Ideas of Empedocles, by Theme

[Greek, c.495 - 435 BCE, Born and lived at Acragas, in southern Sicily. A doctor, and public 'sage'.]

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7. Existence / A. Nature of Existence / 7. Reason for Existence
Nothing could come out of nothing, and existence could never completely cease
7. Existence / B. Change in Existence / 1. Nature of Change
Empedocles says things are at rest, unless love unites them, or hatred splits them
9. Objects / A. Existence of Objects / 6. Nihilism about Objects
There is no coming-to-be of anything, but only mixing and separating
9. Objects / E. Objects over Time / 10. Beginning of an Object
Substance is not created or destroyed in mortals, but there is only mixing and exchange
13. Knowledge Criteria / E. Relativism / 3. Subjectivism
One vision is produced by both eyes
18. Thought / A. Modes of Thought / 1. Thought
For Empedocles thinking is almost identical to perception
26. Natural Theory / A. Heart of Nature / 1. Nature
'Nature' is just a word invented by people
27. Natural Reality / A. Physics / 1. Matter / d. Elements in general
The elements combine in coming-to-be, but how do the elements themselves come-to-be?
All change is unity through love or division through hate
If the one Being ever diminishes it would no longer exist, and what could ever increase it?
27. Natural Reality / A. Physics / 1. Matter / e. Greek elements
Empedocles said that there are four material elements, and two further creative elements
Empedocles says bone is water, fire and earth in ratio 2:4:2
Fire, Water, Air and Earth are elements, being simple as well as homoeomerous
27. Natural Reality / A. Physics / 2. Movement
Love and Strife only explain movement if their effects are distinctive
27. Natural Reality / C. Biology / 3. Evolution
Maybe bodies are designed by accident, and the creatures that don't work are destroyed
28. God / A. Divine Nature / 2. Divine Nature
God is pure mind permeating the universe
God is a pure, solitary, and eternal sphere
28. God / A. Divine Nature / 4. Divine Contradictions
In Empedocles' theory God is ignorant because, unlike humans, he doesn't know one of the elements (strife)
29. Religion / B. Polytheistic Religion / 2. Paganism
It is wretched not to want to think clearly about the gods
29. Religion / F. Problem of Evil / 1. Problem of Evil
Empedocles said good and evil were the basic principles