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Plotinus: From the Enneads- Drawing images

Painting by David Roberts


Today’s sharing from the Blue House of Via-HYGEIA is excerpted from the MUST READ ‘Philosophy as a rite of rebirth’, by Professor Algis Uzdavinis, here quoting page 137-138 Plotinus in ‘Enneads’ 5-8.6 to 12 and Frithjof Schuon, in his ‘Esoterism as Principle and as a Way’, page 180.


‘[…] The wise men of Egypt (hoi Aiguption sophoi), I think, also understood this, either by scientific (episteme) or innate knowledge, and when they wished to signify something wisely (dia sophias), did not use the form of letters which follow the order of words and propositions and imitate sounds and the enunciation of philosophical statements, but by drawing images (agalmata) and inscribing in their temples one particular image of each particular thing, they manifested the non-discursiveness of the intelligible world, that is, every image is a kind of knowledge and wisdom (episteme kai sophia hekaston estin agalma) and is a subject of statements, all together in one, and not of discourse or deliberation. But only afterwards others discovered, starting from it in its concentrated unity, a representation in something else, already unfolded and speaking it discursively and giving the reasons why things are like this…’

To read the enigmatic surface of the script which transcends ordinary conventions requires not only an inner calmness and concentration of mind, but also the metaphysical knowledge of analogies and associations.

…/…‘Furthermore, as Plotinus remarked, every element of beauty or harmony is a mirror or receptacle which attracts the spiritual presence to its form or color, if one may so express it; if this applies as directly as possible to sacred symbols, it is also true, in less direct and more diffuse way, in the case of all things that are harmonious and therefore true. Thus an artisan’s ambience made of sober beauty – for there is no question of sumptuousness except in very special cases – attracts or favors barakah, ‘blessing’; not that it creates spirituality any more than pure air creates health, but it is at all events in conformity with it, which is much, and which humanly, is the normal thing.’



About professor Algis Uzdavinis’ book: 🌿 About Frithjof Schuon’s book: 🌿 About Plotinus’ ‘Enneads’:
Plotinus: From the Enneads- Drawing images

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