Ancient Greek Philosophy


  • A priori knowledge
  • Everything is in constant change
  • The physical world is the shadow of the world of the Forms
  • Everything is imitating the forms in order to be "good"
  • The outside world represents the world of the forms
  • The escaping prisoner represents the philosopher who discovers the form
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  • How do we gain true knowledge?
  • A priori knowledge
  • Demiurge created the world with physical matter
  • Used the Forms as a model
  • The Forms are the innate ideas of things that we have
  • The highest Form is the Form of the Good
  • Forms are perfect
  • Anything physical cannot be perfect because it is in a constant state of decay
  • The Analogy of the Cave
  • The outside world represented the Realm of the Forms
  • The escaping prisoner represented the philosopher who questions how we gain true knowledge
  • The world in which we live is a shadow of the Realm of the Forms
  • The other prisoners's reaction represents the ignorance society has towards new ideas of how to gain true knowledge
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Aristotle - Cause and Purpose

  • Telos - Goal, the final purpose, or aim of a thing
  • A posteriori knowledge
  • The Forms exist within the object itself
  • Where Plato thought that the natural worlds was a reflection of the world of the Forms, Aristotle though that what was in the human soul was simply a reflection of the real world
  • Reality is made up of Form and matter
  • Form - A thing's specific characteristics
  • Matter - the "stuff" that a thing is made of
  • The matter of a thing can exist after the thing itself has ceased to exist
  • Material Cause - what something is made out of
  • Efficient Cause - the thing that made it e.g. an artist making a painting
  • Formal Cause - the kind of thing that something is i.e. it's Form
  • Final Cause - the goal or purpose that a thing moves towards
  • Aristotle belived that the soul is the Form of the body - the soul is simply the sum total of operations of a human being
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