Home About Network of subjects Linked subjects heatmap Book indices included Search by subject Search by reference Browse subjects Browse texts

Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



10313
Sextus, Against The Mathematicians, 9.132
NaN


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

4 results
1. Plato, Phaedrus, None (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

244c. otherwise they would not have connected the very word mania with the noblest of arts, that which foretells the future, by calling it the manic art. No, they gave this name thinking that mania, when it comes by gift of the gods, is a noble thing, but nowadays people call prophecy the mantic art, tastelessly inserting a T in the word. So also, when they gave a name to the investigation of the future which rational persons conduct through observation of birds and by other signs, since they furnish mind (nous)
2. Plato, Timaeus, None (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

71e. as good as they possibly could, rectified the vile part of us by thus establishing therein the organ of divination, that it might in some degree lay hold on truth. And that God gave unto man’s foolishness the gift of divination a sufficient token is this: no man achieves true and inspired divination when in his rational mind, but only when the power of his intelligence is fettered in sleep or when it is distraught by disease or by reason of some divine inspiration. Tim. But it belongs to a man when in his right mind to recollect and ponder both the things spoken in dream or waking vision by the divining and inspired nature, and all the visionary forms that were seen, and by means of reasoning to discern about them all
3. Cicero, On Divination, 1.6, 1.34, 1.109, 1.117-1.118 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

1.6. Sed cum Stoici omnia fere illa defenderent, quod et Zeno in suis commentariis quasi semina quaedam sparsisset et ea Cleanthes paulo uberiora fecisset, accessit acerrumo vir ingenio, Chrysippus, qui totam de divinatione duobus libris explicavit sententiam, uno praeterea de oraclis, uno de somniis; quem subsequens unum librum Babylonius Diogenes edidit, eius auditor, duo Antipater, quinque noster Posidonius. Sed a Stoicis vel princeps eius disciplinae, Posidonii doctor, discipulus Antipatri, degeneravit, Panaetius, nec tamen ausus est negare vim esse dividi, sed dubitare se dixit. Quod illi in aliqua re invitissumis Stoicis Stoico facere licuit, id nos ut in reliquis rebus faciamus, a Stoicis non concedetur? praesertim cum id, de quo Panaetio non liquet, reliquis eiusdem disciplinae solis luce videatur clarius. 1.34. Iis igitur adsentior, qui duo genera divinationum esse dixerunt, unum, quod particeps esset artis, alterum, quod arte careret. Est enim ars in iis, qui novas res coniectura persequuntur, veteres observatione didicerunt. Carent autem arte ii, qui non ratione aut coniectura observatis ac notatis signis, sed concitatione quadam animi aut soluto liberoque motu futura praesentiunt, quod et somniantibus saepe contingit et non numquam vaticitibus per furorem, ut Bacis Boeotius, ut Epimenides Cres, ut Sibylla Erythraea. Cuius generis oracla etiam habenda sunt, non ea, quae aequatis sortibus ducuntur, sed illa, quae instinctu divino adflatuque funduntur; etsi ipsa sors contemnenda non est, si et auctoritatem habet vetustatis, ut eae sunt sortes, quas e terra editas accepimus; quae tamen ductae ut in rem apte cadant, fieri credo posse divinitus. Quorum omnium interpretes, ut grammatici poe+tarum, proxime ad eorum, quos interpretantur, divinationem videntur accedere. 1.109. Sed ut, unde huc digressa est, eodem redeat oratio: si nihil queam disputare, quam ob rem quidque fiat, et tantum modo fieri ea, quae commemoravi, doceam, parumne Epicuro Carneadive respondeam? Quid, si etiam ratio exstat artificiosae praesensionis facilis, divinae autem paulo obscurior? Quae enim extis, quae fulgoribus, quae portentis, quae astris praesentiuntur, haec notata sunt observatione diuturna. Adfert autem vetustas omnibus in rebus longinqua observatione incredibilem scientiam; quae potest esse etiam sine motu atque inpulsu deorum, cum, quid ex quoque eveniat, et quid quamque rem significet, crebra animadversione perspectum est. 1.117. Quo modo autem aut vates aut somniantes ea videant, quae nusquam etiam tunc sint, magna quaestio est. Sed explorata si sint ea, quae ante quaeri debeant, sint haec, quae quaerimus, faciliora. Continet enim totam hanc quaestionem ea ratio, quae est de natura deorum, quae a te secundo libro est explicata dilucide. Quam si obtinemus, stabit illud, quod hunc locum continet, de quo agimus, esse deos, et eorum providentia mundum administrari, eosdemque consulere rebus humanis, nec solum universis, verum etiam singulis. Haec si tenemus, quae mihi quidem non videntur posse convelli, profecto hominibus a dis futura significari necesse est. 1.118. Sed distinguendum videtur, quonam modo. Nam non placet Stoicis singulis iecorum fissis aut avium cantibus interesse deum; neque enim decorum est nec dis dignum nec fieri ullo pacto potest; sed ita a principio inchoatum esse mundum, ut certis rebus certa signa praecurrerent, alia in extis, alia in avibus, alia in fulgoribus, alia in ostentis, alia in stellis, alia in somniantium visis, alia in furentium vocibus. Ea quibus bene percepta sunt, ii non saepe falluntur; male coniecta maleque interpretata falsa sunt non rerum vitio, sed interpretum inscientia. Hoc autem posito atque concesso, esse quandam vim divinam hominum vitam continentem, non difficile est, quae fieri certe videmus, ea qua ratione fiant, suspicari. Nam et ad hostiam deligendam potest dux esse vis quaedam sentiens, quae est toto confusa mundo, et tum ipsum, cum immolare velis, extorum fieri mutatio potest, ut aut absit aliquid aut supersit; parvis enim momentis multa natura aut adfingit aut mutat aut detrahit. 1.6. The Stoics, on the other hand (for Zeno in his writings had, as it were, scattered certain seed which Cleanthes had fertilized somewhat), defended nearly every sort of divination. Then came Chrysippus, a man of the keenest intellect, who exhaustively discussed the whole theory of divination in two books, and, besides, wrote one book on oracles and another on dreams. And following him, his pupil, Diogenes of Babylon, published one book, Antipater two, and my friend, Posidonius, five. But Panaetius, the teacher of Posidonius, a pupil, too, of Antipater, and, even a pillar of the Stoic school, wandered off from the Stoics, and, though he dared not say that there was no efficacy in divination, yet he did say that he was in doubt. Then, since the Stoics — much against their will I grant you — permitted this famous Stoic to doubt on one point will they not grant to us Academicians the right to do the same on all other points, especially since that about which Panaetius is not clear is clearer than the light of day to the other members of the Stoic school? 1.6. Ah, it is objected, but many dreams are untrustworthy. Rather, perhaps, their meaning is hidden from us. But grant that some are untrustworthy, why do we declaim against those that trustworthy? The fact is the latter would be much more frequent if we went to our rest in proper condition. But when we are burdened with food and drink our dreams are troubled and confused. Observe what Socrates says in Platos Republic:When a man goes to sleep, having the thinking and reasoning portion of his soul languid and inert, but having that other portion, which has in it a certain brutishness and wild savagery, immoderately gorged with drink and food, then does that latter portion leap up and hurl itself about in sleep without check. In such a case every vision presented to the mind is so devoid of thought and reason that the sleeper dreams that he is committing incest with his mother, or that he is having unlawful commerce indiscriminately with gods and men, and frequently too, with beasts; or even that he is killing someone and staining his hands with impious bloodshed; and that he is doing many vile and hideous things recklessly and without shame. 1.34. I agree, therefore, with those who have said that there are two kinds of divination: one, which is allied with art; the other, which is devoid of art. Those diviners employ art, who, having learned the known by observation, seek the unknown by deduction. On the other hand those do without art who, unaided by reason or deduction or by signs which have been observed and recorded, forecast the future while under the influence of mental excitement, or of some free and unrestrained emotion. This condition often occurs to men while dreaming and sometimes to persons who prophesy while in a frenzy — like Bacis of Boeotia, Epimenides of Crete and the Sibyl of Erythraea. In this latter class must be placed oracles — not oracles given by means of equalized lots — but those uttered under the impulse of divine inspiration; although divination by lot is not in itself to be despised, if it has the sanction of antiquity, as in the case of those lots which, according to tradition, sprang out of the earth; for in spite of everything, I am inclined to think that they may, under the power of God, be so drawn as to give an appropriate response. Men capable of correctly interpreting all these signs of the future seem to approach very near to the divine spirit of the gods whose wills they interpret, just as scholars do when they interpret the poets. 1.109. But let us bring the discussion back to the point from which it wandered. Assume that I can give no reason for any of the instances of divination which I have mentioned and that I can do no more than show that they did occur, is that not a sufficient answer to Epicurus and to Carneades? And what does it matter if, as between artificial and natural divination, the explanation of the former is easy and of the latter is somewhat hard? For the results of those artificial means of divination, by means of entrails, lightnings, portents, and astrology, have been the subject of observation for a long period of time. But in every field of inquiry great length of time employed in continued observation begets an extraordinary fund of knowledge, which may be acquired even without the intervention or inspiration of the gods, since repeated observation makes it clear what effect follows any given cause, and what sign precedes any given event. 1.117. Now there is a great problem as to how prophets and dreamers can see things, which, at the time, have no actual existence anywhere. But that question would be solved quite readily if we were to investigate certain other questions which demand consideration first. For the theory in regard to the nature of the gods, so clearly developed in the second book of your work on that subject, includes this whole question. If we maintain that theory we shall establish the very point which I am trying to make: namely, that there are gods; that they rule the universe by their foresight; and that they direct the affairs of men — not merely of men in the mass, but of each individual. If we succeed in holding that position — and for my part I think it impregnable — then surely it must follow that the gods give to men signs of coming events. [52] 1.118. But it seems necessary to settle the principle on which these signs depend. For, according to the Stoic doctrine, the gods are not directly responsible for every fissure in the liver or for every song of a bird; since, manifestly, that would not be seemly or proper in a god and furthermore is impossible. But, in the beginning, the universe was so created that certain results would be preceded by certain signs, which are given sometimes by entrails and by birds, sometimes by lightnings, by portents, and by stars, sometimes by dreams, and sometimes by utterances of persons in a frenzy. And these signs do not often deceive the persons who observe them properly. If prophecies, based on erroneous deductions and interpretations, turn out to be false, the fault is not chargeable to the signs but to the lack of skill in the interpreters.Assuming the proposition to be conceded that there is a divine power which pervades the lives of men, it is not hard to understand the principle directing those premonitory signs which we see come to pass. For it may be that the choice of a sacrificial victim is guided by an intelligent force, which is diffused throughout the universe; or, it may be that at the moment when the sacrifice is offered, a change in the vitals occurs and something is added or taken away; for many things are added to, changed, or diminished in an instant of time.
4. Cicero, On Fate, 14 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
antipater Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
astrology Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615; Frede and Laks, Traditions of Theology: Studies in Hellenistic Theology, its Background and Aftermath (2001) 267
cause Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
chaldeans Frede and Laks, Traditions of Theology: Studies in Hellenistic Theology, its Background and Aftermath (2001) 267
chance Wynne, Horace and the Gift Economy of Patronage (2019) 230
conjecture Wynne, Horace and the Gift Economy of Patronage (2019) 195
denyer, n. Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
diogenes of babylon Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
divination, artificial Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
divination, natural Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
divination Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
episteme Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
fate Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
god Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
heroes' Wynne, Horace and the Gift Economy of Patronage (2019) 195
marcus (character of div.) Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
omens Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
plato Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
posidonius Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
providence Bowen and Rochberg, Hellenistic Astronomy: The Science in its contexts (2020) 615
pyrrho Frede and Laks, Traditions of Theology: Studies in Hellenistic Theology, its Background and Aftermath (2001) 267
quintus (character of div.) Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
sallustius Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
science Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
signs Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
stars Frede and Laks, Traditions of Theology: Studies in Hellenistic Theology, its Background and Aftermath (2001) 267
stoicism, on divination Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
stoicism Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21
tullius cicero, m., de diuinatione Santangelo, Roman Frugality: Modes of Moderation from the Archaic Age to the Early Empire and Beyond (2013) 21