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The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 3, 1998

Ancient Philosophy

Francesca Calabi
Pages 72-78

The Law of God and the Laws of the Cities in Philo of Alexandria

I evaluate the position of philosophy within Philo’s theory of education as well as its relation to encyclical studies and to the highest forms of knowledge. According to Philo, true knowledge is knowledge of the law of God. Such is the role of philosophy. There exists a strong relation among the various fields of study reflecting the order that exists in all spheres of reality. Order and harmony are the same in an individual, in a state, and in the cosmos. Order and harmony reflects the law set down by God, who is both creator and foundation of such an order. The study of higher truth and the attempt to reach wisdom enlightens secular knowledge and behavior as well. The question is not merely one of maintaining political order; it is, rather, one of adhering to the order established by God. Such order is not open to discussion or alteration.

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