UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Teleological mortality in Plato's Timaeus

Ji, Xi; (2017) Teleological mortality in Plato's Timaeus. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

PhD Thesis.pdf - Submitted version

Download (1MB) | Preview


This thesis aims to show how Plato attempts to bridge the gap between immortal and mortal nature in the Timaeus. It explores the similarities and dissimilarities between the constitution of the immortal existents, i.e. the cosmic soul and human immortal souls, and the mortal existents, i.e. the cosmic body and the human bodies. In the knowledge of the similarities, that is, the soul and body are fashioned using the Forms and Receptacle as common components, the distinction between the immortal souls and mortal bodies seems not to be an absolute one. The dissimilarities lie in that the two kinds of existents are created in different ways, which entail that they differ in structures and modes of motion. The similarities and dissimilarities altogether explains why the immortal souls and mortal bodies appear to be utterly different existents but can be connected to and communicate with each other. The embodiment of the cosmic soul in the cosmic body yields an everlasting creature such as the cosmos itself. Whereas the embodiment of the human immortal soul in the physical body results in the former’s being disrupted and the generation of two kinds of mortal souls, i.e. spirited and appetitive parts of souls. The spirited part of soul is designed as an intermediary between the immortal soul and the body as well as between the immortal soul and the appetitive part of soul. The tripartite soul and its interaction with the mortal body reveal Demiurgic concerns for humans. Humans are endowed with mortality intentionally for the sake of cosmic completion and perfection. The Demiurgic compensatory arrangement, i.e. the structural affinity between the cosmos and humans and purposefully designed bodily parts and organs, allows humans, as mortal creatures, to bridge their own gap with the everlasting cosmos by imitating the latter.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Teleological mortality in Plato's Timaeus
Event: UCL
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Keywords: motality, immortality, teleology, Timaeus
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1574679
Downloads since deposit
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item