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Old talk[edit]

Someone who knows what Neoplatonism _is_ needs to add something about it here. The present entry gives no real indication of the philosophy. And para. 2 merely duplicates what is said under Plotinus. neo platonism is ...

Pamplemousse 02:57 Oct 9, 2002 (UTC)

I agree, in particular looking at the introduction. The intro needs to say much less about history, and it needs to have (and mostly consist of) a very short summary of the neoplatonist philosophy. -- 05:14, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

On the other hand, it also misses the entire Paris school, from which sprang both Abelard's Conceptualist mediation on Nominalism (an immanent theism) and the Victorine Realists whose philosophy led, through John of Ruysbroeck, to Thomas à Kempis. These are the very roots of the Sorbonne.Jel 07:54, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

As the article on Saccas says "As he designedly wrote nothing, and, with the aid of his pupils, kept his views secret, after the manner of the Pythagoreans/.../", I suppose it may not be the best to call him "illiterate" - or we could use the same description for Pythagoras, too.

I would say Neoplatonic tendencies in 20th c. Western philosophy have mostly been reduced to esoteric schools of thought, but I haven't researched the subject thoroughly enough to say anything definite. While I'd like to point on the strong Neoplatonic influence in modern Russian philosophy (Alexey Losev et al.) as a contrast, but without any comments on the West it would be pretty biased. Could someone describe the fate of Neoplatonism after its reanimation by Ficino? Oop 23:35, Sep 16, 2004 (UTC)


It would be nice if someone with better english knowledge than me would at an parapgraph about the great influence neoplatonism had on Sufism (Islamic Mysticism) and Islamic Philosophie. The article at the moment is too oxident-centered.

Write it here in such English as you can muster (or Spanish, French, or German), and I will carry it into the article. -- Jmabel | Talk 05:25, Oct 19, 2004 (UTC)


The Ismailis were late neoplatonists, i.e. they developed their doctrine not earlier than the first half of the 10th ct. AD and not in North Africa but in Persia where it moved slowly noth-west. Their earlier doctrine was of a gnostic nature. I'm not so much into it but according to this study here: "Halm, Hein. Kosmologie und Heilslehre der frühen Ismailiya. Steiner: 1978." that's what it is. --Zorroz Msgs 16:21, 24 February 2006 (UTC)


How much of the text in the Islamic section is copyrighted? We can use short quotations from copyrighted works (according to US fair use laws at least), but they have to be set in "quotation marks", and ideally,

"they should be set off from the main text in block quotes."

Best, QuartierLatin1968 El bien mas preciado es la libertad 02:55, 7 January 2006 (UTC)

It looks like there are definite copyvios on this article. It's sad that nobody followed up on this for months. Maestlin 22:09, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Whose copyright might we be infringing upon? Was it listed at WP:CP? Jkelly 22:23, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Are you absolutely certain that you're not looking at legitimate or illegitimate Wikipedia:Mirrors? Jkelly 22:40, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Most of the section on Islamic Neoplatonism came from Neoplatonism in Islamic philosophy, which has a copyright notice. The entire section on Renaissance Neoplatonism, including all subsections, came from Renaissance Neo-Platonism, which also has a copyright notice. I am fairly confident these two are not mirror sites because they both have copyright dates in the late 1990s. I believe there is more, but I will have to take a closer look. Maestlin 22:45, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
In that case, yes, this does look like a problem. Jkelly 22:47, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
And this is where it happened. (talk · contribs) back in January. Jkelly 22:52, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
The good news, if there is any, is that the rest of the article seems to be sound. My suspicions about it had been raised by what turned out to be a mirror site. That still leaves a lot of the article as a problem. What should I do? Maestlin 22:58, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
List it at WP:CP with all of the information we discovered. Jkelly 23:16, 7 June 2006 (UTC) I'm wrong, we revert back to the last good version. Jkelly 23:23, 7 June 2006 (UTC)


I know the arbitration rullings already, however, I do think that in this instance, Lyndon LaRouche has a place of mention, given that his philosophy is merely a form of Neo-Platonism (albeit, a strict fundamentalist one). Most of his conspiracy theories are based on Schiller's own theory of a historical struggle between Plato's Rationalism and Materialism (as advocated by Aristotle). Is some mention of him allowed? This is a relevant artical. -- IdeArchos 01:12, 11 March 2006 (UTC)

That's the wrong way 'round. A link to this article might make sense from that politician's article, but this isn't a list of everyone who has said that they were inspired by Neoplatonism. Jkelly 22:24, 7 June 2006 (UTC)


Article: The concept of the One was not as clearly defined in Plato's Timaeus as it later was by Plotinus' Enneads. Does Timaeus define "the One" at all? Maybe it's just the Zeyl translation, but I can't find any mention of it. Dan 21:39, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

removing Modern neo-platonism[edit]

no such movement in modern philosophy today recognizing a modern school of Neo-platonism. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:04, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

But there is a cited source in that paragraph. Shawnpoo 04:07, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

John D. Turner[edit]

"The Neoplatonism of Plotinus and Porphyry has been referred to as really being orthodox (neo)Platonic philosophy by scholars like Professor John D. Turner." This sentence is something like the fourth or fifth of the article. The link it provides is down and the sentence seems to be of no real importance and possibly an advertisement for the professor; it just seems odd and out of place. (PhilipDSullivan (talk) 22:40, 7 February 2008 (UTC))

It is amusing what google can do [1]. So are you implying by "no real importance and possibly an advertisement for the professor; it just seems odd and out of place." That scholars and their work no longer have a place at wikipedia? That sourcing articles is a form of advertising and vanity.Hey uh what Neoplatonic scholar and member of the International Neoplatonic Society do you purpose we replace Professor Turner's citations with [2]? What of the group is your favorite scholar? What set of their work do you enjoy the best, I mean which one do you think would actual adhere to wiki policy and improve the article. I think Ed Moore personally but you know peer pressure can force people to give up the truth and go right to the devil, just look at Martin Heidegger. So who's your favorite Neoplatonic philosopher? Are you implying that because a link that republishes Professor Turners' work is down that the points are no longer valid or are made up?

LoveMonkey (talk) 04:58, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

I would appreciate it if you calmed down. Take a second look at the sentence I mentioned. Not only did it not have a working link, but it is a terrible sentence. When I read articles I look for things that seem out of place. I apologize if I have upset you in anyway. (PhilipDSullivan (talk) 17:11, 9 February 2008 (UTC))

I would appreciate it if you would refrain, from making any more silly assumptions. Rewrite the sentence if you don't like the wording. Grow up and stop deflecting (if you can make demands why can't I). The sentence reflects the division between Iamblichus and Porphyry and of course Gnosticism. If you can rewrite it to be clearer, do so. Please do so if responding pains you so much, to the point of ridiculous overly dramatic exaggerations. LoveMonkey (talk) 23:51, 9 February 2008 (UTC)

Why on earth would someone with so much anger want to be a part of a collaborative effort? Lovemonkey, are you always this hostile on every article you work on? Similarly, why would anyone want to help write this article if they have to deal with you? I bow to you, good sir: correct the sentence yourself, or leave it in the piss-poor condition it currently is in. (PhilipDSullivan (talk) 06:54, 10 February 2008 (UTC))

Why on earth are you insisting on the silly assumption that my responses are out of anger? Why on earth are you not answering the questions I have asked you? Now I would appreciate it if you would follow your own advice and calm down. Instead of say, projecting back on me your "no show" behaviour. What scholars are you basing your work upon seriously. What scholars works and not your opinion (which is OR and not allowed) are you basing such a criteria of piss poor wording upon? Your complains are compared to whom? What segment of their works? What scholars and sources do you and are you bringing to this article? How knowledgable are you about the subject matter? Where bookwise and the like did you obtain your knowledge. I have already stated that I get mine from reading books on the subject. Why the dodging? You can call to task, but then blow smoke and attempt to confuse and engage in emotional hysterics and outragious assumptions, when the standard is applied to you?
Now ante up "Good sir", your the one who's complaining, your the one whos standard is so important, so lets see it already. Again of the sentences that are piss poor, as long as it creates no distortions (as I found even just yesterday, --as if only one group of Neoplatonists believed in henosis--) go ahead and rewrite them. Stop projecting on me some warped sense of oversensitivity and jump to it. If you wish to leave, good-bye. in the interm from your comments, you should consider that projecting and dodging and blowing smoke will not absolve you from anything, nor doing these things, would ever present an example of collaboration. Put up, jump to it. Stop complaining, stop whining and collaborate already. Lets see you reword those sentences you don't like, to reflect encyclopedia standard. Get over it and jump to it already. Lets see what you've got. LoveMonkey (talk) 17:33, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

Unethical accusations[edit]

"no real importance and possibly an advertisement for the professor"

Hey PhilipDSullivan also pretty please with cherrys on top, stop making accussations and assumptions of unethicial behaviour. My sentence about Professor Turner has no such vanity, since advertisments like you have accused and implied have no place on wikipedia. Your comments make me wonder if either you are hostile to the Professor or Professors in general. It also makes me think that you are completely willing to hurt the collaborative Wikipedia project by making such a bad and provocative accusation. You have no excuse for posting such a statement. I think anyone in review of this would see that assuming, the sentence is an advertisment for the professor as now any sourcing for that matter, would in the very least be "unacceptable" and "irresponsible" comments. As the statement could be perceived as undermining a legitimate source and making sourcing information now advertising. LoveMonkey (talk) 17:49, 10 February 2008 (UTC) LoveMonkey (talk) 17:49, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

Just incase the link goes down again[edit]

GNOSTICISM AND PLATONISM THE PLATONIZING SETHIAN TEXTS FROM NAG HAMMADI IN THEIR RELATION TO LATER PLATONIC LITERATURE by JOHN D. TURNER University of Nebraska-Lincoln pages 425-459 in Gnosticism and Neoplatonism (Ed. R. T. Wallis and J. Bregman. Studies in Neoplatonism 6. Albany: SUNY Press, 1992)

In the late third century, Sethianism also became estranged from orthodox (Neo)Platonism under the impetus of attacks and refutations from the circle of Plotinus and other Neoplatonists which were just as effective as those of the Christian heresiologists. At this time, whatever Sethianism was left became increasingly fragmented into various derivative and other sectarian gnostic groups such as the Archontics, Audians, Borborites, Phibionites and others, some of which survived into the Middle Ages. LoveMonkey (talk) 05:09, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Martyr not a Neoplatonist[edit]

Why does the article say that Justin Martyr was converted from Neoplatonism to Christianity? If Neoplatonism didn't even exist before the 3rd century, this is too late, since Justin Martyr lived in the mid 2nd century. Hope nobody minds if I take it out. Jbe educational (talk) 05:23, 8 March 2011 (UTC)JBE EducationalJbe educational (talk) 05:23, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

I agree. I'm taking this out. I'm also taking out the two sentences in the introduction which talk about the "cross-pollination" of Neoplatonism/Christianity. We don't know who the Dionysius the pseudo-Aeropagite was, nevermind do we have any evidence that he was converted to Christianity, having been a pagan Neoplatonist (except of course that the individual from whom he borrowed his pen name was supposedly converted by Paul in Athens, but the author the other works attributed to Dionysius the Areopagite simply was not that person). — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:58, 19 February 2014 (UTC)

Useless introduction[edit]

As it stands, the introduction is four paragraphs long without managing to give a single shred of information on what Neoplatonism is actually about. From other comments here, it seems that this has been an issue since 2007 (!) and still isn't fixed. All the intro paragraphs provide is history of where Neoplatonism came from, without providing any summary of the central concepts. drt1245 (talk) 01:17, 27 September 2011 (UTC)

Yup. Not a single shred.... & that's still true now, in 2018! ...with the exception of this short phraise:
"Neoplatonic philosophy derives the whole of reality from a single principle, "the One"".
You say; "an issue since 2007 (!)" ....Jeepers, how many years now has this article not met Wikipedia standards!? Somebody should take a gander at Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Lead section!     Cheers!
--2602:306:CFCE:1EE0:CCB5:DDE9:52E:F9B3 (talk) 18:52, 17 February 2018 (UTC)Doug Bashford

Platonism and Neoplatonism[edit]

/* Platonism and Neoplatonism */ this section has no references for its claims, presents arguments that may be original, and is not in accord with mainstream scholarship. It doesn't mention the other, dominant scholarly views on this.

I don't have time to list all the references, but the mainstream view is that the neo-Platonic reading of Plato is strained. This reads like it was written by someone defending the neo-Platonist reading. It doesn't provide authoritative references for its conclusions from modern scholars, (nor ancient ones), and does not present the other views on this.

I think the views expressed, for example that the sentence about essence in the Republic is ample justification for the philospohy of Plotinus, should be referenced to an authoritative modern reference. and that the opposing view, that the sentence is subject to other more likely meanings, should aso be expressed and referenced.

The entire relationship of neo-Platonism to Platonism is a complex subject with many differing views on it. This section as it stands is unbalanced.

01:09, 18 October 2011 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by RiceMilk (talkcontribs)

Okay, it's been tagged for long enough, so I've deleted that paragraph. If someone wants to create a new section exploring the relationship between Platonism and Neoplatonism, with references, then they have my best wishes. Pasicles (talk) 20:34, 31 March 2012 (UTC)


Who is Hole? A reference? Kortoso (talk) 20:21, 10 September 2013 (UTC)

That does kind of stick out, doesn't it. It looks like they were added via this edit back in 2009 by an IP. I tried a few Google searches to try to figure out what it could be but the best I could find were mentions of "Rabbit Hole" (names of websites, etc.). Perhaps there's someone with more expertise than me who could think of a different name to put there? Seems like Yates might be appropriate given the content? --Rhododendrites (talk) 02:56, 11 September 2013 (UTC)

i've made changes[edit]

I've been working on the article for the past three days or so, mostly on the introduction. I hope that people approve of the changes that I've made; I've been rather bold, and people might disagree with some of the things that I've taken out, so I understand if ya'all want to make some changes. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy on Neoplatonism begins by criticizing whether "Neoplatonism" is a useful term, and that for a time something like this was present in the introduction. I thought it'd be worthwhile to start a new section on the history of the term Neoplatonism. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:21, 20 February 2014 (UTC)


Aquinas read Pseudo-Dionysius (q.v.) not Dionysius himself. I changed the reference. (UTC) Sorry - forgot to log in. 43hellokitty21 (talk) 03:05, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

The introduction remains useless[edit]

After reading the introduction one still has no idea what Neoplatonism actually is. This issue was brought up 12 years ago, 7 years ago and 3 years ago so I'm bringing it up again. Can somebody please add just one sentence describing the key ideas of Neoplatonism (if anyone on the face of this planet actually knows what it is)? Brightnsalty (talk) 00:43, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

→→→→→→I think that the introduction when you made this comment was actually sufficient in providing a concise description of what Neoplatonism is in its opening sentence. Nonetheless, I've made some changes to the intro that I think unpack what the original sentence is supposed to mean. Better? Hopefully it's an improvement, but the intro still needs work. Longlonglongnightnightnight (talk) 03:43, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

introduction improvements[edit]

I tried, and sorry for the edit spam, I'm new. I did what of that I could in the first paragraphs; I think this article could benefit from A LOT of reduction -- move the list of Neoplatonists to the category page entirely, and make the basic description of the concepts 1. ACTUALLY BASIC, 2. flow together read-ably and 3. link to the individual concept pages for depth. (which I'm not (yet) capable of doing)

The history and influences on later schools of thought I don't know enough to touch, but it's important to me to make it clear that Neoplatonic thought was universally polytheistic or henotheistic (interpret-able through the lens of any one of many equally-infinite gods -- the influence of "oriental" and "egyptian" cults meant that it wasn't just a theology of this or that Olympian mentioned in Plato but built as a framework that meant to make philosophical sense of the universe for ALL ancient polytheisms -- NOT monistic or monotheistic) and created in both rhetorical and logical opposition to christianity. Gwenbasil (talk) 05:06, 3 October 2015 (UTC)

I'm restoring the introduction before your changes. While I agree that the page as a whole would be served by significant reductions, your changes to the first few paragraphs are, in my opinion, too extreme, and, unacceptable as a summary of Neoplatonism. The points three points that you reduce Neoplatonism to -- that it's an "exegesis of Plato", that it's a "way of life", and that it attempts to "systematize the revelation of the gods" -- are all peripheral points, and are quite vague. For instance, it's far too bold a claim to suggest that Neoplatonism is an "exegesis" of Plato, given that none of the most important texts of Neoplatonism -- the Enneads, Proclus' Elements of Theology, On the Mysteries, etc. etc -- are in any explicit sense "exegeses". That is, while they may contain explicit and implicit allusions to Platonic texts, they are not texts that belong to the literary genre of commentary. Also, your point about "systematzing the revelation of the gods" is simply vague. I don't know what you mean by it, and I certainly don't see it reflected in all of the major Neoplatonic texts. Finally, your point about the medieval reception of Neoplatonism is *far* too reductive. There were many ways that Neoplatonism influenced medieval philosophy, as well as subsequent eras in the history of philosophy. Nevermind that there is, despite your objection, undoubtedly a monotheistic or at least a monistic component to Neoplatonism already -- Neoplatonism arguments and concepts required minimal adaption to fit in the "monotheistic" theological frameworks of the Abrahamic faiths.
My previous revisions to the introduction were based on the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy's entry on Neoplatonism and on Pauliina Remes' book on the subject. Their views reflect dominant scholarly opinion on the field, and therefore they are are good models for distilling the essential points of Neoplatonism. Longlonglongnightnightnight (talk) 08:26, 24 October 2015 (UTC)

Lead, again[edit]

I've made another attempt to shorten the lead; I'm also re-ordering the info in the article itself now. Joshua Jonathan -Let's talk! 06:26, 11 July 2017 (UTC)

The article itself needs further clean-up; no wonder that previous discussions didn't get further than the lead... Joshua Jonathan -Let's talk! 06:32, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
It's also remarkable that no mention wa sbeing made of Meister Eckhart, nor of the Transcendentalists. Joshua Jonathan -Let's talk! 06:34, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
Today I was hasty in replying to the 27 September 2011 complaint above: Useless introduction, but since I now see that this theme is repeated so often, I wonder if anybody will read it. Unlike many of the Lead complaints, his is that the Lead is: "....paragraphs long without managing to give a single shred of information on what Neoplatonism is actually about...."   Bingo! Forgive me for repeating my above reply here:
Yup. Not a single shred.... & that's still true now, in 2018! ...with the exception of this short phraise:
"Neoplatonic philosophy derives the whole of reality from a single principle, "the One"".
You say; "an issue since 2007 (!)" ....Jeepers, how many years now has this article not met Wikipedia standards!? That lead is among the worst I've seen, it's like an empty box. Is this topic akin to taboo? cog·ni·tive dis·so·nance?   Yes, the topic is difficult. Somebody should take a gander at Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Lead section!     Cheers!
--2602:306:CFCE:1EE0:CCB5:DDE9:52E:F9B3 (talk) 19:57, 17 February 2018 (UTC)Doug Bashford
I agree the lede is terrible. One of the major problems is its focus on the 'term' neoplatonism. Wikipedia is not a dictionary, so it should focus on the topic, not the word. So, the first sentence should be like 'Neoplatonism is a ...' and then detail how it is going to be defined for the scope of this article. I see in the first note that an editor is concerned that the term was never self-identified, but was a creation of 19th century historians. I do not consider this a valid concern, since a huge portion of terms for history are only later assigned, for example: ancient times, dark ages, medieval, pagan, age of migration, reformation. Ashmoo (talk) 09:17, 5 November 2018 (UTC)

Removing AD[edit]

What if we removed AD from the dates in the article to avoid AD/CE conflicts? - AD occurs only 5 times in the article - as the era is clear in all cases, AD or CE are not really necessary and can be removed without creating confusion - seeking concensus before making the change in accordance with WP:ERA - cheers - Epinoia (talk) 18:52, 28 December 2018 (UTC)