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1. Porphyry's Launching-Points to
2. Porphyry's Against the Christians:
3. Beneath a Sky of Porphyry
4. Five Texts on the Mediaeval Problem
5. The Homeric Questions (Lang Classical
6. Advances in Geology of the Porphyry
7. Porphyry Introduction (Clarendon
8. Porphyry Against the Christians
9. Sententiae (Sententiae Ad Intelligibilia
10. Iamblichus On the Mysteries of
11. Select Works Of Porphyry: Containing
12. Plato and Aristotle in Agreement?:
13. Porphyry, the Philosopher, to
14. Select Works of Porphyry; Containing
15. Porphyry On Abstinence From Animal
16. Geology of the Porphyry Copper
17. Porphyry: The Philosopher To His
18. Porphyry the Philosopher To Marcella
19. Aristotle's Categories and Porphyry
20. Plotinos (1-4); Complete Works,

1. Porphyry's Launching-Points to the Realm of Mind: An Introduction to the Neoplatonic Philosophy of Plotinus
by Porphyry, Kenneth Sylvan Guthrie
 Paperback: 95 Pages (1988-11)
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Asin: 0933999593
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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5-0 out of 5 stars A Lucid Guide to Plotinian Platonism
Porphyry's `Launching Points to the Intelligible,' properly known as the `Sententiae,' is a concise and powerful summation of the main principles of Plotinian Platonism.Essentially it is a paraphrase (hence the title the "Sentences") of many of the central doctrines in the `Enneads' and therefore is a good introductory guide for Plotinian and post-Plotinian Platonism, in general.The over-riding theme to the `Sententiae,' however, is primarily ethical and is reminiscent of the Phaedo, as it champions philosophy as a preparation for death through divine gnosis and civic virtue (liberating one's true-self from the body), culminating with the soul's return to the Intelligible World of Ideas.This short, but vigorous guide to neo-Platonism, will indeed serve as a "launching point" for further inquiry and it is recommended, along with the Middle-Platonist, Alcinous' `Handbook' on Plato, for those just becoming affiliated with neo-Platonism.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Short Outline of Plotinus' Realm of Mind & Universal Mind
This book gets somewhat detailed in semantics and sometimes reminds me of Kantian language, only slightly, in its obscurity. In this, Porphyrys acknowledges his speculations and vague conceptions, which cannot be grasped by imagination. There are instances of sentences that repeat the same word 6 times over in different arrangements that gets confusing and the "One" and universal soul becomes the Kantian "thing in itself," an absolute. Overall, however, the book is not Kantian and relatively understandable.

Some of the points raised are: The "One" is absolute, being everything and nothing, and therefore cannot be conceived by the mind, ultimately, it is a negation. It neither exists nor non-exists, as it is All. There are different levels of reality, the "One" non-changing Mind and true Being and the sensory changing realm of mind. I've been interpreting it through out the book as the moving transitory intelligible/thinking mind and the unchanging perfect intelligence/the consciousness - the soul - which is part of a greater consciousness that makes up the whole. The idea is unity in multiplicity and in this there are differences between parts and faculties. This takes on Plato's transient world of fleeting forms with limits, the Monad and the unlimited world of perfect forms, the Dyad.Four type of virtue to achieve connection with the soul over the mind,To achieve the super-intellectual principle is better viewed by an absence of thought (p.39). For different reasons the soul either turns toward perfection to the producer, or both the producer and the product or to the lower imperfection, the product. The non-discursive intelligence, or consciousness, thinks all thoughts simultaneously, a continuous of movement, an actualization, while the discursive intelligence, the mind, divides as it thinks only from point to point. And this non-discursive intelligence or consciousness perceives the sense object, by intuition (pp. 52-53).

Interestingly the individual souls retain their distinctness despite being a part of a much larger universal soul. "Individual souls, as well as the universal Soul, subsist independently of bodies, without the unity of the universal Soul absorbing the manifoldness of individual souls, and without the manifoldness of the latter splitting up the unity of the universal Soul." (p. 61). "Its diversity implies both division and union . . . diversity is born of the development of the power of unity" (pp. 64-65). The soul is neither a body, nor in the body, but is only the cause of the body, because she is simultaneously everywhere and nowhere in the body. (p. 66) The body, Porphyry writes, is actually in the soul.

This is about an inward search. When you will have achieved the nature of existence in itself and become assimilated to eternal existence you will seek nothing beyond yourself. If you do not seek anything (including your habitual mind) beyond yourself (your consciousness), "if you shrink within yourself and into your own nature (your consciousness - not mind) you will become assimilated to universal Existence, and you will not halt at anything inferior to it. (p. 67) It's a matter of not being caught up with this life of sensory perception, caught up in what to eat, what to wear, what games to play for sensory desires but instead an inward search of the self, the consciousness apart from the limited sensory mind, then you will discover your true self, the universal existence. Most people do not withdraw into their inner selves, they are ignorant of themselves in this way, they do not know themselves. I've read this by later sages, that to withdraw to the self does not require solipsism, but one can both live in this world and apart in the self simultaneously. It's all about a self-knowledge of a deeper more profound silent self that has nothing to do with the sensory world, nor with discursive doctrinal thinking.

With all this said, only a mere segment, it reminds me of what Rupert Sheldrake, Ph.D., calls morphic fields, how biologists cannot find proof of information stored in the human brain, but instead he perceives the brain acting as tuners, tuning into what he calls morphic fields in what he calls morphic resonance of existing habitual patterns in a collective, larger information source. In this we are more in tune with the universe as opposed to the common mechanistic Newtonian view of laws that separates us and the Darwinian view that only equates us from molecules. Rather we are in tune with a larger organism. Creativity is our ability to create new patterns/habits that will enter the morphic fields. A great point on yin and yang; how both are actually part of a trinity, where the duality exists within a circle, an absolute, the ground of being, which represents the third element or the whole that contain both. Each ground then becomes part of a larger ground along with its opposite. ... Read more

2. Porphyry's Against the Christians: The Literary Remains
by Porphyry, R. Joseph Hoffmann
Hardcover: 181 Pages (1994-07)
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Asin: 0879758899
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Prominent among the pagan critics of the early Christians was Porphyry of Trre (ca. 232-305), scholar, philosopher, and student of religions. His Against the Christians, condemned to be burned in 448, was a work of admirable historical criticism. The surviving fragments of this work, newly translated by Biblical scholar Hoffmann, present Porphyry's most trenchant comments on key figures, beliefs, and doctrines of Christianity. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars Eye-Opening Reading
This well researched book summarizes the pagan response to the Gospels.It's fascinating and extremely surprising.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Pagan's Perspective on Christianity
This was an interesting look at Christianity from the perspectives of the Roman/Greek pagans. The only way to remove Porphyry's 15 book work refuting Christianity was to burn them as well as the 30 book reply by Apollnarius and other Christian works which referenced Porphyry directly.

Evidently, Porphyry's work included refutations based on geography referenced in the Gospels, as well as Babylonian law texts 'borrowed' to flesh out the five books of Moses during the Babylonian period, etc. The quotes that have survived have been paraphrased to hide their source and survived in lesser known works. This book is interesting from its historical perspective. I have to admit it was refreshing to hear a defense of Idolatry, the folly of worshiping a criminal and the hypocrasy of celibacy, as since Peter was married (1 Cor. 9:5). Porphyry's criticisms are unique because unlike Celsus, he had studied the gospel writings in significantly more depth (since he was a former convert?).

The Epilogue wasn't bad - it was carefully written and researched, though more footnoting would help.

The book gave me a new perspective on the debate. It is regrettable a form of Graeco-Roman polytheism did not survive to the modern era. Its debate adds new depth to religious thought.Its disappointing to hear from other reviewers that this book would only appeal to 'Christian haters'. This accessment is wrong. However, if you have a hard time reading opposing ideas about 'biblical difficulties', you probably should not read the book.

Because of the dilution of Porphyry's words, and the selection of words design to annoy rather than enlighten, the quotes are not as razor sharp as they should be. You get what survived the intellectual purge and the reason why to evaluate them afresh.

5-0 out of 5 stars Masterful and Ancient, debunking of Christianity
A priceless refutation of both Christianity and Judaism by one of the most astute minds of the third century A.D. Mid-East. Given Christianity's indelible record of death and destruction, its refreshing to examine opposing views of the religion of Christ, from a period before the west completely succumbed to Christianity's barbarous hordes. The pagans have been so maligned in Christian literature and practice, most people are unaware of the depth of their philosophical insight and the logical clarity by which they dismantled the blind faith based Christian religion and its equally questionable parent, Judaism. Read this book and learn how an accomplished thinker of this era viewed these then revolutionary religions, as they bludgeoned and conspired their way to the dominant positions they occupy today.

5-0 out of 5 stars A unique ancient perspective
This book presents a reconstruction of Porphyry's third century work "Against the Christians" taken from the (probably 4th century) text of Macarius Magnes.The excerpts by Porphyry are divided thematically and are accompanied by references to the biblical passages he was referring to.Because almost no anti-Christian works survive from antiquity, this reconstruction is particularly valuable as an insight into how 'pagan' or non-Christian philosophers may have viewed Christianity.Porphyry was obviously familiar with Christian teaching and scriptures, and composed a sophisticated refutation of its doctrine.There were clearly many who were deeply familiar with Christian doctrine and did not reject it out of ignorance.This book would primarily be important for studies on early Christianity, the persecutions and the religion's spread, as well as for philosophy.Because this is one of the only extant philosophical sources that was directed against Christianity. the work is essential reading for Christian-'pagan' relations in the empire.The epilogue to the book may provide a useful background for someone unfamiliar with the context.The translation is good, and the book well-organized and easy to go through. Definitely recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars the fraud exposed
Porphyry is one of history's most astute minds. Our understanding of Aristotle (for instance his Categories) would be much poorer without Porphyry's commentaries. His employment of Alexandrian critical methodology utilised historical analysis to arrive at an understanding of mythical & pseudo historical texts. One such critique by Porphyry exposed a popular book on Persian religious practice, the"Zosimus", to be a recent book and therefore a fraud. He also analysed the Odysseyconcluding that its stories were to be interpreted as allegories. Employing this very same technique, he demonstrated christian mythology to be a series of unhistorical myths. Where-as the god of Greek philosophy (as posited by Aristotle for instance), employed logic and argument to arrive at the "unmoved mover", the Christians demanded that their god be accepted solely on the basis of unquestioning and blind acceptance. In this world of Greek thought, the bible's myths had no chance of survival. (It is not without reason that the Christian's holy book states in 1 Corinthians 1:22-25 "Jews demand miraculous signs and the Greeks look for wisdom, but we teach Christ crucified... the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom"and 1 Corinthians 3:19-20 "For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God's sight... 'The Lord knows that the thoughts of the wise are futile.'")

Porphyry's work it should be noted was written in the context of the philosophical debates of his times, like those of Stoics refuting Epicureans (& vice versa), even the debates between (pagan) Simplicius and (Christian) Philoponus (later) in the fifth & sixth centuries.That Christianity is a fraud was evidently already known in antiquity. Had Porphyry been heeded humanity may have been spared considerable suffering. One amazon reviewer suggests emotively that it is anti-semitic - one suspects solely on the grounds that it critiques what are essentially jewish myths. The same critic even goes so far as to claim that this book will only be appreciated by "Christian-haters". These claims need to be seriously addressed and corrected.
Criticism of Christianity cannot ever make Porphyry's text anti-semitic. Indeed it was on Christianity's exhortation that the greatest acts of anti-semitism have been perpetrated because the christian religion is founded on anti-semitism, refer: 1 Thessalonians 2:14-16.
(One can go further; Hitler's entire campaign to eliminate Jews was a Christian one. Hitler wrote in his Mein Kampf that it was his Christian duty not to tolerate Jews or breed with them; that it "is a sin against the will of the Eternal creator" (p.391 the Manheim translation of Mein Kampf); and that Christian intolerance has been Christianity's greatest strength - and begrudgingly acknowledges this intolerance to itself be Jewish (pp. 412-413, Manheim translation of Mein Kampf).Hitler's Mein Kampf does not name the actual biblical passages that demand intolerance, but they can be found in the Old Testament (especially Deuteronomy 20:16 - as well as other passages, eg, Numbers 33: 51-56, Deuteronomy 12:2-3, etc); and the passages on racial purity can be found inEzra 9:1-2 & Ezra 10:1-4. In p. 598 (of the Manheim translation) Hitler stated that his aim was to re-start where the Germans left off 600 years earlier - that is, restart the Christian Crusades of the Teutonic Knights!)
It pays to remember that a translation of any writingcarries with it certain conventions. One convention that was thankfully abandoned centuries ago is the "de verbo ad verbum" (word for word) translation which rendered texts unintelligible in translation. On this basis, for instance, a modern translation of Plato's use of the greek word "idea" instead now translates "idea" as "forms" to render its greek meaning unencumbered by modern english assumptions on the word. Similarly, the greek word "historia" although literally "history" (in english) would lose the greek meaning of the word: that the history itself has either been WITNESSED by the author (eg Herodotus/ Thucydides), or those the author is quoting from (eg Polibius).

That Porphyry successfully exposed Christian doctrine to be a fraud can possibly be best attested to by the scurrilous reactions to his doing so. It should be noted that Theodosius' edict to have the book burnt was an act emulated in the book-burnings by that other Christian embarrassment, Hitler, (over) one and a half millennia later.

It should be embarrassing to christians that most of Porphyry's other writings on logic were used without interruption by both christians and non-christians: thus Porphyry's logic was sound when used in non-Christiansubjects, but the same logic applied to Christianity was flawed!

... Read more

3. Beneath a Sky of Porphyry
by Aicha Lemsine
Paperback: 240 Pages (1998-03)
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Asin: 070430161X
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4. Five Texts on the Mediaeval Problem of Universals: Porphyry, Boethius, Abelard, Duns Scotus, Ockham
Paperback: 320 Pages (1994-03)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$15.75
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Asin: 0872202496
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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New translations of the central medieval texts on the problem of universals are presented here in an affordable edition suitable for use in courses in medieval philosophy, history of medieval philosophy, and universals. Includes a concise introduction, glossary of important terms, notes, and bibliography. ... Read more

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5-0 out of 5 stars Stunning Introduction to the Complex Medieval Theory of 'Universals'
"It is easy to motivate the problem of universals.Consider these two capital letters: A A. Ignore everything else about them and for now observe only that they are of the same color; they are both black.... Isn't it obvious that you see two colors here, two blacknesses: the blackness of the first A, this blackness, and then the blackness of the second A, that blackness?... But aren't they visually as distinct as the two letters themselves?... The problem of universals is in effect the problem of deciding between these answers" (pg vii).

The reason I included this long quote is to illustrate Paul Vincent Spade's wonderful introduction.He describes in a nutshell the underling problem of Universals in a clear and precise way.This is especially important since the the Late Antique and Medieval philosophers who developed on the theory never manage to explain themselves this precisely.The importance of clarity and concise analysis is vital since the Medieval dialogue about the nature of Universals is complex, sometimes excruciatingly difficult, and an introduction which lays out the basic premises and questions is the first step of comprehension!Also, the introduction briefly summarizes each text EXCERPT and information on each author present in the volume.This volume includes excerpts from from Porhyry's 'Isagoge,' Boethius' 'Second Commentary on Porphyry's Isagoge,' Peter Abelard's Glosses on Porphyry in his 'Logica 'ingredientibus,'' John Duns Scotus 'Ordinatio,' and William of Ockham's 'Ordinatio'.These excerpts trace in chronological order the main philosophers involved with the question of Universals starting with the questions first posed by Porphyry.

The introduction and excerpts form an amazing (yet still somewhat difficult) text for a student interested in Medieval Philosophy.However, the volume's wonderful index of the main terms is a great tool for easy clarification and reference.This is simply an invaluable resource and a great starting point for the study of the Medieval problem of Universals! ... Read more

5. The Homeric Questions (Lang Classical Studies)
by Porphyry, Robin R. Schlunk
 Hardcover: 98 Pages (1994-02)
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Asin: 0820416061
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6. Advances in Geology of the Porphyry Copper Deposits
by Spencer Titley
 Hardcover: 560 Pages (1982-06)
list price: US$39.50
Isbn: 0816507309
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7. Porphyry Introduction (Clarendon Later Ancient Philosophers)
Paperback: 448 Pages (2006-04-13)
list price: US$55.00 -- used & new: US$40.00
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Asin: 0199288690
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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The Introduction to philosophy written by Porphyry at the end of the second century AD is the most successful work of its kind ever to have been published. Porphyry's aim was modest, but he gave highly influential treatments of a number of perennial philosophical questions. Jonathan Barnes presents a complete new English translation, preceded by a substantial introduction and followed by an invaluable commentary, the first to be published in English and the fullest for a century, whose primary aim is to analyze and assess the philosophical theses and arguments which the Introduction puts forward. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars foundation for the study of Logic
If you want to begin the formal study of Aristotelian Logic (the Organon), get this book first as preparation (Porphyry's intro is only 20 pages), seeing as how it was used that way by liberal arts students for a millenium. A very helpful read for understanding distinctions in predication. I shall write another review once I've mastered the contents therein. ... Read more

8. Porphyry Against the Christians (Ancient Mediterranean and Medieval Texts and Contexts, Studi) (Studies in Platonism, Neoplatonism, and the Platonic Tradition)
by Robert Berchman
Hardcover: 258 Pages (2005-09)
list price: US$169.00 -- used & new: US$154.98
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Asin: 9004148116
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This volume is a translation of fragments and testimonia of Porphyry's lost work Against the Christians. The first part of the work examines Author, Title, date of composition, and sources. The second part discusses the structure of Against the Christians. The third part focuses on the religious, philosophical, and cultural background of this text. The fourth section constitutes the translation of the fragments and testimonia of Against the Christians. This work is especially important for historians of religion, philosophy, and Biblical Studies for it is an excellent example of a pagan tradition of scriptural interpretation and criticism of Christianity. ... Read more

9. Sententiae (Sententiae Ad Intelligibilia Ducentes / Aids to the Study of the intelligibles)
by B. (ed.) Porphyry ('Porphyrii'); Momert
 Hardcover: Pages (1907)

Asin: B003Y4B4R2
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10. Iamblichus On the Mysteries of the Egyptians, Chaldeans, and Assyrians
by Iamblichus, Porphyry
 Paperback: 400 Pages (2010-01-12)
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Asin: 1142050173
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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This is a reproduction of a book published before 1923.This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. that were either part of the original artifact, or were introduced by the scanning process.We believe this work is culturally important, and despite the imperfections, have elected to bring it back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide.We appreciate your understanding of the imperfections in the preservation process, and hope you enjoy this valuable book. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

4-0 out of 5 stars Iamblichus: Link in the Golden Chain of Philosophers
Iamblichus' (245-325 AD) biographer Eunapius tells us how one of the philosopher's servants witnessed him perfoming "certain rites alone," when he saw Iamblichus' "garments change to a beautiful golden hue," as he levitated in mid air about "ten cubits" off the ground (Lives, M.S.S. 458 Loeb).Eunapius also divulges another fabulous story in which Iamblichus and his disciples were bathing at the Springs of Eros and Anteros in Gadara, where "he touched the water with his hand...and uttering a brief summons he called forth a boy from the spring," an "Eros" with "golden hair."Iamblichus then performed the same utterance at the other spring and another "Eros" (Anteros?) appeared, who looked like the first, yet his image was of a shadowy figure (ibid 459).Now, whether or not these extravagant tales happened, or contemporary minds are willing to believe they could have happened, this one thing is true--that it links Iamblichus to the pre-Platonic legends of Pythagoras' "golden thigh" and Empedocles "ascent" to Mt. Etna wearing the "golden sandle" of Hecate; and also to the reputed "magical" powers of Empedocles.Additionally, these stories in Eunapius would have undoubtedly given some credibility to the legitimacy of theurgical "manifestations" and "unification" in the esoteric philosophical circles of late-antiquity.Thus, Eunapius has enshrined Iamblichus in the pantheon of Hellenstic wonder-working philosopher-magus' along with Apollonius Tyana, Pythagoras and Empedocles.That Iamblichus and many subsequent philosophers, like Proclus, believed in the authenticity of theurgy and considered it an imperative for unification with the super-essential Deity, the One, is unquestionable.No further proof of this is needed, other than what many regard as Iamblichus' magnum opus, the `De Mysteriis.'The work is classified as Platonic, yet it is rooted in the Chaldaean Oracular tradition; and it is also brilliantly fused with the mystical theologies of the ancients, of the Egyptians, Persians, Babylonians, Orphics and Pythagoreans.Antecedent to the `Mysteries' is Porphyry's `Letter to the Priest Anebo' in which he raises doubts as to the veracity, dignity and usefulness of theurgy in philosophy.The `Mysteries' therefore is Iamblichus' exhaustive and precise response to Porphyry's inquiry, in which he essentially demonstrates that theurgy operates off of a phenomenal "sympathy," extending from the sensible-cosmos to the super-cosmic realm of the purely divine, whereto the theurgist becomes united, with the assistance of the gods, to that higher realm.Iamblichus argues that this unity cannot be achieved through philosophical contemplation alone; instead, the sage must be assimilated to the gods through theurgical `reasons.'All in all, The `De Mysteriis' is a great source for ancient daemonlogies, neo-Platonic metaphysics and theology, or for philosophers of history.Thomas Taylor's elucidating annotations, his relevant excerpts from other significant ancient authors and selections from his commentary on the `Mysteries' add a further depth and luster to this already invaluable work.

4-0 out of 5 stars "You have mail"
As usual, Thomas Taylor's highly sympathetic inveighing adds considerable charm to a classic pagan text. And if you want familiarity with high paganism this book certainly should be on your study list. The crucial issue explored here is Theurgy. As Taylor remarks, it appears to have been an element of orthodox ancient religion that has become lost to modernity. Theurgists presumably were able through long years of training to invoke angels and deities. One is reminded of the communion of saints in the Apostles Creed. Similar ideas also arise in connection with the purported grimoire of Pope Honorious, the Heptameron, and in the ceremonial magic of the Golden Dawn. A very humorous technique employed by Iamblichus is to set up his text as a dialogue-by-mail from the Greek philosopher Porphyry to the Egyptian priest Anebo; the Greek's assertions and questions are followed by the Egyptian's replies. And as the Egyptians considered themselves far superior to the Greeks in all matters philosophical and mystical and magical and religious, it comes as no surprise at all that the Egyptian priest corrects the Greek on every occasion:

"It must be grantedthat there are gods", Porphyry opens.

"Not so", counters the Egyptian priest. "An innate knowledge of the Gods is built into the very fabric of our very being, and so to frame the question thus, as though it could be disputed, is in error." (This of course is a throwback to The Divine Pymander in which it is asserted that "Whatever can be seen has a creator".)

If you wish to seriously study and appreciate this classic text of high paganism, you should obtain a copy ofManly P Hall's taped lecture on this text from the Philosophical Research Society, Los Angeles, CA. Similarly, you might wish to consult the works of Donald Tyson and Israel Regardie. Also, the Prometheus Trust now publishes the collected works of Thomas Taylor in attractive volumes.

5-0 out of 5 stars In fear and love to unify the name...
In this work are collected the neoplatonist Porphyry's "Letter to Anebo" (in which he voices modern-sounding criticisms of religious ritual) and his student Iamblichus' answer to these criticism (which takesthe form of an elaborate rationale and defense for these sacramentalpractices as legitimate *philosophical* means of establishing union withthe divine).This work is of interest because 1) it articulates anauthentic philosophical understanding of the role of ritual as it is isrelated to the neoplatonic goal of re-unification with the divine oneness2) certain of its important arguments remain relevant to contemporarydiscussion in the philosophy of religion, 3) and it holds historicalinterest in that it was influential on all subsequentneoplatonism.

Particularly interesting (and most enduringly relevant) isIamblichus' argument for the impropriety of Porphyry's admission of theexistence of the gods (though Iamblichus of course holds that gods arereal).The problem with Porphyry's concession is that it treats gods asontic beings either having or lacking existence like other beings, ratherthan what neoplatonists held them to be, the ontological source of beingholding all being in existence through its own.Of ontological being,Iamblichus argues, we are comprehended in it, and cannot therefore ascribeor refute its existence; we are in it and are all that we are through it,and cannot speak of it at all unless granted some vantage point as a giftfrom the beyond (hence the rituals Iamblichus prescribes as the divineself-revelation given to humans for establishing that vantage point).Arather sophisticated and modern-sounding argument (and one quite natural tothe ideas under consideration) for how empirical-sounding proofs anddisproofs for the existence of the divine are misguided about what it meansfor a god to be a god, and for how the ritual practices prescribed inreligions are integral to their philosophical significance rather thannegotiable packaging, of perhaps inestimable value to contemporary theisticapologetic.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the most important surviving ancient Pagan texts!
"On the Mysteries" by Iamblichus is one of the, if not THE most important surviving ancient Pagan text from the late Classical world. Iamblichus was considered to be one of the great Neoplatonist philosophersand Theurgists. His works continued to inspire debate for centuries afterhis death, and was lauded by philosophers and condemned by the Church inthe Middle Ages.In this work Iamblichus gives not only a complete Canonof pagan religious thought and belief... he explains the "whys"behind it all. He works to provide the sense and logic behind ancientspiritual beliefs and practices. The Emperor Julian, the last Pagan Emperorof Rome (360 AD) considered Iamblichus to be divinely inspired. The EmperorJulian studied this work for years and used it as the basis for his ownwritings, which are also available from Amazon.com. Anyone researching thesubjects of ancient paganism, philosophy or theurgy will find this book tobe an invaluable addition to their library. The translator of this ancientwork, Thomas Taylor, does an excellent job of providing footnotes andcommentary which makes the text even more accessible. Highly recommended! ... Read more

11. Select Works Of Porphyry: Containing His Four Books On Abstinence From Animal Food, His Treatise On The Homeric Cave Of The Nymphs (1823)
by Porphyry
Hardcover: 292 Pages (2008-10-27)
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Asin: 1437233589
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And His Auxiliaries To The Perception Of Intelligible Natures, With An Appendix, Explaining The Allegory Of The Wanderings Of Ulysses. ... Read more

12. Plato and Aristotle in Agreement?: Platonists on Aristotle from Antiochus to Porphyry (Oxford Philosophical Monographs)
by George E. Karamanolis
Hardcover: 432 Pages (2006-06-08)
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Asin: 0199264562
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George Karamanolis breaks new ground in the study of later ancient philosophy by examining the interplay of the two main schools of thought, Platonism and Aristotelianism, from the first century BC to the third century AD. Arguing against prevailing scholarly assumption, he argues that the Platonists turned to Aristotle only in order to elucidate Plato's doctrines and to reconstruct Plato's philosophy, and that they did not hesitate to criticize Aristotle when judging him to be at odds with Plato. Karamanolis offers much food for thought to ancient philosophers and classicists. ... Read more

13. Porphyry, the Philosopher, to His Wife, Marcella: Tr. With Introduction, by Alice Zimmern. Preface by Richard Garnett (1896)
by Porphyry
Paperback: 92 Pages (2009-07-08)
list price: US$14.99 -- used & new: US$14.99
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Asin: 1112154639
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Originally published in 1896.This volume from the Cornell University Library's print collections was scanned on an APT BookScan and converted to JPG 2000 format by Kirtas Technologies.All titles scanned cover to cover and pages may include marks notations and other marginalia present in the original volume. ... Read more

14. Select Works of Porphyry; Containing His Four Books on Abstinence From Animal Food; His Treatise on the Homeric Care of the Nymphs; and His
by Porphyrius
Paperback: 168 Pages (2010-10-14)
list price: US$25.41 -- used & new: US$25.41
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Asin: 0217989799
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

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This is an OCR edition without illustrations or index. It may have numerous typos or missing text. However, purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original rare book from GeneralBooksClub.com. You can also preview excerpts from the book there. Purchasers are also entitled to a free trial membership in the General Books Club where they can select from more than a million books without charge. Subtitle: Containing His Four Books on Abstinence From Animal Food; His Treatise on the Homeric Care of the Nymphs; and His Auxiliaries to the Perception of Intelligible Natures. Tr. by T. Taylor. With an Appendix Explaining the Allegory of the Wanderings of Ulysses, by the Translator; Original Published by: T. Rodd in 1823 in 304 pages; Subjects: Biography & Autobiography / Business; Language Arts & Disciplines / Library & Information Science; Reference / Bibliographies & Indexes; Reference / Catalogs; ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

3-0 out of 5 stars Select Works of Porphyry, by Porphyry of Tyre, Taylor,Thomas
(Now reprinted). This work consists of (1) Abstinence from Animal Food. Far more than a defense of vegetarianism, this work is a significant resource for Pagan religious symbolism. (2) Auxiliaries to the Perception of Intelligible Natures (i.e. the Sententiae) 44 aphoristic formulations, mostly based on Plotinus. (3) Concerning Homer's Cave of the Nymphs is Porphyry's fine allegorical essay upon the Cave of the Nymphs in the Odyssey Book XIII. Thomas Taylor (1758-1835) the `English Platonist,' was the indefatigable translator of Plato, Aristotle, and the Neoplatonists into English. His work remains of great value, not only for its marked influence on the Romantics and various mystical writers (e.g. Shelley, Wordsworth, Blake, Emerson), but also for Taylor's profound empathy and understanding of the Pagan religious background of Neoplatonism. The fact that Taylor's translations are, in many cases, still the only ones ensures the continuing relevance of his work. ... Read more

15. Porphyry On Abstinence From Animal Food
Hardcover: 196 Pages (2007-07-25)
list price: US$37.95 -- used & new: US$25.61
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Asin: 0548113556
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This scarce antiquarian book is a selection from Kessinger Publishings Legacy Reprint Series. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment to protecting, preserving, and promoting the worlds literature. Kessinger Publishing is the place to find hundreds of thousands of rare and hard-to-find books with something of interest for everyone! ... Read more

16. Geology of the Porphyry Copper Deposits of the Western Hemisphere
by Victor F. Hollister
 Hardcover: 219 Pages (1978)

Isbn: 0895200481
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17. Porphyry: The Philosopher To His Wife Marcella (1896)
by Porphyry
 Hardcover: 82 Pages (2010-09-10)
list price: US$26.36 -- used & new: US$24.95
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Asin: 1168948622
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Editorial Review

Product Description
This scarce antiquarian book is a selection from Kessinger Publishing's Legacy Reprint Series. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment to protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature. Kessinger Publishing is the place to find hundreds of thousands of rare and hard-to-find books with something of interest for everyone! ... Read more

18. Porphyry the Philosopher To Marcella
Paperback: 205 Pages (1987)
list price: US$20.95 -- used & new: US$13.94
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Asin: 1555401392
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19. Aristotle's Categories and Porphyry (Philosophia Antiqua 48)
by Christos Evangeliou
Paperback: 215 Pages (1997-08-01)
list price: US$128.00 -- used & new: US$128.00
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Asin: 9004085386
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20. Plotinos (1-4); Complete Works, in Chronological Order, Grouped in Four Periods: With Biography by Porphyry, Eunapius,
by Plotinus
Paperback: 154 Pages (2010-03)
list price: US$24.11 -- used & new: US$24.11
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Asin: 1150831987
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Editorial Review

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Subtitle: Complete Works, in Chronological Order, Grouped in Four Periods : With Biography by Porphyry, Eunapius, ... Read more

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