Homework Question on Theses of Gorgias Nihilism
1) “Now, most of the earliest philosophers regarded principles of a material kind as the only principles of all things. That of which all things consist, and from which they are originally generated, and into which they are finally dissolved, is persisting substance, although its attributes change. This, they affirm, is the element and first principle of Being. Hence, too, they hold that nothing is either generated or annihilated, as this primary entity always persists.” – Aristotle
Explicate and discuss this passage in light of your recently acquired knowledge of ancient philosophy.
2) Explicate and discuss the distinction between numerals and numbers. How does this distinction provide prima facie evidence for the truth of platonic account of the nature of numbers, and/or other mathematical objects? Is there an alternative to the platonic account of the nature of numbers (and/or other mathematical objects)? Elaborate.
3) “This kosmos, the same for all, no god made, nor any man, but it always was, and is, and will be, an everlasting fire, kindling by measure, and going out be measure.” Explicate and discuss this passage by Heraclitus of Ephesus, paying careful attention to the fact that Heraclitus has denied the existence of an arche. Also, do not neglect to discuss Heraclitus’s concept of the logos.
4) Discuss and analyze the theses of Gorgias’s nihilism, as presented by Sextus Empiricus. Show that Gorgias’s nihilism is self-refuting.
Homework Answer on Theses of Gorgias Nihilism
Discuss and analyze the theses of Gorgias nihilism as presented by Sextus Empericus. Show that Gorgias nihilism is self-refuting.
The theses of Gorgia Nihilism present him as a rhetorician, an orator who was also a Sicilian philosopher. Gorgia is considered to be the founder of sophism, a traditional movement that was associated with a philosophy to emphasize on the use of rhetoric in politics and civic. He was an itinerant teacher who was paid after giving instruction in rhetoric, since they could teach anything and the opposite. Gorgia, as a sophist had the ability to make strong and weak arguments implying that he was a wise man in Greek. In the 4th and 5th centuries, sophists like Gorgia were the very prominent figure in Greece because of their great social success. Plato was the first person to use the word rhetorike that was used as art logo by sophist.
Gorgia among other sophist set up schools to give instruction in rhetoric at a fee. Philostratus explains that the life of Gorgia began by practicing extemporaneous oratory. Whenever he asked for a topic, he was too bold that he could deal with any question raised, implying that Gorgia was too confidence with himself and knew everything. Gorgia died at 108yrs in Thessaly.
Gorgia was attributed with four works in his lifetime. The Athenians funeral oration, the apology of palamedes, the nonexistent and the Encomium on Helen. His original work on nature has been lost and it only exists in two different paraphrases the Sextus Empiricus that was against the professors and the other was the work entitled Melissus, Xenophanes, Gorgias. The palamedes and Helen manuscript was distinct from the others; historians consider it to be a significant contribution in the dicanic argumentation. The Athenian funeral oration was a stylistic and a genre source used in Plato’s menexenus. Gorgia used rhyming style is more poetic that employed figurative expressions, humor and metaphor.