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Philosophi … erraverunt (Spec. Univ. 1. 41) der Traktat De anima im Speculum universale des Radulfus Ardens

Ein bemerkenswertes beispiel für kritische rezeption der platonischen Seelenlehre in der Frühscholastik

Author: Tobias Janotta

In the late twelfth century Platonic philosophy is gaining more and more importance for western thought in general, in particular for Christian theology. As part of this “Renaissance of the twelfth century” a new perspective is emerging, focusing on the reality of man and nature. In this context the Speculum uniuersale of Radulfus Ardens is an interesting example, which has, however, hardly been investigated. In his opus (containing 14 books) Radulfus Ardens constructs a virtue-ethical framework, for the first time connecting the morality of man systematically with anthropological facts and psychology. Radulfus Ardens receives the Platonic theory of soul and criticizes it in order to integrate some of its elements into his ethical concept. His main concern is a holistic perspective on man. The aim of this essay is to present an Early Scholastic concept of soul theory by comparing the Platonic theory of soul with the explanations of Radulfus Ardens in the first book of his Speculum uniuersale. Thus, I try to shed light on an important phase of the reception of Plato in medieval western thought.

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