Browsing by Subject "ancient philosophy"

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Now showing items 1-13 of 13
  • Backman, Jussi (2007)
    The paper studies a transcript of notes from Heidegger's 1930–31 seminar on Plato’s Parmenides. It shows that in spite of his much-criticized habit of dismissing Plato as the progenitor of “idealist” metaphysics, Heidegger was quite aware of the radical potential of Plato's later dialogues. Through a temporal account of the notion of oneness (to hen), the Parmenides attempts to reconcile the plurality of beings with the unity of being. In Heidegger’s reading, the dialogue culminates in the notion of the “instant” (to exaiphnes, Augenblick) in which the temporal plurality of presence and nonpresence converges into a unified disclosure.
  • Ahonen, Marke Pauliina (2019)
    This article explores how the ancient philosophers from Plato to late antiquity understood mental illness. It outlines when, how and in what kind of contexts the phenomenon of mental illness was recognized in the ancient philosophical texts, how mental illness was understood in terms of the body-mind interaction, and how mental disorders of the medical kind were distinguished from non-medical psychic disturbances. It establishes that, while the philosophers mostly understood mental illness along the lines of ancient medical thinking, their ideas, for example on the nature and location of the soul, informed their theories of mental illness.
  • Backman, Jussi (2005)
    The paper discusses Heidegger’s early notion of the “movedness of life” (Lebensbewegtheit) and its intimate connection with Aristotle’s concept of movement (kinesis). Heidegger’s aim in the period of Being and Time was to “overcome” the Greek ideal of being as ousia – constant and complete presence and availability – by showing that the background for all meaningful presence is Dasein, the ecstatically temporal context of human being. Life as the event of finitude is characterized by an essential lack and incompleteness, and the living present therefore gains meaning only in relation to a horizon of un-presence and un-availability. Whereas the “theological” culmination of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics finds the supreme fulfillment of human life in the semi-divine self-immanence and self-sufficiency of the bios theoretikos, a radical Heideggerian interpretation of kinesis may permit us to find in Aristotle the fundamental structures of mortal living as self-transcendent movement.
  • Huttunen, Niko (Brill, 2020)
    In Early Christians Adapting to the Roman Empire: Mutual Recognition Niko Huttunen challenges the interpretation of early Christian texts as anti-imperial documents. He presents examples of the positive relationship between early Christians and the Roman society. With the concept of “recognition” Huttunen describes a situation in which the parties can come to terms with each other without full agreement. Huttunen provides examples of non-Christian philosophers recognizing early Christians. He claims that recognition was a response to Christians who presented themselves as philosophers. Huttunen reads Romans 13 as a part of the ancient tradition of the law of the stronger. His pioneering study on early Christian soldiers uncovers the practical dimension of recognizing the empire.
  • Airaksinen, Timo (2021)
    I present a new interpretation of Heraclitus' ideas of stepping into a river twice etc: it refers to death and resurrection. I provide a context for this idea.
  • Backman, Jussi (2012)
    Derrida's deconstructive strategy of reading texts can be understood as a way of highlighting the irreducible plurality of discursive meaning that undermines the traditional Western “logocentric“ desire for an absolute point of reference. While his notion of logocentrism was modeled on Heidegger's articulation of the traditional ontotheological framework of Aristotelian metaphysics, Derrida detects a logocentric remnant in Heidegger's own interpretation of gathering (Versammlung) as the basic movement of λόγος, discursiveness. However, I suggest that Derrida here touches upon a certain limit of deconstruction. As Derrida himself points out, the “decentering“ effect of deconstruction does not simply abolish the unifying and focalizing function of discourse. Insofar as deconstruction involves reading and interpreting, it cannot completely evade narrative focalization. Rather, both Heidegger and Derrida can be understood as addressing the radical contextuality of all discursive centers and focal points as well as the consequent impossibility of an ultimate and definitive metanarrative.
  • Backman, Jussi (Eurooppalaisen filosofian seura, 2006)
    23°45: niin & näin -lehden kirjasarja
  • Backman, Jussi (Eurooppalaisen filosofian seura, 2005)
    23°45 : Niin & näin -lehden filosofinen julkaisusarja
    Mitä oleva on? Omaisuus ja elämä pureutuu tähän filosofian peruskysymykseen seuraten kahta länsimaisen filosofian jättiläistä, Aristotelestä ja Heideggeria. Siinä missä Aristoteles kysyy olevaa substantiivina ja tilana, etsii Heidegger olemisen mieltä verbinä ja tapahtumana. Nämä kaksi merkitystä löytyvät myös suomen olla-verbistä: "omistaa jotakin" ja "olla olemassa, elossa". Omaisuus ja elämä antavat peruslähtökohdat olevan tulkitsemiselle. Kirja vie lukijansa filosofian kreikkalaisille juurille ja sen uusimpiin, Heideggerin avaamiin mahdollisuuksiin.
  • Backman, Jussi (Yliopistopaino, 2004)
  • Leinonen, Mika Tapani (Helsingin yliopisto, 2021)
    The topic of this work is Aristotle’s doctrine of the intellect (ὁ νοῦς) as the noetic faculty of the soul in the psychology of the De anima. The work is based on scholarly exegesis of Aristotle’s text and philosophical analysis of his arguments. This work also reviews some of the most prominent interpretations of the topic up to the present. While most research on the topic seems to have focused primarily on ontological issues, the aim of this work is to assess the question of what kind of an activity Aristotle ascribes to the intellect as a faculty of the soul. To this end, I separate between two forms of rationality in Aristotle’s psychology, noetic and discursive rationalities. Close reading of Aristotle’s considerations of rational capabilities in the De anima shows that he separates between these, and furthermore that the characteristic activity of the intellect (νοεῖν) is best understood in terms of the former. I also discuss the method of defining capacities in Aristotle’s faculty psychology and give reasons for thinking that the doctrine of the intellect stands for a higher, separate reality in Aristotle’s psychology and is not contained in the common account of the soul. In approaching the topic of the intellect, I discuss the way that Aristotle aims to overcome the shortcoming of Anaxagoras’ theory with his doctrine of the potential (δύναμις) intellect. The central account of the intellect’s noetic activity in the De anima is given in terms of receptivity (δεκτικός) and is borne out of an analogy with sense perception. The analogy implies an explanation of the intellect’s activity with the model of efficient cause. But Aristotle’s considerations of the nature of the intellect also show him detaching it from the faculty of sense due its difference in scope, discussed in terms of limitlessness or neutrality of the intellect. In this work I argue that the characterizations that Aristotle gives of the intellect’s characteristic activity prevents from reading it as thinking in the broad sense of the term. However, it is possible to take Aristotle’s focus to be with thinking in his account of the intellect. In this work my aim is to give reasons for why this reading is unsuccessful and to provide an alternative, which argues that the cognitive activity of the intellect in the De anima is rather best understood by associating it with theoretical knowledge. In my reading the activity of the intellect does not stand for ordinary thought but for the most successful form of rationality available to humans, which is a veridical and direct kind of cognition that is of starting points of explanatory sciences. The activity of the intellect is primarily for Aristotle reception of form (εἶδος), as is shown by his characterization ‘place of forms’. In conformity with the traditional reading of Alexander of Aphrodisias, the noetic faculty of the soul is in my reading never the actual locus of forms but only the dispositional capacify for participating in the life of active understanding.