more from Galen

Single Idea 23248

[catalogued under 2. Reason / A. Nature of Reason / 7. Status of Reason]

Full Idea

The so-called Empiricists in Hellenistic times [as cited by Galen] denied the existence of reason, treating it as a useless theoretical postulate introduced by some philosophers

Gist of Idea

Early empiricists said reason was just a useless concept introduced by philosophers


report of Galen (An Outline of Empiricism [c.170], 87.4-9.28ff) by Michael Frede - Intro to 'Rationality in Greek Thought' p.3

Book Reference

'Rationality in Greek Thought', ed/tr. Frede,M /Striker,G [OUP 1999], p.3

A Reaction

I think 'be sensible' is understood by everyone, but 'use your reason' is far from obvious. The main role of reason seems to be as an identifier for human exceptionalism. Animals obviously make good judgements. Frede thinks the empiricists were right.

Related Idea

Idea 23252 Socrates first proposed that we are run by mind or reason [Socrates, by Frede,M]