Pre- Socratic

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The reading was mainly about the ideas of the pre- Socratic philosophers. They asked and answered the first questions dealing with philosophy and the nature of the world. The questions that concerned the philosophers the most were "Out of what substance is the world made?" and "Is there something permanent underlying this world of change?" A philosopher named Heraclitus from Ephesus in Asia Minor had his own ideas about these questions. Heraclitus said that fire is the matter that holds everything together. He believed that fire is always transforming, and thus it's in an uninterrupted state of change. Heraclitus ideas were contradictory to the Milesians. He alleged that fire is an object or a material thing. He said it's a unity, not the unity of matter of basic change, but the unison of pattern. Heraclitus thought that everything in nature frequently changes and nothing is ever vanished in nature.

He believed that nothing is everlasting apart from change. Heraclitus assumed all things are in a state of "flux." That means everything is always changing and nothing is long lasting. He said the world is made up of opposites. For example, he thought if we were never sad than we would never experience happiness. Heraclitus said that without continuous opposites, the world wouldn't subsist due to one-sidedness. He also thought that fire is not accidental but God's reason or logos. He said this reason is the cause of everything that happens in nature. Heraclitus believed that God is the fire, and so are the souls of human beings. He believed that God is in everything.

A philosopher named Parmenides disagreed with both Heraclitus and the Milesian philosophers about the cause of change. He believed that our senses give us an erroneous portrait of the world. Parmenides thought that reality is...