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Beyond the Shadows: The Metaphysics of the Platonic Tradition

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By Tim Addey & Guy Wyndham-Jones.

This volume presents an outline of the metaphysics of the Platonic tradition which the authors hold as having its roots in the mythic writings of Homer and Hesiod, having been developed through the Pythagorean and Orphic schools, scientifically unfolded by Plato, and received its finest written flowering in late antiquity in the works of Plotinus, Iamblichus, Proclus, and many others.

The book is divided into two sections. In the first, introduced by Guy Wyndham-Jones, extracts from the works of ancient philosophers concerning the One and the Gods unfold the divine summit of the Platonic metaphysics. This section especially demands more than ordinary study: each piece acts as a starting point for the deepest meditation, and calls upon the reader's deepest faculties.

The second section, by Tim Addey, aims to give the new student a framework from which to begin the serious study of the subject. It shows how the orthodox understanding of Plato, based on the division of reality into abstract form and material manifestation is inadequate for the proper understanding of the tradition. Instead a more subtle six-fold division of the universe is delineated as the way in which the divine sources of the universe unfold in progressive stages to the furthest extremity of things. It explains how the universe is understood in this tradition to be a single entity, which not only proceeds outwards in an ordered way, but also returns to its source in a similar manner.

192 pages. Paperback.

ISBN 9781898910954.

  • About the Series

    The Prometheus Trust publishes a number of books under their "Students’ Edition Series," which are designed to act as introductions to various aspects of Platonism. These inexpensive paperbacks serve to make the living tradition of Platonism available to the widest array of readers.

    See all Students' Editions