Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A system of philosophical and religious doctrines and principles which originated in Alexandria with Ammonius Saccas in the third century, and was developed by Plotinus, Porphyry, Iamblichus, Hypatia, Proclus, and others in the third, fourth, and fifth centuries. The system was composed of elements of Platonism and Oriental beliefs, and in its later development was influenced by the philosophy of Philo, by Gnosticism, and by Christianity. Its leading representative was Plotinus. His views were popularized by Porphyry and modified In the direction of mysticism by Iamblichus. Considerable sympathy with Neoplatonism in its earlier stages was shown by several eminent Christian writers, especially in Alexandria, such as St. Clement, Origen, etc. The last Neoplatonic schools were suppressed in the sixth century.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A pantheistic eclectic school of philosophy, of which Plotinus was the chief (a. d. 205-270), and which sought to reconcile the Platonic and Aristotelian systems with Oriental theosophy. It tended to mysticism and theurgy, and was the last product of Greek philosophy.
- n. a system of philosophical and theological doctrines composed of elements of Platonism and Aristotelianism and oriental mysticism; its most distinctive doctrine holds that the first principle and source of reality transcends being and thought and is naturally unknowable
“It takes its place in the scholastic canon of learned and literate religiosity, heavily imbued with the philosophical ideas of neoplatonism, Augustine, and Aristotle, wrapped up in the scholastic Latin of the schools and universities.”
“I once sat through an entire panel on neoplatonism just to hear a paper, placed at the end, that was an extended comparison between Proust's remembrance of things past and books 8-10 of the confessions. it was delicious.”
“One of the key notions in neoplatonism is that of emanation.”
“Hence there seems to be little profit in belaboring Ibn Ezra's supposed neoplatonism.”
“Julius Guttmann, who may well be responsible for defining medieval Jewish neoplatonism as a historical category, declared Ibn Ezra to be “the last in the line of Jewish Neoplatonists”.”
“The soul's longing for release from this world and liberation, or obliteration, in the divine, are themes which found powerful expression in their liturgies, and which bond them to at least one important facet of neoplatonism and to each other more truly than any specific doctrines that they may hold concerning the origin of matter or the nature of prophetic inspiration.”
“Unfortunately the church fathers, with the exceptions of Origen and Augustine, rejected this view as an overreaction to the heresies of gnosticism and neoplatonism that threatened to subvert the Gospel.”
“Leavitt gave us our fill of Farquharson, along with innumerable digressions about volcanoes, neoplatonism, the Single Tax, and what not.”
“These centuries, with their potent influence of neoplatonism on Christianity, appear to have been sterile enough in medicine.”
“He had made for himself a curious personal religion, a bizarre mixture of theosophy and neoplatonism and Bergsonian philosophy,”
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