Foundations of Greek Philosophy (PHI 302)

Foundations of Greek Philosophy (PHI 302)

Course Description 

During a period of only two hundred and eighty years (600 to 320 BCE), a handful of Greek thinkers set the agenda for the Western intellectual and academic tradition that has followed. In that relatively short time, they formulated the basic concepts of grammar, truth and falsehood, material substance and force. They founded the university system that persists today and devised the first code of logic. They propounded a theory of evolution and the atomic theory of matter. But the early Greek philosophers did not separate the search for knowledge from the spiritual quest. This course sets ancient philosophy against its spiritual and paranormal background: oracular prophecies, out-of-body experiences, shamanic journeys into the other world, and evocation of the spirits of the deceased.

Course Sessions and Topics

This course is divided into ten, one-hour lectures.

Week 1  |  Ancient Greek Oracular Prophecy

Week 2  |  The Oracles of the Dead

Week 3  |  Three Greek Shamans

Week 4  |  Thales and the Origins of Science

Week 5  |  Xenophanes and Heraclitus

Week 6  |  Pythagoras 

Week 7  |  Parmenides

Week 8  |  Empedocles and Democritus 

Week 9  |  Socrates and Plato

Week 10  |  Aristotle

Learning Outcomes for this Course

Outcome 1:  Students will be able to trace the Western philosophical, scientific and academic tradition to its historical origin in paranormal phenomena and spiritual experiences.

Outcome 2:   Students will be able to explain the formative role of the notion of “life after death” in Western thought

Outcome 3:   Students will be able to describe the important contributions to the twelve most influential early Greek philosophers up to the time of Aristotle.

Your Professor

Raymond A. Moody, Jr, M.D. , Ph.D.

M.D., Medical College of Georgia, Ph.D., Philosophy, University of Virginia, specializing in logic, philosophy of language, and Ancient Greek philosophy. Author of Life After Life and other books about near-death experiences, alternate states of consciousness and paranormal phenomena. Dr. Moody was resident in psychiatry at University of Virginia Medical Center and has served as a professor of philosophy and psychology at various universities.