Aristotle, as a scientist and a great ancient Greek philosopher, is known to many: his name is heard by every person. His life was interesting and rich, and the activity brought an invaluable contribution to science.
Friend and mentor
The greatest ancient Greek thinker Aristotle, in biology and philosophy, left a considerable mark, was born in 384 BC. E. In the Thracian city of Stagir. In 368 BC. E., while still very young, he goes to Athens, where he becomes a listener led by Platon of the Academy. In Plato, Aristotle as a scientist found an experienced mentor and elder friend, whom he admired and whose influence he felt for the rest of his life. They closely communicated until the death of Plato in 348 or 347 BC. E.
Wrong, however, quite common, is the theory that during his presence in the Academy Aristotle was an irreconcilable opponent of Plato, challenged the primacy of his ideas. In fact, Aristotle was in the Academy for twenty years, and it would hardly have been possible had his ideas differed significantly from Plato's views or contradicted the general course of his thoughts.
After the Academy
After the death of the teacher Aristotle leaves the Academy in Athens, in order to establish its branch in the city of Assos in the Asia Minor of Troas. Here he established friendly relations with the local tyrant Hermias, who two years later was accused by the Persians of disobedience and executed. In this regard, Aristotle was forced to move to the island of Lesbos, in the city of Metilena. It was during this period, in Assos and Methylene, that his own philosophical ideas began to form and take shape.
Aristotle and Alexander the Great
Around 343 BC. E. The king of Macedonia, Philip offers Aristotle the position of educator of his son and heir of Alexander. It is the wise teachings of Aristotle had a decisive influence on the formation of the personality of the future great commander. Grateful Alexander, as a token of deepest gratitude and respect, rebuilt the hometown of his mentor Stagira, destroyed during the campaigns of Philip.
After the ascension of Alexander to the Macedonian throne in 336 BC. E. Aristotle left the post of educator and went to Athens, where he created his own school - Likey (near the shrine of Apollo of Likey, Likey), also known as Περίπατος ("covered gallery" where lectures were given). Her listeners were called peripatetic. Aristotle's liqueur was a real research community. It had its own library and staff of teachers, who regularly delivered lectures.
In 323 BC. E. Alexander the Great died. The population of Athens, trying to escape from Macedonian domination, opposed Aristotle. He was forced to leave and settle in Chalkida on the island of Evia, where he passed away a year later.
In general, the science of Aristotle is divided into three periods:
- "Academic" period, time of communication with Plato. Then the dialogue "Evdem" was created, where Aristotle as a scientist agrees with Plato's idea of knowledge as a recollection of Ideas contemplated before birth, and "Protrepticus" - a letter to Femiss of Cyprus, in which the author of the Platonic form theory, says that The real life of the soul begins after the death of the body. Also at this time, perhaps, work was begun on "Physics" and "On the Soul", as well as some work on logic.
- The period of life in Assos and Methylene. This should include the dialogue "On Philosophy," where Aristotle, in biology at that time had not yet made any discoveries, calling Platonism a modern top of the development of philosophy, nevertheless, criticizes the theory of forms. Here, Aristotle already has the idea of God as the "fixed prime mover" of the world. During this period he also works on "Metaphysics" and "Politics", creates "Evdemov ethic".
- Time teaching and research under the arches of Likey. During this period, what Aristotle discovered over the years of his life is determined. He aims to put philosophy on a reliable and sound foundation: he systematically conducts diverse, detailed studies in the field of nature and history. The pedagogical works (lectures) of Aristotle of that time were preserved and were published in the 60s BC. E. Andronicus of Rhodes. Thus, "Metaphysics" is a set of lectures delivered in Likey at different times. The name "Metaphysics" reflects the place of this work in the collection of works of Aristotle, because it is located after the "Physics" (Greek μετα - "after"). But still its content is metaphysical in the modern sense - if "Physics" is addressed to the problems of being subject to movement, then "Metaphysics" is devoted to higher principles and primary causes. The very "Physics", that is, the body of Aristotle's texts devoted to natural science and natural philosophy, also refers to the third period. This includes "On the soul" - the psychological theory of Aristotle, work on ethics ("Nicomachean ethics", "Great Ethics"), political theory (Politics), Rhetoric, Poetics.
Systematization of science
Aristotle as a scientist also systematized philosophy, dividing it into the following areas of knowledge:
- Theoretical philosophy. It strives to achieve pure knowledge, to knowledge in itself, and not to any practical results. Theoretical philosophy includes physics (the study of material, changing objects), mathematics (studying the unchangeable, but inseparable from the material) and metaphysics (refers to the separated from the material, the transcendent and the immovable).
- Practical philosophy. It includes mainly political science, as well as a number of disciplines that Aristotle considers subordinate and auxiliary to politics: the economy, strategy, rhetoric.
- Poetic philosophy. Includes ethics and aesthetics, this also includes the theory of Aristotle in the field of art.
The contribution of Aristotle in the treasury of the world civilization is difficult to overestimate. What Aristotle discovered, it is possible to enumerate for a long time. Many of his theories migrated to the philosophy of the Neoplatonists and medieval philosophy. The terms introduced and used by Aristotle, to this day are the basis of the philosophical dictionary of any of the existing languages in the world.