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Damascius on Self-Constituted Realities

Marilena Vlad

Abstract

This article analyzes the concept of self-constitution in Damascius’ treatises De principiis and In Parmenidem. On the one hand, I try to see how self-constitution functions within the framework of reality. I identify the different levels of self-constituted reality (τὸ αὐθυπόστατον), showing that each of these levels is also constituted by the absolute One, which is the cause of all things. Self-constitution is present throughout the process in which the One is slowly in labor towards plurality, starting from the highest level of intelligible being down to the level of the particular soul. On the other hand, I also try to show how self-constitution appears at a discursive level. In this context I discuss its crucial role in Damascius’ interpretation of the second and third hypotheses in Plato’s dialogue Parmenides.

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Published Online: 2021-09-08
Published in Print: 2021-09-08

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