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- DescriptionThis book presents a comprehensive study into Plato's theological doctrines, offering an important re-valuation of the status of Plato's gods and the relation between metaphysics and theology according to Plato. Starting from an examination of Plato's views of religion and the relation between religion and morality, Gerd Van Riel investigates Plato's invative ways of speaking about the gods. This theology displays a number of diverging tendencies - viewing the gods as perfect moral actors, as cosmological principles or as celestial bodies whilst remaining true to traditional anthropomorphic representations. Plato's views are shown to be unified by the emphasis on the goodness of the gods in both their cosmological and their moral functions. Van Riel shows that recent interpretations of Plato's theology are thoroughly metaphysical, starting from aristotelian patterns. A new reading of the basic texts leads to the conclusion that in Plato the gods aren't metaphysical principles but souls who transmit the metaphysical order to sensible reality. The metaphysical principles play the role of a fated order to which the gods have to comply. This book will be invaluable to readers interested in philosophical theology and intellectual history.
- Author BiographyGerd Van Riel (1967), full professor at the Institute of Philosophy, KU Leuven (Belgium), studied classics and philosophy at the Universities of Leuven and Antwerp. He lectures on ancient philosophy, and also holds a course on 'Fundaments of Philosophy' at the Leuven Faculty of Law. His main research areas are Plato and the Platonic tradition, esp. later Neoplatonism (Proclus, Damascius), and Saint Augustine. Gerd Van Riel's works include a monograph on Pleasure and the Good Life: Plato, Aristotle and the Neoplatonists [This book received a Humanities Award of the Royal Belgian Academy], and the Greek-French annotated edition of Damascius, Commentary on the Philebus. He is the author of several articles on ancient philosophy, and on Neoplatonism in particular. He is editor of Augustiniana. A Journal for the Research on Augustine and Augustinianism.
- Author(s)Gerd van Riel
- PublisherTaylor & Francis Ltd
- Date of Publication16/08/2013
- SubjectReligion: Comparative, General & Reference
- Series TitleAshgate Studies in the History of Philosophical Theology
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintAshgate Publishing Limited
- Weight420 g
- Width156 mm
- Height234 mm
- Spine15 mm
- Series Edited byDr Maria Rosa Antognazza,Professor Carlos Steel,Revd Richard Cross,Professor William Desmond
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