Summixis, Spermata and Nous: Anaxagoras’ pluralistic Ontology

Claudia Rosciglione


The aim of this paper is to provide an interpretation of Anaxagoras’ thought as a form of Philosophy of Nature which, unlike Parmenides’, admits of the coming-to-be and the passing-away which are meant as the continuous mixture and separation of the natural matter.

As opposed to a platonistic and metaphisical  interpretation, this paper tries to outline an Anaxagorean cosmology, according to which the physis is accounted of as unity that stems from multiplicity, that is from the summixis of manifold different ingredients which keep on being in continuous motion.  This paper shows that such an interpretation of Anaxagoras’ nous can be consistent with an anti-teleological and anti-anthropomorphic view of nature; this interpretation moves away from the classical one of Zeller. An anti-metaphysical construal of nous is provided that considers it mainly as a regulatory principle that causes the originary mixture to move. This mixture would be only organized in such a way to enable it to preserve its own manifold character whithin a continuous dynamic process, which the nature itself is made of.

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ISSN: 2281-3209                DOI Prefix: 10.7408

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