The influence of Plotinus on Marsilio Ficino's doctrine of the hierarchy of being [electronic resource]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Marsilio Ficino provides the ground to consider Renaissance Platonism as a distinctive movement within the vast context of Renaissance philosophy. Ficino's Platonism includes traces of earlier humanistic thought and ideas from Neoplatonic philosophers such as Plotinus, Proclus, and Dionysius the Areopagite. Ficino was able to rebuild a traditional philosophy that, from the ancient Greeks to Plotinus, had established the harmony between paganism and Christianity. Neoplatonism, characterized by complex metaphysical, ethical, and psychological canons, provided the grounds for Ficino's cosmological challenge to merge the cyclical aspect of the universe with the religious notion of the soul, in order to secure its cosmic position. Ficino adopted Plotinus hierarchy of being as a dominant component of his own thought. His formulations on the three hypostases and the movements of the soul allow him to develop his own hierarchy of the universe, in which soul anchors the metaphysics of the structure and reaffirms its ontological nature as immortal
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