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101. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Béatrice Bakhouche Le dualisme en question dans le Commentaire au Timée de Calcidius: (réponse a G. Reydams·Schils)
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Before I reply to the account of Gretchen Reydams‑Schils on the theory of matter in the Commentary on Timaeus by Calcidius, I would like to clarify the organization of various topics into the commentary. Nevertheless the first point will deal with the study of dualism in Plato’s dialogue. Then I will show that the cosmos works as a continuum and I will present the ‘symphonic’ composition of the Latin exegesis. About the matter‑hyle, I will try to link it with the soul.
102. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Gérard Journée Dualités présocratiques
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This papers tries to show at first that the dualism Plutarchus attributed in the De Iside et Osiride to most ancient thinkers, mainly «presocratics», has been largely influenced by the doxographical overview given by Aristotle at the beginning of the Metaphysics, which not only assumed that Empedocles was the first to introduce principles of Good and Evil, but also compared the theory of Anaxagoras to the alleged platonic dualism of the One and the Other. If dualities are quite present and important in some of the main theories of the so‑called presocratic philosophers, the question remains to determine in which cases these dualities can be compared to dualism in the sense this word has taken since Hyde. The second part of this article will thus consist to try to answer this question on the ground of three examples of thinkers for whom dualities played a crucial role : Alcmaeon, Parmenides and, chiefly, Empedocles, who had obviously linked Love and Strife to an axiological pattern in his Katharmoi.
103. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Cristina Viano Une substance, deux natures: les alchimistes grecs et le principe de la transmutation
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In Greek alchemical texts, the dualism plays different roles. This paper’s purpose is to apply the category of “dualism” to the fundamental principle of transmutation, designated by most alchemists as “divine water” or “sulphur water” (theion hudôr). The analysis of this notion highlights the necessary shift from colouration to transmutation, a capital question in alchemy. In fact, it is both one of the most important ambiguities in alchemy and the focus of the relationship between theory and practice.
104. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Luciana Gabriela Soares Santoprete L’éthique gnostique au‑dela du dualisme hérésiologique: (réponse a J.·D. Dubois)
105. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Jean‑Daniel Dubois Gnose, dualisme et les textes de Nag‑Hammadi
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Gnostic studies in the XXeth century have been influenced by Hans Jonas’ The Gnostic Religion and his existentialist approach of Gnostic movements, until the discovery of the Coptic Nag Hammadi texts, in 1945, gave access to a series of documents coming from the Gnostics themselves. Progressively, the panorama of Gnostic sects and movements deeply changed, calling into question the notion of “dualism” used by the Church Fathers when refuting their Gnostic opponents. If Plotinus criticizes the Gnostic contempt of the world and their life without ethics, the recently commented texts from Nag Hammadi attest the use of the Platonic demiurge understood in the frame of the biblical version of the creation. The beauty of the world is not absent from Gnostic texts. The role of the Gnostic demiurge in documents like the Apocryphon of John or the Valentinian Tripartite Tractate, for example, shows that access to salvation is possible in a philosophical and theological system that is monistic. The heresiological category of “dualism” has too often hindered the study of the Gnostics which does not correspond to what the new documentation brings out.
106. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Jean Kellens Les origines du dualisme mazdéen
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The discussions about the origin of mazdean dualism are concentrated upon the interpretation of the Gathic stanza Y30.3 which opposes two mental powers called mainiiu and usually translated by «spirit». The divergence of the understandings led to a controversy on the nature of this dualistic opposition : is it philosophical, cosmic or religious ? Do these various distinctions remain relevant now we know that this stanza is not a piece of a sermon, but of a liturgical recitative ?
107. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Izabela Jurasz Heteros theos comme approche du dualisme dans la pensée d’Origene
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Of all the approaches to the concept of dualism in Origen’s thought, this article concerns the issue which does not seem very obvious : his understanding of the expression heteros theos. Is it possible to call Jesus “the other God”, existing aside from the only God ? Thanks to the Dialogue with Heraclides, we can judge the profundity of the issue. According to the Dialogue, heteros theos resembles the language used by Marcion, in which “the other God” means the Demiurge, an antagonist of the merciful God. But the expression also invokes the Judeo‑Christian inspired Christology, in which “the other God” signifies a manifestation of the God Jehovah, or a secondary deity, subordinate to Jehovah. In his other writings, Origen usually avoids calling Christ heteros theos, precisely because of the similarity to marcionism and monarchianism. However, forced to resolve the theological problem presented in the Dialogue, Origen decides to explain the meaning of the term “heteros”. His explanations are inspired by Aristotle’s categories, much simplified and illustrated by examples from the Bible. Origen shows that “difference” can be understood as opposition, but there are other possible interpretations of the term. More than anything, it is relative towards a particular characteristic. Origen’s argumentation, in comparison with other discussions concerning the term (Justin Martyr and Tryphon, Peter and Simon the Magician), illustrates that the understanding of God as “different” may lead to the emergence of dualistic concepts, which are often very radical.
108. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Ivan Guermeur Du dualisme et de l’ambivalence séthienne dans la pensée religieuse de l’Égypte ancienne
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In his De Iside, Plutarch uses the example of the Osirian myth and the cases of Osiris, Horus and Typhon (Seth) to define his doctrine of dualism which according to him offers an explication for the philosophical problem of the existence of Good and Evil. Since the philosopher has based himself on Egyptian mythology, the present study seeks to elucidate what the documentation of “pharaonic” Egypt teaches us about the conception of an opposition between Good and Evil, about the place that the complex figure of Seth takes within this concept, and about the typically Egyptian binary way of thinking.
109. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Helmut Seng Πατρογενὴς ὕλη. Au sujet du dualisme dans les Oracles Chaldaiques
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The Chaldaean Oracles are works of Middle Platonist poetry in Greek dating from the late 2nd century AD and attributed to Julian the Theurgist, who may have produced them together with his father Julian the Chaldaean. Only fragments survive, most via late antique Neoplatonists, whose many and varied individual interpretations often deviate from any meaning possibly deducible from the primary text. The question of dualism in the Chaldaean Oracles can be seen from two perspectives. From an ethical point of view, man stands in the middle between the intelligible and the material and has to choose his way. The material world is described in negative terms as a kind of netherworld and a most dangerous dwelling‑place for man who is exposed to seduction by material pleasure and attacked by demons personifying the passions ; he should turn his mind towards the intelligible. From an ontological point of view, however, matter is not an autonomous (and evil) principle, but originates from the highest entity, the intelligible Father ; for this reason, it is called πατρογενής (although this might be an inference by the interpreters of the Oracles). Ethical dualism is thus combined with ontological monism. The Chaldaean notion of not two, but three worlds, material, ethereal, and fiery (= intelligible), as well as the idea that in special cases a material body might be transformed into an ethereal one, could be interpreted as a kind of mediation of the two positions.
110. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Présentation des auteurs de ce volume
111. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Iain Gardner Dualism in Mani and Manichaeism
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The term ‘Manichaean’ has come to be regarded as synonymous with a radical dualistic perspective, and is now utilised in all sorts of contexts such as literature and politics. Gardner examines what can be known of the actual teachings of the third‑century sage and self‑declared ‘Apostle of Jesus Christ’ known as Mani or Manichaios. His extant writings are surveyed in order to determine what he says about the nature of God and the origin of matter and evil. Particular attention is given to the terminology and symbolism applied to the idea of two eternal and opposite principles, the kingdoms of light and darkness. Gardner considers possible origins for Mani’s teachings in the Judaeo‑Christian, Gnostic and Iranian traditions ; together with the question of further developments within the community after its founder’s death.
112. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Jean‑Baptiste Gourinat Les stoïciens et le dualisme
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The Stoic system is alternatively described as “dualist” because its physics relies on two principles, God and matter, or as “monist”, because these two principles are intimately linked, and belong to the same body. It is difficult to describe the Stoic system as monist, since every substance is a body, and the two principles, while united in the same body, coexist from all eternity since matter is not created by God. But it is inappropriate as well to describe it as “dualist”, because the inferior principle is completely passive and is not a cause, but endures the effect of the active cause. Moreover, matter is not responsible for evil, even if some interpreters, ancient and modern, claimed it : the only metaphysical principle which accounts for the existence of evil is the “affinity of the contraries”, according to which good cannot exist without evil and agent without patient, but this is not a dualist explanation.
113. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Mauro Bonazzi Numenio, il platonismo e le tradizioni orientali
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Contrary to what is often assumed since the seminal studies of Puech, I argue that Numenius’ interest in Oriental Wisdom is part of his Platonist stance. The most important testimony is fr. 1a des Places, which shows that Plato is not only the reference‑point but also the criterion and measure to judge the truthfulness of the other philosophical traditions and religions. Numenius’ dualism therefore can be explained as an attempt to preserve the transcendence of the first principle, the typical problem of Middle Platonists as opposed to Hellenistic philosophies such as Stoicism.
114. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Zlatko Pleše Dualism in the Hermetic Writings
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L’article examine la tension qui existe entre tendances monistes et dualistes dans l'ancien hermétisme et propose de considérer que les écrits hermétiques, tout en opérant dans un cadre dualiste pluriforme (ontologique, cosmologique, anthropologique), soutiennent un modele moniste de la réalité issue d’une divinité transcendante et tout‑englobante. L’imposition d’un état d’esprit dualiste est typique pour les premieres étapes de l’initiation hermétique, suivies par un dépassement progressif de toutes les dualités (Aufhebung) et l’acquisition finale d'un point de vue totalisant et noétique du monde.
115. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Gabriella Aragione, Frédéric Chapot Hermogene: fragments d’une pensée dualiste
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Known primarily through the heresiological writings, Hermogenes goes down in history as a dualist, almost a ditheist, who claimed the doctrine of two coexisting and ingenerated principles : God and the matter. Cleared up the commonplaces and the heresiological strategies of our sources, the analysis of the fragments and of the testimonies about Hermogenes shows that his doctrine was the expression of a specific ontological dualism : far from being an innovative thinker, Hermogenes refused the emerging doctrine of the “creatio ex nihilo” and affirmed the traditional view of the creation as the result of the demiurgic act of God who fashioned and ordered the preexistent matter. According Hermogenes, this dualism did not undermine monotheism, because God and the matter are unequal regarding their essence. It was on the basis of this axiom that he elaborated a theological system characterized by a sophisticate interlacement of anthropological, Christological and soteriological implications.
116. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Daniel Marguerat Le corps, lieu de conflit entre l’esprit et la chair: Anthropologie paulinienne et dualisme
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Pauline anthropology is of a fundamentally Hebrew nature : the body‑σῶμα is a holistic concept that designates man as creature in the world. The body is the way “I” is present in the world : man does not have a body, he is a body. Portraying the whole person, the body is the “temple of the Holy Spirit”, the setting for a sacred presence that transcends humankind (1Cor 6 : 12‑20). However, this body is also the scene of a conflict between flesh and spirit. The flesh‑σάρξ concept does not apply to a part of man but to the whole of man as a precarious, fragile and mortal being. As such, the human being stands up as an enemy of God, taking his human condition on as the foundation of his values (Rom 8 : 5‑8). The Spirit‑πνεῦμα is God’s sphere of influence in the world, to which one becomes affiliated through his spirit. Flesh leads to death while the Spirit turns to life. These two forces compete for the human body. Yet, such a dualism is not by nature ontological but historical : one remains capable of choosing between remaining a prisoner of mortal flesh or letting the Spirit of God dwell in him (Rom 8 :10).
117. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Fabienne Jourdan Introduction
118. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Gretchen Reydams-Schils Calcidius on Matter : A Minimalist Dualism: (summary of presentation)
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Cette contribution est le résumé d’une communication sur la notion de la matiere dans le commentaire de Calcidius sur le Timée de Platon. Pour arriver a un dualisme minimal, Calcidius (a) combine des éléments d’Aristote, des Stoiciens, et de Numénius, mais (b) rejette la notion qu’il attribue aux Hébreux, certains aspects de la notion de Numénius, et d’une notion qu’il attribue a certains Platoniciens.
119. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Isabelle Bochet Dépasser le dualisme: le concept augustinien de natura
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The Augustinian definition of the concept of natura rules out any form of dualism : all nature depends on God, it is what God wanted ; but, in the case of man, nature changes according to the actual relation to God, just as the image of God in the soul can be distorted by sin or reshaped by grace. This historical conception of nature sets Augustine against the Manichaean and Pelagian conception of nature as a static datum.
120. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
François Chenet Le dualisme de l’Esprit et de la Nature du Sāṃkhya
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Sāṃkhya, which is one of the oldest systems (darśana) of Indian Philosophy, advocates an uncompromising dualism in its theoretical metaphysical teachings. There is a fundamental dualism or split at the very heart of reality, and this dualism or split is the fundamental fact of existence.According to Sāṃkhya, there are two co‑present and co‑eternal realities. The first one is the principle of pure Consciousness, the Puruṣa, which is inactive, indifferent, eternally free and Alone. Puruṣa is the soul, the self, the spirit, the subject, the knower. The other of the two co‑present and co‑eternal realities of Sāṃkhya is Nature or Prakṛti : it is the primordial and unconscious “stuff ” of the entire unmanifest and manifest world, whereas Puruṣa is the presupposition of individual consciousness. Nature or Prakṛti is the ultimate material principle and thus the substratum from which manifest, in the presence of the self (puruṣa), the gross and subtle bodies including the mental organs of all living beings. But Sāṃkhya is not a dualism of mind and body or even a dualism of subject and object.In classical Sāṃkhya the world is not derived from consciousness, nor is consciousness derived from the world. The classical Sāṃkhya refuses to understand the world simply as a product of consciousness. It refuses to see the world as an illusory projection of consciousness, and thus it rejects any idealistic monism. Similarly, it refuses to see consciousness simply as a product of the world, and thus it rejects any kind of materialism or naturalism. Thus, it steers an intermediate course or path between the Indian notion of a conscious, cosmic Self or its equivalent, which is the ground of all being, on the one hand, and the notion of a conscious self, which is only an empirical, relative construction, on the other. It maintains, rather, a fundamental dualism, the opposite poles of which function in a kind of dialectical interaction. The fact of consciousness and the fact of the world are two irreductible realities in constant interplay with one another. Though quite separate and unconnected, Spirit and Nature mutually interact to bring about the process of creation, self‑awareness and, finally, enlightenment. But Spirit or Puruṣa and Nature or Prakṛti are always only in proximity to one another, never in actual contact. This is a puzzling notion if one thinks of Puruṣa and Prakṛti as two things. Puruṣa and Prakṛti are two realities of a completely different order.Right knowledge is the knowledge of the separation of the Puruṣa from the Prakṛti. The individual soul (jīva) has to realize itself as the pure Puruṣa through discrimination between Puruṣa and Prakṛti.From a rational point of view, classical Sāṃkhya can be regarded as a bundle of contradictions. Some problems regarding its interpretation are the problem of the nature of the Sāṃkhya dualism and the problem of the connection or relationship of Puruṣa and Prakṛti. The Sāṃkhya system clings to spiritualistic pluralism and dualistic realism, but its very logic indeed impels it to embrace idealistic monism or absolutism.