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Emotions in Ancient and Medieval Philosophy$
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Simo Knuuttila

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199266388

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2005

DOI: 10.1093/0199266387.001.0001

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CHAPTER 2 CHAPTER 2 Emotions and the Ancient Emotions and the Ancient Pursuit of Christian Perfection

CHAPTER 2 CHAPTER 2 Emotions and the Ancient Emotions and the Ancient Pursuit of Christian Perfection

Chapter:
(p.111) CHAPTER 2 Emotions and the Ancient Pursuit of Christian Perfection
Source:
Emotions in Ancient and Medieval Philosophy
Author(s):

Simo Knuuttila (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/0199266387.003.0003

Early Christian theories of the emotions were influenced by the Platonic psychology and control oriented therapy as well as by the Stoic theory and therapy. Particularly important were the Stoic doctrine of spontaneous first movements and the ideal of apatheia which the Christian authors qualified by the conception of love. Section 1 deals with the views of emotion, sin, progress, and spiritual experience in Clement and Origen, who were the main representatives of early Alexandrian theology. Sections 2 and 3 deal with the partial reception and modification of this approach by the Cappadocian theologians and the Egyptian desert monks, whose teaching came to influence Western thought through the works of John Cassian. Augustine's view of the emotions and the will is discussed in Sect. 4. Section 5 deals with the ideas of Gregory the Great, Pseudo‐Dionysius, and some other late ancient authors.

Keywords:   apatheia, feeling, first movement, love, sin, spiritual experience, will

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