History of Ancient (Ancient Age) PhilosophyJune 28, 2021
It is not possible to think of philosophy apart from its ties to its past; because the semantic content of many philosophical concepts we use today has emerged as the product of thousands of years of intellectual contributions and a universal intellectual cooperation.
For this reason, revealing the meanings of philosophical concepts is, in a sense, equivalent to writing their histories. This makes the discipline of the history of philosophy an integral part of doing philosophy. It should be kept in mind that the activity we call philosophy is a discipline embodied largely in the works of the great thinkers of the past.
The 2500-year long story of philosophy begins with the unique achievements of the great philosophers of the Ancient Greek world, illuminating millennia. Ancient Greek civilization raised the first philosophers of the history of thought, revealed its first concepts and problems, and in this respect, it has a privileged place in the history of Western thought.
Philosophy owes a great deal to the ancient Greek thinkers, who were its fathers. There is no problem in the history of philosophy that it does not contain an implicit but explicit reference to Ancient Greek thought. The culmination of Ancient Greek thought, which started with Thales, the first philosopher of history, reached by relatively late thinkers such as Plato and Aristotle, is considered a brilliant success that has never been repeated in the history of thought. These two men, as indisputably the greatest thinkers of the history of philosophy, have identified all the problems that will be dealt with by the thinkers after them in accordance with the methods and necessities of the discipline of philosophy, the concepts they put forward have almost created a dictionary of philosophy in itself, and this dictionary has been used by philosophers throughout the development process of philosophy. constitutes perhaps the most useful thinking tool to which they have resorted to.
Ancient Greek thinkers discussed and discussed the problems of existence, knowledge, human, morality, society and art, each of which is the subject of different sub-disciplines of philosophy, with a unique integrity and systematicity that has been admired for millennia, and they wrote great works of philosophy whose effects go beyond the ages.
The period in the history of philosophy, especially if Western thought or European philosophy is taken as the starting point, the philosophical activities of the thinkers of the Greco-Roman world, which lasted for about a thousand years. Accordingly, ancient philosophy is the philosophy of the millennium in Western thought, roughly starting from the middle of the first millennium BC to the middle of the first millennium BC. Historically, it begins with Thales and ends with late Neo-Platonic thinkers and Aristotelian commentators such as Simplicios. European later thinkers such as Augustine and John Scottus Erigena are excluded from ancient philosophy, as are philosophers of Islamic philosophy such as Farabi, Avicenna, and Averroes. Ancient philosophy does not include Eastern philosophers of contemporary cultures such as Confucius and Buddha.
The greatest importance of ancient philosophy lies in the fact that it constitutes the common cultural heritage of both Christian and Islamic philosophy and the spiritual and intellectual foundation of Western culture as a whole. From this point of view, ancient philosophy, which is similar to medieval philosophy in adopting the same teleological worldview, has traditionally been classified or categorized in two different ways. In the first classification, which is based on historical, cultural and geographical elements, it is divided into two as Hellenic philosophy and Hellenistic philosophy. Hellenic philosophy, which corresponds to the first three centuries of ancient philosophy, represents its most intense, strongest and brightest period. Compared to Hellenistic philosophy, which has a relatively longer history, or about seven centuries, it exhibits almost completely opposite features.
Accordingly, while Hellenic philosophy began with a break from religious or mythological/poetic thought, with the belief that natural events should be explained by natural causes instead of supernatural causes, Hellenistic philosophy reapproaches religion and gains a mystical character, especially in its late periods or in neo-Platonist philosophy. Where Hellenic philosophy was pure in the sense of being both naive and unmixed with other cultures, Hellenistic philosophy is a philosophy that has lost its Greek purity, at least in the sense of being mixed with Roman culture and partly with Eastern philosophy. The natural environment of Hellenic philosophy is the city-state. The thinker of the Hellenic period tries to answer the ethical-political questions determined by the ideal of reaching a happy life in the city-state. However, the political setting of the Hellenistic period is empire; In this period, the thinker tries to find solutions to the serious problems of the people who are isolated and alienated in the world where the imperial order has expanded its borders. As it can be understood from here, Hellenistic philosophy is a purely theoretical philosophy that believes that the universe is understandable from all aspects, even if it is closely interested in ethical and political issues from time to time, while Hellenistic philosophy covers almost all other disciplines of philosophy