Anaxagoras, Atomism of Leucippus - Democritus - Philosophy


The historians of science consider Anaxagoras (about 500-428 BC) as the first professional scientist to devote himself entirely to the spider. In Greece, the middle of the 5th century. BC. it was a new, previously unknown type of creative personality. Anaxagoras, like all pre-Socratics, was strongly influenced by the principle of the general fluidity of existence. But this principle was opposed by the conviction that the existent is eternal and indestructible, while these two principles are combined. Anaxagoras so stated his views: the Greeks are mistaken, thinking that something has a beginning or an end; nothing arises and does not collapse, for everything is the accumulation and isolation of previously existing things. Therefore, everything that is formed can be called a mixture-division. Hence, there was no act of creation, and there was only a dispensation. Thus, if nothing can come from nothing, then all objects can only be combinations of already existing principles. The fact that in doing so joins or undergoes separation is called seeds or (which is the same thing) homeomeria (from Greek homoios - like and meros - part, this is already something similar to the modern understanding of chemical elements).

In contrast to Parmenides and Thales, who taught that "everything is one," Anaxagoras claimed: "Everything is much"; but the mass of the elements itself is chaotic. What does the elements combine? What is the power of an innumerable set of elemental elements that arranges a comprehensive harmonious system? This force, said Anaxagoras, is Reason (nous) - the force that drives the universe. He was a follower of Anaximenes, and for the first time he added reason to the matter, starting his work (and it is written in full syllable): "All things were mixed, then Mind came and ordered them." He rejected fate as something dark, as well as the case, considering it a cause unknown to the human mind. Reason, as Anaxagoras understood it, is not a moral Reason, but an omniscient and motive force that brings elements to a certain device.

According to Aristotle, Anaxagoras - "the first sober thinker": if he did not directly express that the Universe is the Mind, "acting" eternal process, then subtly realized that this is a self-moving soul. The purpose of the movement is "to fulfill all the good that is in the soul". Anaxagoras first separated the immaterial beginning of thought, or Mind, from matter. This is the new word of this thinker. He realized that matter as such does not explain the phenomena of motion, thought and expediency in the universal world order: these phenomena are not removable from impenetrability, stagnation, extension, purely material properties of matter. Anaxagoras distinguished the material and immaterial beginning of existence and determined the latter by analogy with the reasonable spirit of man. Thus, the concept of a universal principle was first introduced. However, Anaxagoras did not call this the beginning of the Logos. In his system of philosophical views, it plays the role of purely causal-force principle - the world's engine. He came to this view from the comprehension of the phenomena of nature, and not on the basis of analysis of logical processes.

Atomism of Leucippus - Democritus

The Nobel Prize winner, the largest physicist of the mid-20th century, R. Feynman wrote: "If, as a result of a global catastrophe, all accumulated scientific knowledge would have been destroyed and only one phrase would pass to future generations of living beings, , composed of the smallest number of words, would bring the greatest information? I believe that this is an atomic hypothesis ... all bodies consist of atoms - small bodies that are in continuous motion, attracted at a small distance, but repel if one of them is pressed closer to another. In one of this phrase ... contains an incredible amount of information about the world, it is only necessary to attach a little imagination and a bit of consideration to it.

Atomism (from Greek & aacute; tomos - indivisible) was manifested as the movement of ancient thought to the philosophical unification of the fundamentals of being. It is interesting that this hypothesis, developed by Leucippus (fifth century BC) and especially by Democritus (circa 470 or 460 BC - died in deep old age), is associated with the Ancient East.

At the beginning of other ancient thinkers, Democritus and his followers reduced to atoms. And water, and air, and earth, and fire consist of a large number of atoms, differing in their qualitative specifics, but individually not sensually perceived. Atomists viewed the world as a single whole, consisting of a myriad of minute, indivisible particles - atoms moving in the void. In the very concept of the atom (indivisible), its Eleatic origin is highlighted. Atoms, according to Democritus, are indivisible due to their absolute density, the absence of empty spaces and exceptional smallness in them. Atoms and emptiness are the only reality. Atoms are always rushing in an infinite emptiness that does not have a pi-top, no bottom, no end, no edge, colliding, mating and separating. The compounds of atoms form the whole diversity of nature. Atoms have the power of self-movement: this is their eternal nature. It should be noted that the soul, according to ancient atomists, consisted of the finest round and highly mobile atoms, i.e. the ideal was conceived on a par with the material - with a single substance. Atoms form in different configurations, which we perceive as separate things, the difference in the structures of these configurations, i.e. the qualitative diversity of the world depends on different types of interactions between atoms. Thus, a discrete picture of the world existed for more than two millennia, in which being is thought to consist of the smallest and most isolated (discrete) particles of matter, and the relationship between these particles (ie, the principle of interaction) is considered not by being itself, but only by the property of atoms.

Democritus developed a scientific method of cognition, based on experience, observation and theoretical generalization of factual material. Sensations, he believed, represent, though insufficient, but a necessary source and basis of knowledge. Testimonies of the world around us, which give sensations, are supplemented and corrected by the delicate work of the mind. The universe of Democritus is strictly subordinate to the principle of causality: everything arises on some basis and by causality. It is in causality that Democritus saw an explanatory principle in understanding the essence of things and events. He exclaimed with pathos: "Finding one causal explanation is better for me than mastering the entire Persian kingdom!"

According to Democritus, the human soul consists of the smallest, round, fire-like, constantly restless atoms; possessing internal energy, it is the cause of the movement of living beings. He was the first to express the idea of ​​a projective objectification of the subjective image: from the thing are separated the thinnest films (surface), flowing into the eyes, ears, etc. In other words, a kind of fluids flowing out of objects, which, falling into your body through the senses, give rise to sensations, perceptions, ie, sensations. images that we do not feel in us, but in the place where the perceived object is located: otherwise, we would not have dragged ourselves into a plate with, say, soup, but into our eyes. In this case, the visual image is formed by the outflow from the eyes, and from what is visible. (Specially studying this question (the power of the look), I must say: this is an extremely subtle insight of the genius.)

Democritus hesitated on the question of the nature of the gods, but was firm in recognizing the existence of God. According to Democritus, the gods are made up of atoms, and God is the cosmic mind. In a combination of atoms there is a kind of living and spiritual power, and the beginnings of the mind are in the worlds which it bestows with divinity: the world is created by divine reason and the gods help people. The totality of the fiery atoms, poured out throughout the Cosmos, animates everything and gives to the whole Mind.

And in conclusion: the atomism of Leucippus-Democritus was not properly evaluated, while it constitutes one of the greatest doctrines to which the profundity of mankind has reached. Unlike all the ideas of the first principle that have been put forward so far, the idea of ​​an atom contains, among other things, the principle of the limit of the divisibility of matter: the atom was conceived as the smallest particle that emerges as the initial in creation and the last in the decomposition of the material element of being. And this is the genius rise of thought to a fundamentally new level of philosophical comprehension of what exists. And the very concept of indivisibility was introduced by atomists precisely in order that the possibility of an infinite division of a given body would not turn it into nothing and thereby not transform all being into a mirage.

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