Divine practical thought in Plotinus

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Abstract

Plotinus follows the Timaeus and the Platonist tradition before him in postulating the existence of a World Soul whose function it is to care for the sensible world as a whole. It is argued that, since the sensible world is providentially arranged, the World Soul’s care presupposes a sort of practical thinking that is as timeless as intellectual contemplation. To explain why this thinking is practical, the paper discusses Plotinus’ view on Aristotle’s distinction between praxis and poiêsis. To explain why it is time-less, it studies Plotinus’ view on Aristotle’s distinction between complete and incomplete actuality. The focus is on Enn. IV 4, 9-12.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-78
JournalDocumenti e studi sulla tradizione filosofica medievale International Journal on the Philosophical Tradition from Late Antiquity to the Late Middle Ages
Volume26
Early online date31 Dec 2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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