One at least of these, the "Divination by Birds", was, as we know from Proclus, attached to the end of the "Works" until it was rejected by Apollonius Rhodius: doubtless it continued the same theme of how to live, showing how man can avoid disasters by attending to the omens to be drawn from birds.
1): `If a man sow evil, he shall reap evil,' indicates a gnomic element, and the note by Proclus (7) on "Works and Days" 126 makes it likely that metals also were dealt with.
"The mighty heaven," said Proclus
, "exhibits, in its transfigurations, clear images of the splendor of intellectual perceptions; being moved in conjunction with the unapparent periods of intellectual natures." Therefore science always goes abreast with the just elevation of the man, keeping step with religion and metaphysics; or the state of science is an index of our self-knowledge.
When at long intervals we turn over their abstruse pages, wonderful seems the calm and grand air of these few, these great spiritual lords who have walked in the world,--these of the old religion,--dwelling in a worship which makes the sanctities of Christianity look parvenues and popular; for "persuasion is in soul, but necessity is in intellect." This band of grandees, Hermes, Heraclitus, Empedocles, Plato, Plotinus, Olympiodorus, Proclus
, Synesius and the rest, have somewhat so vast in their logic, so primary in their thinking, that it seems antecedent to all the ordinary distinctions of rhetoric and literature, and to be at once poetry and music and dancing and astronomy and mathematics.
Among the topics are Proclus
' criticism of Aristotle's theory of abstraction and concept formation in Analytica Posteriora II, Alexander of Aphrodisias on the science of ontology, whether there is tension between Aristotle's scientific theory and practice, and Aristotle on causation and conditional necessity.
This is Proclus
, which has very bright inner walls and white rays that extend in all directions except west.
At a minimum, Cusanus' readings in Proclus
would have provided an illuminating counterpoint to Hudson's Patristic investigations.
Piety and theology were manifestly important to the figures who recur in the book--one thinks particularly of Proclus
and Julian the Emperor, not to mention Plato himself.
Walbridge then concludes that "Proclus
would have recognized the philosophical-literary project of Suhrawardi as being distinctively and properly Platonic: he begins with symbolic allegories to introduce the subject, moves on to scientific expressions of the same subject, and ends with loftier allegory, expressing the highest things" (p .
This kind of fiction can be found in such works as the Chrestomathia of Proclus
. The material that concentrates on style owes as much to the approach of Dionysius of Halicarnassus as it does to the later rhetoricians and commentators, but is largely uncritical and irrational in its approach to genre.
It might be argued that among fifth-century thinkers, Proclus
affirmed that more unambiguously than, say, a Christian thinker like St Cyril of Alexandria who believed that the ultimate origin of everything was an indivisible triad.
Among the topics are the continuation of philosophy by other means, polemical arguments about pleasure: the controversy within and around the Academy, the politics of Aristotle's criticism of Plato's Republic, the perfidious strategy: the Platonists against Stoicism, vehementia: a rhetorical basis of polemics in Roman philosophy, and the invisible adversary: anti-Christian polemic in Proclus
' Commentary on the Republic of Plato.