Mar 4, 2010

What is the Difference Between Immanence and Transcendence?: A Visual Philosophy Primer

Look at the two following details from Raphael's mural "The School of Athens." In the first image, a depiction of Aristotle shows him thrusting his arm outward; while, in the latter picture, the figure of Plato points towards the heavens. What do these two images tell us about the interplay between what is at hand and what is out of reach?
Aristotle points his hand outward as a sign of immanence.




Plato points his index finger upward to the sky as a sign of transcendence.

credits:"The School of Athens." Raphael. The Yorck Project:10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei. DVD-ROM, 2002.ISBN 3936122202.

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