A Study in the Philosophy of Science by Evert W. Beth (Eds.)

By Evert W. Beth (Eds.)

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A similar method has been introduced in the study of Leibniz' logic and metaphysics by Russell and Couturat, and its application proved extremely fruitful in the work on Greek formal logic initiated by Lukasiewicz. The preceding pages have shown, it is hoped, that also in the study of Greek philosophy we may hope to obtain new and more satisfactory results by looking at its problems from the viewpoint of modern philosophy ofscience, liberating ourselves from the influence of Plato and Aristotle and of traditional speculative philosophy in general, regardless of the fact that Greek philosophy has, more than the fields of science mentioned above, been influenced by motives of a non-scientific nature.

In point of fact, neither Aristotle's own words: 66) Proof does not refer to the external word, but to the word in the soul, for this is also the case with syllogism, nor Alexander's comment: 66) Not in the words has the syllogism its being, but in the meanings, really contradict the conception of the Stoics. It appears rather that the Stoics refined Aristotle's somewhat indefinite doctrine by dividing his 'word in the soul' into the wordmeaning and the corresponding subjective image, and that much later Alexander, in his commentary on Aristotle, took over the distinction made by the Stoics.

15. ANALOGY OF ARISTOTLE'S THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE WITH MYSTICAL DOCTRINES There is a striking analogy between Aristotle's theory of knowledge and certain mystical doctrines. As a matter of fact, Aristotle's metaphysics aims at administering to man an initiation which is the intellectual counterpart of the initiations he received in ancient mystery cults. This initiation is intended to liberate man from the continuous amazement forced upon him by his inconstant destiny. ANALOGY OF ARISTOTLE'S THEORY WITH MYSTICAL DOCTRINES 35 by giving him once for all an explanation, definitive and irrevocable, of his experiences.

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