De quantitate animae: The measure of the soul; Latin text, with English translation and notes by Augustine of Hippo; 1 edition; First published in. PDF | Augustine is commonly interpreted as endorsing an extramission theory of perception in De quantitate animae. A close examination of the text shows. DE QUANTITATE ANIMAE LIBER UNUS S. Aurelii Augustini OPERA OMNIA – editio latina > PL 32 > De Quantitate Animae liber unus.

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Evodius is persistently attracted to the idea that the soul extends throughout the body that it animates and hence must itself be extended.

It is because Evodius is walking back from a ahimae commitment, shared with the extramission theory, that this is properly regarded as a dialectical concession. Moreover, and importantly, justice is greater in value than the tree.

Then, as the diffusion of rays shining out into the open from tiny pupils of the eye, and belonging therefore to our body, in such a way that, although the things we see are placed at a distance, they are yet quick- ened by the soul, so, just as we are helped by their effusion in compre- hending place-spans, the memory too, because fe is somehow the light of time-spans, so far comprehends these time-spans as in its own way ot to can be projected.

The perceiver feels the wooden frame even though they are not in direct contact with it. Augustine, Saint, Bishop of Hippo Published: But this is the principle that drives ex- tramission theories as well. On the latter understanding, the object of sen- sory awareness is external, at least if we rule out cases of auto-affection—it is what affects the body from without.

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Augustinus Hipponensis – De Quantitate Animae liber unus

That is to say, Au- gustine has argued that just because something is incorporeal does not mean that it is less real or less valuable than something corporeal. Similarly, the soul possesses the power to conceive of incorporeal geometrical abstractions, and since only like may conceive of like, the soul itself must itself be incorporeal.

Recall, there, Evodius likens look- ing and seeing a distal object to touching it with a stick. If one perceives, one is acted upon.

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And yet it falls short of the extramission theory. Moreover, it was earlier De quantitate animae But what- ever is the nature of the power by which we discern through the eyes, certainly, whether it be rays or anything else, we cannot discern with the eyes that power itself; but qhantitate inquire into it with the mind, and if possible, understand this with the mind. Bodies are extended in quaantitate dimensions.

Augustine on active perception. Sermon 10; Hill38 Augustine is using the familiar tactile metaphor associated with extramission the- ories. Etienne Gilson thought quantitste The second passage involves the stick analogy that Alexander of Aphrodisias attributes to the Stoics in De anima 14 the Stoic analogy is discussed and criti- cized by Galen in De Placitis Quahtitate et Platonis 7.

Augustine will argue, in contrast, that the soul is inextended because it possesses powers that corporeal extended things lack. Tools Cite this Export citation file. Patrologia Latina, volume Thus by means of a stick one may feel the texture of a distant surface, or its hardness and rigidity. Geometricians draw cones which are formed from the intersection of the rays sent out through the eyes. Perhaps, like Philoponus, Augustine maintains that instantaneous action at a distance is only possible for incorporeal activity In de anima 9.


Chicago University Press, Chicago, Clark, quuantitate George Street, Edinburgh, Augustine understands corporeal light as the image, in the Pla- tonic sense, of the true spiritual light. The passive power to be affected where one is not conferred by the sensitive soul is similarly a power that no soulless body may possess.

But when it is pulled in, it does not altogether stop seeing distant objects, although, of course, it sees them more obscurely than when it focuses its gaze abimae them. However, these formal features are preserved in accounts given by thinkers that explicitly quanttiate the extramission theory.

Visu, inquam, porrecto in eum locum in quo es, video te ubi es: This clearly shows that quod patitur corpus or passio corporis are not schematic placeholders for a broadly Galenic physiology.

Extramission theories are motivated by an apparent need to be in contact with distant sense objects if the perceiver is to be aware of them. For Ani,ae, the illuminationist imagery captures the active outward phe- nomenology of looking and seeing even if the extramission theory provides a false causal model of perception.

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