DIFFERENCES AND SIMILARITIES BETWEEN PLATO AND ARISTOTLE

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When we mention ancient Greek, first thing come to mind are Plato and Aristotle. These two names are the most important philosophers in the history of philosophy. Plato and Aristotle were almost always have something to say about it. Both ethics, politics, science, science, mathematics, geometry, and many more were interested in the subject.

Plato was a philosopher, as well as mathematician, in Ancient Greece and he was born in the Athens city of Stagirus, in 424 BCE and died in 348 BCE. At the same time, Plato was Socrates’ student, too. Plato founded the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world.

Plato has some written works and the most important of them is Republic. The book is accepted the biggest work about policy present. Besides that, Plato has some other rich works.

As for that, Aristotle was born in the Macedonian city of Stagirus, in 384 BCE, and he in 22 BCE died Euboea, Greece. As is the case with Plato, Aristotle was an ancient Greece philosopher, and also Aristotle was Plato’s student. When he was eighteen, he joined Plato’s Academy in Athens and remained there until the age of thirty-seven (c. 347 BCE). His writings cover many subjects – including physics, biology, zoology, metaphysics, logic, ethics, aesthetics, poetry, theater, music, rhetoric, linguistics, politics and government – and constitute the first comprehensive system of Western philosophy.

Both of them had influenced the history of Philosophy and political history. From before Christ to present, a lot of philosopher, politicians, thinkers and scientists had followed their views and opinions. The followers also explore and criticize the opinions of Plato and Aristotle.

Plato and Aristotle have an important role for development of philosophy department, however they have some differences themselves. Sometimes they accept each other’s ideas, but they often have the opposite opinion. For example, Aristotle considers ideas for real being, and accepts that, form is a quality or property. Overall words are proper nouns. Archetypally, the word tree is the name of substantive being, on the other hand, the same word is the name of unique feature. In Plato’s thought, all trees are trees, because the trees are similar an idea of tree. As for that in Aristotle’s thought, all trees have a common trait common trait, so they are trees.

Another discrepancy is trueness. According to Plato, the trueness is something that we think our minds, however Aristotle brings forward that trueness is something that we comprehend with our sense organs. Plato says that, actually, the things we see in the nature are in the world of ideas or in the human spirit. And these are just a reflection. On the other hand, Aristotle has a reverse situation, because he say that, the things that in the human spirit are reflection of the things in the nature. If there is nothing in senses firstly, there is nothing in the nature, too. But then, Plato argues that if there is nothing in the word of opinions firstly, there is nothing in the nature, too. Aristotle also says that, in us, all kinds of views and opinions that rooted by the way of seeing and hearing. Wisdom is empty without senses.

Universal sentence is just a tool, for Aristotle, it is not an aim such as in Plato’s thoughts. In Plato’s thoughts, when knowledge reaches to universal, it will be actual. Aristotle does not want to know universal, he wants to know singular, because universal constitutes the conceptual essence of objects. Therefore, thing to do in the knowledge, establish a connection with singular and universal, and make inferences singular from universal. So much so that, the name of that method is deductive method.

For all those differences, Plato and Aristotle have common trait. For example, they are more systematic comparing to other philosophers. Something else, the views on the literature. Both regard to the literature as an imitation of real life, and it is called Mimesis. But still, Plato ve Aristotle differ on the description of the imitation, practicability of the imitation and the impact on the people.

As a result, present, Plato and Aristotle’s thoughts influence to philosophers, politicians, thinkers and scientists on a lot of categories, like philosophy, policy, education, literature, science, ext. Both have contributed greatly to the understanding of today’s philosophy and literature. The largest of these effects even today is still continuing the tradition of Aristotle’s definition of tragedy is under progress.

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Nasrettin GÜNEŞ

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