Relationship between Anaxagoras (Anaxagoras) and the Elea School

Relationship between Anaxagoras (Anaxagoras) and the Elea School

June 26, 2021 Off By Felso

Anaxagoras (1500 BC – 429) was an ancient Greek philosopher.

Anaxagoras is an Ionian, that is, a Western Anatolian. This philosopher stood out among the Ionian thinkers, especially with the clarity, clarity and scientificness of his thoughts. For example, he does not have the transmigration rule (based on orphic beliefs). For this alone we can say that he was the first true scholar of the ancient world. In addition, he is the philosopher who turned the attention to Athens for the first time in terms of philosophy.

In keeping with tradition, He settled in Athens in 462. During his residence in Athens, he was in the close circle of the great statesman Pericles. Pericles is one of the statesmen who ensured the rise of Athens both in terms of politics and culture in the period following the Iranian campaign that resulted in the victory of the Greeks. This statesman gathered valuable craftsmen, including the famous sculptor Fidias, to beautify Athens. He also invited famous scholars and thinkers of the time to Athens. Among them is Anaxagoras.

Pericles tried to make Athens the cultural center of the Greek world. As well as being a great statesman, he is a valuable orator and a high cultured person. It is natural for such a person to have enemies. As a matter of fact, the Conservative Party, disturbed by the innovations and opportunities that Pericles made, found the new cultural movements contrary to Athenian customs and dangerous for the society. Athens has always been the scene of endless conflicts between a conservative party and a progressive party. This time, the Conservative Party, unable to deal with Pericles himself, always dealt with and always criticized those around him. Anaxagoras, one of the victims of this logic, was the first philosopher accused of acting against religion and prosecuted. Later, he was wanted to be dragged to the end that happened to Socrates.

It should not be forgotten that in ancient times to act against religion was considered the same as to oppose the state. In other words, religious crimes were also considered political crimes. The education a person carried was of little concern to Athens. But religion was a purely political pursuit. Because the gods were also the gods of the state. For this reason, the person who acted against religion was also deemed to have shaken the foundations of the state’s existence. According to the strongest approach, the reason that brought Anaxagoras before the court was his argument that the Sun was a burning stone mass. It is thought that the reason for this opinion of Anaxagoras was the investigation of a meteorite that fell near Athens at that time. However, at that time, the Greeks considered the sun a god. It was considered a political crime to conceive of something considered a god, namely the Sun, as a mass of stone.

This case caused Anaxagoras to leave Athens and spend the rest of his life elsewhere. According to the philosophy of Anaxagoras: The thought seen both in him and in Empedocles is this; In this universe, in the true sense, there is no change in quality, there is only one movement. In this regard, Anaxagoras has taken a step forward compared to Empedocles, Empedocles thinks that objects consist of four basic elements, whereas Anaxagoras is against the view that there are four elements. According to him, there are as many elements as there are beings. For example, meat is just meat, it has never been made up of four elements. Likewise, gold is just gold, not made up of various elements. Otherwise, how can it be explained that meat consists of things that are not meat and gold is not gold? However, elements are made up of an infinite number of parts, and these particles can be divided until they are too small to be seen. In order for these to gain a visible status, they must come together, unite. However, they are allowed to be perceived in this way. These particles exist all over the universe. A person takes food and with this food his body is formed. This food must contain elements that will make up every part of the human body.

For example, in the food, there must be meat elements that make up the meat parts of the body and hair elements that will form the hair. So everything is contained in everything. If we could separate a piece from the universe down to its very last parts, we would see that it contains all the elements that make up the universe. Invisible infinitesimal particles have no beginning and no end, they have neither existed nor will they perish. The universe consists of these infinitesimal particles combined into a number of objects. Becoming in the universe means fire atoms as fire, flesh atoms as flesh, etc. formed by their merger.

At the beginning of the universe, everything was in turmoil. So there was a state of chaos between these particles. This prevented the particles from coming together to form the universe. Now we have to ask the question: How did this initial mess turn into an ordered universe? In other words; How did a cosmos (ordered universe) come from chaos? Empedocles asked this question of Anaxagoras.