Plato’s Angel

13 06 2008

…[L]ater Neo-Platonists thought that Aristotle and Plato agree, are ‘harmonised’, as long as their respective philosophies are well distinguished. Aristotle is valid insofar as he refers to concrete things of our ordinary experience, the general terms we construct in our minds, and the language by which we express them. However, true reality, independent of human categorisation, is only hinted at by Aristotle, and is better studied through Plato. The latter Neo-Platonists frequently allude to the relative value of Aristotle and Plato in their harmonised scheme of Greek philosophy. They usually call Aristotle  daimonos, which in their Greek jargon has the double meaning of ‘ingenious’ and ‘an intermediate to god’. On the other hand, they invariably called Plato ‘divine’. In other words, Aristotle relates to Plato as an angel does to the word of God.

-Lucas Siorvanes, Proclus: Neo-Platonic Philosophy and Science