A Study of Spiritual Motion in the Philosophy of Proclus by Stephen Gersh

By Stephen Gersh

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This interpretation provides an explanation of the latter term, but leaves no consistent function for the pov+ a Beierwaltes, op. , p. The passage which he quotes at the end of this extract is taken from the Elements of Theology, and it may well be worth quoting the entire passage which seems to have inspired his interpretation. a 76 PHILOSOPHICAL PROBLEMS OF THE CYCLE CAUSATION The only solution is t o understand this latter motion in some other way, and this is precisely what the writer has done.

49-51. ' THE CIRCULAR MOTION OF POWER 63 , very explicit, but it is possible to build up a definite picture by comparing a number of passages which deal with the nature of the hierarchies which compose the spiritual world. I t is a fundamental postulate of Proclus that a cause is more 'powerful' than its effect, that is to say, the higher a cause stands in the hierarchy of reality the more power it possesses. This idea appears a t the beginning of a proof attached to the second general principle of causation (El.

In the last chapter, we saw that power could be understood as a continuum between the complete and the incomplete, and that this continuum stretched from the highest levels of the spiritual world down to the lowest regions of the sensible. ~ In the present chapter, however, we have expanded considerably on this idea of continuum, and it now seems more likely that it is a circular one. We must try to understand exactly how these two accounts fit together. Perhaps a hypothetical example will make the situation clear.

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