Difference Between Plato and Aristotle

Plato and Aristotle were two of the most important and transcendent philosophers of ancient Greece and whose thoughts, works and writings have directly influenced the different currents of thought to this day.

Aristotle was a disciple of Plato, hence there are many similarities in their ideals but due to influences from other philosophers and the political, cultural and social changes that were taking place permanently, Aristotle presented new ontological ideas, that is, referring to being and everything related to it.

The objective of this article is to present the differences between these two philosophers from the point of view of their ideals and contributions to the culture of knowledge, therefore, we will begin by presenting a brief description of each of them.

Plato

Plato was a Greek philosopher who lived during the years 427-347 BC, he was a disciple of Socrates and who established a series of constants and problems that marked Western thought from his approaches and which, in turn, influenced the currents of social thought such as in Christian theology. One of Plato’s most important contributions was his written work, since, until then, his predecessors had little on paper to capture his knowledge and ideas.

Plato left a large number of writings in dialogue form, known as Platonic dialogues and which are divided into three periods: the Socratic period, the constructive or systematic period, and the late or revisionist period. Through his writings, Plato’s practical vocation can be evidenced, full of inspiration for happiness individually and collectively, guided by moral, ethical, political and religious issues.

Similarly, Plato considered that there were two worlds, the world of sensible objects and the world of ideas, which provided true knowledge. In addition, he considered that all ideas exist in the soul and that to know them you only have to remember using dialectics. Likewise, in politics, he defended the idea of ​​the existence of three social classes such as producers, guardians, rulers and philosophers and that this society was the ideal because each one fulfilled the function that corresponded to him according to what was in your soul.

Aristotle

Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and scientist, born in Stagira, Macedonia, in the year 385 BC, who was a student at Plato’s academy from the age of 17, becoming his disciple. Aristotle is considered the first scientific researcher, since he was the first to classify the sciences, which he divided into theoretical (mathematics, physics and metaphysics), practical (ethics, politics and economics) and poetic (poetics, rhetoric, among others). .).

Apart from this, Aristotle discovered logic and invented the syllogism, a fundamental instrument of Western thought. In addition, he left a large number of written works in different sciences such as logic, physics, metaphysics, ethics, politics, rhetoric, and poetry. Aristotle was of empiricist thought, he considered that the human being was not born with knowledge but that he acquired it through observation and experimentation.

On the other hand, for Aristotle there was only one world, the sensible one, which is full of material things with a form found in them. He thought that to be happy one had to exercise the intellectual and ethical virtues, making use of reason in his actions to moderate vices and customs. Politically, Aristotle thought that the purpose of society is to achieve the good of free citizens, which translates into achieving the good of a particular class (the rich), because for Aristotle people who had to work (working class).

Taking into consideration what has been described, it can be delimited that:

  • Plato was the teacher of Aristotle, whom he considered a brilliant and exemplary student.
  • Plato founded the bases of knowledge while Aristotle broadened the perspective, complementing it with orientations towards the social and the empirical.
  • Plato was a Greek philosopher while Aristotle was a Greek philosopher who is also considered the first scientific researcher, since he classified the known sciences and created new aspects.

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