Read Journey of metaphysics (5 thedition) pages 3-33 and 57- 68 and
Timaeus and Criteus Timaeus dialogue
• Means “after physical science”
• Standard compilation of Aristotle’s works.
• Tries to get to the ultimate principles of reality: what is the universe all
• Origins in ancient Greece
o Greeks were able to look at the world in a different way than the rest
of the world
o Tremendously prolific in every area of western thought.
• Western culture origins: Ancient Greece and Judeo-Christian Islamic
foundations (Jerusalem and Athens)religious backgrounds
• Aristotle definition: Being qua being: study of being in its most fundamental
o Being: the sum total of everything that exists.
• Science: based on empiricability.
History of Metaphysics
• Based in the Ancient Greek Island Ionia
o Early philosophers sometimes referred to as Ionians
• Beginning of Ionian philosophy: 600 BCE
• Ionians speculated about the nature of reality
o Usually speculations were tinged with religious influence o Ionians made break from mythos to logos (mythology to reason)
• Focused on two questions about nature of the world
o Substance: What is the world made of? What is everything around us
formed out of?
o Change/Motion: Universe is always moving and changing but somehow
stays the same. How?
Examples: leaves changing color, water changing to ice and
Things always stay at rest in their natural state, and yet the
universe is always moving. What makes the universe move?
o Answers: Thales – semi-quasi mythical founder of philosophy
Everything is composed of water
Soul drives the universe. o Anaximander – There is no single primordial substance, but rather
pairs of opposites (qualities) that came together to form the physi