Monad in Philosophy

Monad (from monas, “singularity” in turn from monos, “alone“) refers, in cosmogony, to the Supreme Being, divinity or the totality of all things. The concept was reportedly conceived by the Pythagoreans and may refer variously to a single source acting alone, or to an indivisible origin, or to both. The concept was later adopted by other philosophers, such as Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, who referred to the monad as an elementary particle. It had a geometric counterpart, which was debated and discussed contemporaneously by the same groups of people.

Halo Sun Circle Atmosphere Rays Mountains Nature

Sun rays

Historical background

According to Hippolytus, the worldview was inspired by the Pythagoreans, who called the first thing that came into existence the “monad”, which begat (bore) the dyad (from the Greek word for two), which begat the numbers, which begat the point, begetting lines or finiteness, etc. It meant divinity, the first being, or the totality of all beings, referring in cosmogony (creation theories) variously to source acting alone and/or an indivisible origin and equivalent comparators.

Pythagorean and Platonic philosophers like Plotinus and Porphyry condemned Gnosticism (see Neoplatonism and Gnosticism) for its treatment of the monad.

The monad, an ancient symbol for the metaphysical Absolute. Early science, particularly geometry and astrology and astronomy, was connected to the divine for most medieval scholars, and many believed that there was something intrinsically "divine" or "perfect" that could be found in circles.[1][2]

The monad, an ancient symbol for the metaphysical Absolute. Early science, particularly geometry and astrology and astronomy, was connected to the divine for most medieval scholars, and many believed that there was something intrinsically “divine” or “perfect” that could be found in circles.

Pythagorean concept

For the Pythagoreans, the generation of number series was related to objects of geometry as well as cosmogony. According to Diogenes Laërtius, from the monad evolved the dyad; from it numbers; from numbers, points; then lines, two-dimensional entities, three-dimensional entities, bodies, culminating in the four elements earth, water, fire and air, from which the rest of our world is built up.

Modern philosophy

The term monad was adopted from Greek philosophy by modern philosophers Giordano Bruno, Anne Conway, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (Monadology), John Dee, and others.

See also

Adapted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia