Chapter VI - Stolen Legacy

Stolen Legacy,
by George G. M. James
New York: Philosophical Library [1954]

Greek Philospohy is Stolen Egyptian Philosophy

The Memphite Theology is the Basis of all Important Doctrines of Greek Philosophy





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(III) the doctrine of the Ideal State whose attributes are compared with the attributes of the soul and justice. Following this order, they are as follows:

(I) The Theory of Ideas

A. Definition of Ideas. This may be expressed in the following syllogism:

The idea (retaining its unity, unchangeableness and perfection) is the element of reality in a thing.

The idea is the concept by which a thing is known. Therefore the concept by which a thing is known is the element of reality in a thing (To on).

It follows also, that since the concept or idea of a thing is real, then the concrete thing itself is unreal.

(Timaeus 51) (Phaedrus 247).

B. The application of the theory of Ideas to natural Phenomena.

In view of the definition of the Idea, three doctrines have resulted:--

(a) The doctrine of the real and unreal.

The things which we see around us are the phenomena of nature, they belong to the earthly realm, they are only copies (Eidola) of their prototypes (paradeigmata), the Ideas and noumena, which dwell in the heavenly realm. The Ideas are real and perfect, but the phenomena are unreal and imperfect; and it is the function of philosophy to enable the mind to rise above the contemplation of the visible copies of Ideas, and advance to a knowledge of the Ideas themselves. (The Phaedrus 250).

There is however, something common between them, because the phenomena partake of the Idea (metechei). This participation is an imitation (mimesis), but it is so imperfect that natural phenomena fall far short of Ideas.

(Parmenides 132 D) (Aristotle's Metaphysics I, 6; 987b, 9).




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