Metaphysics Quiz: (Sophie 28-55): The Problem of Change

metaphysics: the branch of philosophy that deals with the first principles of reality, including questions about being, substance, time and space, causation, change, and identity. (OED)

1. What did the following philosophers theorize to be the basic substance of the universe?

a. Thales:

b. Anaximander:

c. Anaximenes:

2. How did Parmenides (540-480 BC) explain the problem of how things change? (deductive reasoning; rationalism, pure logic)


3. How did Heraclitus (540-480 BC) solve this problem? (inductive reasoning; empiricism, sense perceptions)


4. What was Heraclitus' conception of God?


5.. How did Empedocles (490-430 BC) resolve the conflict between Parmenides and Heraclitus over transformations in nature?


6. What forces exist, according to Empedocles, which enable these transformations to take place?


7. What was Anaxagoras' (500-428 BC) extremely cool idea about seeds? (Hint: He predicted both genetics and fractals.)


8. How was Anaxagoras also way ahead of his time in his understanding of astronomy?


9. How did Democritus (460-370 BC) resolve the dispute between Parmenides and Heraclitus over transformations in nature in a new way? (Hint: Lego blocks) (atomist, materialist)


10. How did Democritus, a strict materialist, conceive of the soul?



E.C. What do scientists today believe is the most basic substance of the universe?


E.E.C. Who is Hilde?!