Natural Philosophy of the Greeks by Hector moya

As we know from the history books, the explanation of the natural world was usually left to stories and myths passed down through the generations. Before the Classical Era, civilizations had very little understanding of how the natural world worked and put much less effort into trying to explain it scientifically.

Around, 600 BC, a group of intellectuals and leaders in the Miletus, an Ionian city, started a movement known as the "Ionian Awakening" usually attributed to three thinkers: Thales, Anaximenes and Anaximander. Mainly concerned with a cosmological theory based on natural causes, they rejected any explanation given by other means such as religion, myth and superstition. They began by "agreeing on the notion that all things come a single primal substance". All three had their own assumptions, but all agreed this notion to be true. This was a first step to inciting the process of a hypothesis.
These Milesian thinkers started the process of what would become to be the scientific method, an idea which was a turning point for all history to come. During these times, the Greeks sought to answer their cosmological and physical world. They questioned and predicted eclipses, and overturned the idea that the earth was flat, which came to be by resistance by the mathematician Pythagoras and his followers. To answer such concerns, Greeks used their own observations and criticized their colleges to protect their theories, a process later evolved into peer review.
Greek natural philosophy throughout the Classical Era was then made into an integral part of everyday life. To this day, we still encounter the effects of the invention of natural philosophy. Atomism, a theory credited to Democritus, states that "everything is composed of atoms, which are indestructible and physically indivisible", which is an approach very close to modern science.

Greek philosophy then spread to the rest of Afroeurasia and throughout history. Schools of thought were created, the earliest similar institutions to universities, and natural philosophy eventually was carried on by the Romans, Arabs, and much of the western world such as France, Britain and Spain. Without this integrals part of history, modern science would still be at its infancy, and the process of observing and explaining with logic and reason would be a foreign concept. But, the voices of Greek philosophy ignited a flame that would start the first "scientific" revolution.




Created with images by w100pebble - "justice statue lady justice" • Ranya - "temple of poseidon ancient greek" • Tilemahos Efthimiadis - "Zeus of Artemision, copper (ca. 460 B.C.)"

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