The Philosopher Priestess at Delphi

“Aristoxenus says that Pythagoras got most of his moral doctrines from the Delphic priestess, Themistoclea.” Diogenes Laertius, Lives and Opinions of Eminent Philosophers  Themistoclea was a sacred priestess at Delphi, the site of the revered Delphic oracle, the sanctuary dedicated to the great god, Apollo.  Apollo would speak by way of the sibyl or priestess…

The Women of Philosophy

“[I]f we revert to history, we shall find that the women who have distinguished themselves have neither been the most beautiful nor the most gentle of their sex.”  Mary Wollstonecraft, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman Progress on the “Philosophy Narratives” has been remarkable, covering the span of two ages.  Our opening act was the…

The Philosopher of Paradoxes

“The goal of life is living in agreement with Nature.”  Zeno Zeno of Elea is renowned for his paradoxes. Indeed, they continue to challenge, confound, inspire and amuse even until this day. We can thank Plato for what little we know of Zeno’s life.  Plato wrote in his Parmenides dialogue of a meeting in Athens…

The Philosopher I Love to Quote

“No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.”  Heraclitus I love to quote Heraclitus, because he seems so gentle and serene.  Think again! Heraclitus, who once said that “character is destiny,” believed that war and strife between opposites is the eternal condition…

If Horses Could Draw

“But if cattle and horses or lions had hands, or were able to draw with their hands and do their work that men can do, horses would draw the forms of the gods like horses, and cattle like cattle, and they would make their bodies such as they each had themselves.” Xenophanes of Colophon Xeonophanes,…

The Philosopher Who Loved Numbers

Pythagorean Theorem — or Pythagoras’ theorem: in any right-angled triangle, the area of the square whose side is the hypotenuse (the side opposite the right angle) is equal to the sum of the areas of the squares whose sides are the two legs (the two sides that meet at a right angle). Wikipedia Pythagoras of Samos, the creator of one…