Volume 14, 2016
La Médiation Discursive dans le Néoplatonisme
Langage discursif et non‑discursif chez Plotin
À propos de l’Ennéade IV, 3 , 18
In Enn. IV, 3 , 18, Plotinus examines two related topics associated with the issue of the soul’s entry into the body, and with the theory of the undescended soul : the use of discursive reasoning, and of discursive language in the intelligible world. In this context, Plotinus explains that both the λογισμός, and the discursive language are inappropriate to the intelligible world ; they characterize the part of the soul that does not remain in the intelligible, and is oriented towards the sensible world. The present study shows that Plotinus seems nevertheless to consider, in the same context, a kind of discursive λογισμός compatible with the condition of the undescended soul. It also shows that the existence of a non‑discursive language, in relation with the Egyptian symbolic writing and with prayer, is equally considered in Enn. V, 8  and V, 1 . Such a solution is anticipated by Plutarch in an exegetical context related to the question how Socrates was able to communicate with his daimôn.