense of the original material out of which everything arose and in the sense of the unifiers within nature, of which everything else is a variation.Of that book a few fragments survive, mostly in the pages of the late antique Aristotelian commentator Simplicius.Otherwise we rely on testimonia: reports and summaries varying in trustworthiness by Plato, Aristotle, Theophrastus (who tells us most of what we know about Anaxagoras's theory of sense perception), and a variety of other Greek and Latin authors, once at least in Arabic translation.In a human body, the part is different from the whole.When it comes to bone, flesh, and marrow, on the other hand, whole and part are the same.Anaxagoras follows this model, but with some modifications.In order to better account for the full diversity of objects that populate our world, he posits an infinite number of Parmenidean Reals, called the homeomeric substances.So, for instance, when a baby is born bald and then grows hair, that hair is not coming into being from not-being, rather what is happening is that formerly tiny, imperceptible hair parts mixed in with the scalp, are growing larger., intellect, was to have a key role in the explanation of things -- and of his subsequent disappointment when it turned out to be just another exposition of material causation untinged by teleology.Though the four elements cover some of the most basic natural kinds in the observable world, they clearly do not exhaust all worldly existents.There are many qualities that seem to have nothing to do with these four elements.


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