Presocratic Thought An analysis of Presocratic thought presents some difficulties. Even these purportedly verbatim words often come to us in quotation from other sources, so it is difficult, if not impossible, to attribute with certainty a definite position to any one thinker. Presocratic thought marks a decisive turn away from mythological accounts towards rational explanations of the cosmos. Indeed, some Presocratics openly criticize and ridicule traditional Greek mythology, while others simply explain the world and its causes in material terms.
Philo was influenced by Platonic and Stoic writings and probably also by certain postbiblical Jewish beliefs and speculations. His father had apparently played a prominent role in Palestine before moving to Alexandria. Philo was born between 15 and 10 bce. The community of Alexandria, to judge from the language of the Jewish papyri and inscriptions, had for nearly three centuries been almost exclusively Greek-speaking and indeed regarded the Septuagint the 3rd-century-bce translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek as divinely inspired.
These men were often influenced by the Greek culture in which they lived and wrote apologies for Judaism. The Alexandrian Jews were eager to enroll their children of secondary school age in Greek gymnasiumsinstitutions with religious associations dedicated to the liberal arts and athletics ; in them, Jews were certainly called upon to make compromises with their traditions.
It may be assumed that Philo was a product of such an education: Like the cultured Greeks of his day, Philo often attended the theatre, though it had distinctly religious connotationsand he noted the different effects of the same music on various members of the audience and the enthusiasm of the audience for a tragedy of Euripides.
He was a keen observer of boxing contests and attended chariot races as well. He also mentions the frequency with which he attended costly suppers with their lavish entertainment.
Philo says nothing of his own Jewish education. The only mention of Jewish education in his work indicates how relatively weak it must have been, because he speaks only of Jewish schools that met on the Sabbath for lectures on ethics. That he was far from the Palestinian Hellenizers and that he regarded himself as an observant Jew is clear, however, from his statement that one should not omit the observance of any of the Jewish customs that have been divinely ordained.
Philo is critical both of those who took the Bible too literally and thus encountered theological difficulties, particularly anthropomorphisms i. Philo says nothing of his own religious practices, except that he made a festival pilgrimage to Jerusalem, though he nowhere indicates whether he made more than one such visit.
In the eyes of the Palestinian rabbis the Alexandrian Jews were particularly known for their cleverness in posing puzzles and for their sharp replies. On the whole, Philo is in accord with the prevailing Palestinian point of view; nonetheless he differs from it in numerous details and is often dependent upon Greek and Roman law.
That Philo experienced some sort of identity crisis is indicated by a passage in his On the Special Laws. In this work, he describes his longing to escape from worldly cares to the contemplative life, his joy at having succeeded in doing so perhaps with the Egyptian Jewish ascetic sect of the Therapeutae described in his treatise On the Contemplative Lifeand his renewed pain at being forced once again to participate in civic turmoil.
Philo appears to have been dissatisfied with his life in the bustling metropolis of Alexandria: He praises the Essenes —a Jewish sect who lived in monastic communities in the Dead Sea area—for avoiding large cities because of the iniquities that had become inveterate among city dwellers, for living an agricultural life, and for disdaining wealth.
Philo was prepared to answer the charge of disloyalty levelled against the Jews by the notorious anti-Semite Apion, a Greek grammarian, when the Emperor cut him short.
Thereupon Philo told his fellow delegates not to be discouraged because God would punish Caligula, who, shortly thereafter, was indeed assassinated. Scriptural essays and homilies based on specific verses or topics of the Pentateuch the first five books of the Bibleespecially Genesis.
The most important of the 25 extant treatises in this group are Allegories of the Laws, commentary on Genesis, and On the Special Laws, an exposition of the laws in the Pentateuch. General philosophical and religious essays.
Essays on contemporary subjects. A number of works ascribed to Philo are almost certainly spurious. Most important of these is Biblical Antiquities, an imaginative reconstruction of Jewish history from Adam to the death of Saul, the first king of Israel.The Greek philosopher and logician (one who studies logic or reason) Socrates was an important influence on Plato (– B.C.E.) and had a major effect on ancient philosophy.
Socrates was the son of Sophroniscus, an Athenian stone mason and sculptor, and Phaenarete, a midwife. Because he wasn't from a noble family, he probably received a basic Greek education and.
Xenophon of Athens (/ ˈ z ɛ n ə f ən, -ˌ f ɒ n /; Greek: Ξενοφῶν, Ancient Greek: [ksenopʰɔ̂ːn], Xenophōn; c. – BC) was an ancient Greek philosopher, historian, soldier, mercenary, and student of Socrates.
As a historian, Xenophon is known for recording the history of his time, the late-5th and early-4th centuries BC, in such works as the Hellenica, which covered. - Socrates was a classical Greek philosopher that was born in Athens, Greece around / BC.
He served in the Athenian army and fought in many battles.
When Socrates retired from fighting in the army, he began focusing on expressing his beliefs. A short biography of Socrates Socrates was the first of the three great Athenian philosophers (the other two are Plato and Aristotle).
He was born in Athens in BC, so he lived through the time of Pericles and the Athenian Empire. The Greek philosopher and logician (one who studies logic or reason) Socrates was an important influence on Plato (– B.C.E.) and had a major effect on ancient philosophy.
Early life Socrates was the son of Sophroniscus, an Athenian stone mason and sculptor.