By Barrie Pitt (Editor)
Journal of the army historical past of WWII.
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Extra info for History of the Second World War, Part 5: The Panzers Break Through at Sedan. Invasion of Holland and Belgium
The concluding papers of section 1 of vol. 1 concern some of the fascinating developments in later Neoplatonism: in Iamblichus, Syrianus, Damascius, and Simplicius, with the presence of Proclus, of course, everywhere. John Finamore reconstructs from fragments of Iamblichus in Damascius and Proclus Iamblichus’s unique interpretation of the Parmenides’ third hypothesis as concerning not souls, but superior classes of beings (angels, daemons, and heroes). He interprets this as resulting from Iamblichus’s interpretation of elements in the Phaedrus myth and of Diotima-Socrates’ representation of daemons as two-way messengers between heaven and earth in the Symposium; and he argues that it reflects Iamblichus’s peculiar view that there is a class of purified souls that can descend and yet remain unharmed.
We include this essay in this volume as a necessary corrective to seeing Platonism or even anti-Platonism everywhere or to characterizing thinkers like Philo and Origen as Platonists and then, as is often the case, reducing unique forms of thought to adjectival denominationalisms. Even in cases where we can detect traces of the use of or meditations upon Platonic dialogues such as the Parmenides or Timaeus, these may be in the service of an entirely different universe of reference. Jean Reynard then gives us a fascinating tour of the possible presence or significant lack of the Parmenides in Gregory of Nyssa and his older brother, Basil of Caesarea.
2, Gerald Bechtle explores what it means to metaphysicize the Aristotelian categories. If the categories link language and reality and if they imply not only the ten most general classes of being but also the movement from the physical to the metaphysical (a movement unsupported by Aristotle’s Categories on its own), then their application to divine things is understandable. Moreover, in the tradition of Categories exegesis, this application paved the way for their application to properly Christian theological entities (praedicatio in divinis), not simply in Boethius but even earlier with the Cappadocians (as Radde-Gallwitz’s Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nyssa, and the Transformation of Divine Simplicity [Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming] also makes clear).