Beginnings of Philosophy

The origin or beginning of something plays a significant role in its ongoing explication: extreme sensitivity to initial conditions. As Aristotle observes (Ethics 1098b), “arche [origin] seems to be more than half of the whole.” There’s a story that philosophers tell themselves about the beginning of philosophy, a very common story, a story that seems toContinue reading “Beginnings of Philosophy”

The Anaxagoras Problem

In Plato’s Phaedo, Socrates gives an account of what can be called the Anaxagoras problem.  Here’s the problem: Anaxagoras claimed that mind is the origin of all things; however, when describing the way things are, he leaves mind behind and ends up resorting to physical or mechanistic explanations, thereby failing to instantiate his guiding principle.Continue reading “The Anaxagoras Problem”