Plotinus on the Making of Matter Part I: The Identity of Darkness

Abstract
Does the matter of the sensible world, for Plotinus as for Plato and Aristotle, exist without a cause of its existence? Long divided on the answer to that question, scholarly opinion now veers in favour of a derivation of matter from principles prior to matter, with disagreement limited to the details of the theory. What exactly is implied by the various passages of the Enneads where Plotinus writes of soul or physis in relation to `darkness' and `non-being', matter and form? In the pages that follow, I argue that the soul's `making' of a `non-being' that by implication is matter, in Enn. III 9 [13] 3, is logically antecedent to the `making' of `visible form' ascribed to physis in Enn. III 8 [30] 2. A detailed study of the context and the syntax of the latter passage shows that, contrary to an interpretation put forward recently in this Journal, the two `makings' cannot be the same
Keywords Gnostics   matter   ‘part soul’   darkness   Proclus   nature   Plotinus   alogos   non-being   ‘trace-soul’   ‘visible form’   soul   logos   eschatology   contemplation
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 11,085
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Similar books and articles
Denis OBrien (2012). Plotinus on the Making of Matter Part III: The Essential Background. International Journal of the Platonic Tradition 6 (1):27-80.
Gary M. Gurtler (1998). Plotinus (Review). Journal of the History of Philosophy 36 (1):128-130.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2011-04-20

Total downloads

6 ( #204,508 of 1,101,585 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #292,059 of 1,101,585 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.