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Re: [neoplatonism] Re: Smith on Porphyry's Letter to Anebo

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  • John Michalski
    Whether this is an accurate appraisal of Porphry s position - and the spiritual consequences of that position - I ll leave to those better acquainted with
    Message 1 of 48 , Apr 6, 2012
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      Whether this is an accurate appraisal of Porphry's position - and the spiritual consequences of that position - I'll leave to those better acquainted with Porphyry. It is not, however, an accurate appraisal of Augustine. The ontological dualism described is a position that Augustine himself came to reject when he rejected Manicheanism. NO Christian could be such a dualist or hold such a position - for it would be a rejection of the Incarnation.

      The City of God/City of Man dualism to which you point is a MORAL dualism, not an ontological one. It is built on two competing loves; the City of God is inhabited by humans who love God, while the City of Man is filled with humans who love Not-God (particularly, the Self). But both moral cities co-exist in this world, a world which has been united to God whether it likes it or not, thanks to the agency of the Son's incarnation as Jesus of Nazareth.

      Pax,

      John

      --- On Fri, 4/6/12, gregshaw58 <gregshaw58@...> wrote:


      Iamblichus' position is non-dual, Porphyry's dualist.  I believe the the dualist doctrine and world view came to prevail and is reflected in the Augustinian notion of the two cities (of God and Man).  The transcendent was limited to "up there"


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    • Robert Wallace
      Hi Bruce, This sounds fascinating. I ll look forward to seeing it. Best, Bob ... Robert Wallace website: www.robertmwallace.com email: bob@robertmwallace.com
      Message 48 of 48 , Apr 12, 2012
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        Hi Bruce,

        This sounds fascinating. I'll look forward to seeing it.

        Best, Bob

        On Apr 12, 2012, at 8:41 AM, Bruce MacLennan wrote:

        > On Apr 6, 2012, at 4:56 PM, Robert Wallace wrote:
        >
        > > I note that the two titles that you mention, Findlay and Reale, are
        > > both heavy-duty specialized studies. Indispensable as such, of
        > course.
        > > No, David, I hate the idea of "dumbing down." But what I have in
        > mind
        > > is a 150-page (maximum) volume that a non-specialist could
        > reasonably
        > > read and relate to. I think it's an important challenge for a
        > scholar
        > > to be able to write something of that length (or shorter) which
        > > reflects their deepest concerns in a way that's accessible to non-
        > > specialists.
        >
        > I cannot offer what Bob has requested, but I have recently completed
        > a project that has some common goals. As a few of you on this list
        > know, I have been working on a book presenting Neoplatonism as a
        > contemporary way of life and system of spiritual practice. The
        > orientation is practical (think "self-help") rather than
        > theoretical, and the book is intended for an audience that might
        > have no previous exposure to ancient philosophy, and so I've limited
        > the dogma to what is necessary to explain and support the practices.
        > Thus it gives the reader only a taste of Neoplatonic philosophy, but
        > hopefully motivates them to learn more about it. Since, for me, the
        > practices are primary, I attempt to present the dogma in either a
        > religion-neutral or multi-religion perspective, so I hope open-
        > minded contemporary Jews, Christians, Moslems, Neopagans, and indeed
        > atheists and agnostics will find the practices useful. (If you've
        > heard my talks at ISNS meetings, you know the general thrust.)
        >
        > My original goal was something like Bob's 150-page limit, but alas
        > it has grown to 350 (100,000 words), and so I haven't met his
        > challenge. About the first half is devoted to Epicurean and Stoic
        > practices as a foundation for the second half, devoted to
        > Neoplatonic practice, including a contemporary theurgy.
        >
        > Please forgive the self-advertisement, but it seemed an error of
        > omission not to mention it.
        >
        > Best,
        > Bruce
        >
        >

        Robert Wallace
        website: www.robertmwallace.com
        email: bob@...
        phone: 414-617-3914











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