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Volume 13, Issue Supplement, 2015
Dualismes: Doctrines religieuses et traditions philosophiques

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Displaying: 1-20 of 32 documents

1. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Fabienne Jourdan

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i. origines et figures orientales

2. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Jean Kellens

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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 ?
3. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Nele Ziegler

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The Babylonian Poem of Creation Enuma Elish tells the story of Apsu and Tiamat begetting the first generations of gods, of Marduk vanquishing Tiamat and creating from its corps the whole universe. Can the story of this fight be a hint to a dualistic vision of the universe in Mesopotamia ? The author stresses some arguments against this conclusion even if some of the main elements of dualistic cosmologies are present : combatting forces, non‑existence – creation of the universe, male – female opposition.
4. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Lionel Marti

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5. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Ivan Guermeur

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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.
6. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
François Chenet

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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.

ii. dans la philosophie grecque et latine

7. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Gérard Journée

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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.
8. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Anca Vasiliu

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Aristotle’s main grievances against his forebears, in the first instance Plato, but also Empedocles and Anaxagoras, rely on three theoretical standpoints : the status of the whole and the one, the separation or the immanence of the principle and its ability to act as a cause or not, and finally the possibility of engendering or producing from contraries. An analysis of the criticisms developed in Metaphysics Lambda 10 brings to light both the purpose and the flaws of the Aristotelian indictment. Arguably, Plato has brought things to existence from a secondary dualism, not from an immutable and separate principle, since, according to the Stagirite’s critical reading, the status of that principle remains ambiguous on the grounds that it is used both as an efficient cause and a universal predicate. From the encounter between the theory of causes and of being advocated by Aristotle against Plato and what Aristotle introduces as the Platonic theory of the principle, Ideas and Numbers, emerges a “dualistic” vision of Plato’s thought. However when one endeavours to locate and contextualize in the Dialogues the theses attributed to Plato by his rebellious disciple, that “dualistic” vision not only does not appear to be founded, but one can even find a criticism of the aptness of such interpretation. The example given is that of the fight of the Gods and the Giants in The Sophist ; in that fight between philosophers around the status of the being can be found a great many of the themes and positions mentioned in what is called in Lambda 10 a criticism of the forebears. Isn’t the “dualistic” interpretation of ancient philosophies ultimately the projection of a modern type of reading, sensitive to the mythologizing interpretation fashioned owing to the late popularity of Platonism ?
9. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Jean‑Baptiste Gourinat

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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.
10. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Fabienne Jourdan

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Plutarch is often seen as a dualist philosopher. Yet, when one studies the texts which are most often quoted to back such an opinion, the so‑called dualist doxographies in De Iside et Osiride and in De animae procreatione, one is actually lead to think otherwise. When they are replaced in their context, it so happens that these texts describe the conditions to obtain harmony and the mixing of the contraries which are both necessary to the birth and to the very existence of the universe. However, harmony and mixing cannot be obtained without the receptacle of the contraries that constitute them. Far from being a simple intermediary, this receptacle, which takes different aspects in the different treatises, is indeed a constituent principle according to Plutarch. Without it, there can be neither encounter nor opposition of the contraries, and so, paradoxically, precisely because it is a guarantee of dualism, it makes dualism disappear. Dualism then turns out to be a mere preparatory step in the elaboration of a really triadic philosophy.
11. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Mauro Bonazzi

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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.
12. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Gretchen Reydams-Schils

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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.
13. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Béatrice Bakhouche

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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.

iii. traditions «occultes»

14. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Zlatko Pleše

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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.
15. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Helmut Seng

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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.
16. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Lucia Saudelli, Adrien Lecerf

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In this response, we discuss Professor Seng’s proposal according to which the Chaldaean Oracles call the matter πατρογενής («derived from the Father») and not πρωτογενής («primordial»). We first explain the philosophical problem raised by this philological reading and we formulate an objection to it ; secondly, we take into consideration the Late Neo‑Platonic tradition as an eventual confirmation of the πατρογενής hypothesis.
17. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Cristina Viano

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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.

iv. dualismes dans les textes bibliques, gnostiques, chrétiens et hétérodoxes

18. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
David Hamidović

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Very early after the discovery of the first manuscripts of Qumran in Cave 1, the scholars were agree to describe the Essene world‑view as dualistic. The close study of each document reveals today a more complicated literary situation. The manuscripts of Qumran attest to three kinds of dualism : cosmic dualism, relative dualism, and human dualism. This taxonomy is not to take too strictly because the dualisms can be combined inside a text to reinforce and justify the Essene world‑view, especially the sectarian perspective. The combination is also a proof of the multiple state of dualism in Ancient Judaism. Moreover, we note the relationship between dualism and apocalypticism. The apocalyptical literature may be a source of diffusion of different types of dualism.
19. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Jean‑Daniel Dubois

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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.
20. Chôra: Volume > 13 > Issue: Supplement
Luciana Gabriela Soares Santoprete

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