I’m going to start a series on philosophy just for kicks, because isn’t that what housewives are supposed to do? My husband just happened to have The Consequences of Ideas an Overview of Philosophy by RC Sproul sitting on his bookshelf and I’m going to listen to it and give short summaries for you. Both to help myself learn and to introduce you to philosophy also, but if you really want the good stuff you’ll have to buy the cds, they’re worth it, and my summaries are hardly touching the surface.
Thales is called the founder of Ancient Greek philosophy because he predicted a solar eclipse on May 28, 585 BC. He is one of the pre-Socratic philosophers.
Thales said the ultimate essence (stuff) of the universe is water and this is why. The questions being asked were what does being come from (what is stuff), what is life, and why do things move?
He noticed everything in his experience appeared in one of three forms: solids, liquids, and gases. No matter how diverse diversity is we can reduce it down to one of these three things. Water is the only substance that has the ability to exist in these three forms.
What is life? Where does it come from? All of life seems to require water, water seems to be necessary to life, then maybe it is the most basic substance to start life?
Where does motion come from, how do things start to move? Is there a substance that is self-propelled…has the ability to move itself? Thales concluded that water could do this also because he had seen it moving in streams, rivers, and oceans and there didn’t seem to be a source to the movement. Therefore, water has the ability to move.
This is why water is Thales basic explanation for being, for life, and for motion.
In Acts 17:26-28 when Paul was addressing Epicurian philosophers, he was speaking to the very philosophies they believed in. You’ll notice in verse 28 the words life, move, and being.
From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. 27 God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. 28 ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.‘ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’
Their philosophy was wrong! Just because some people are very intelligent does not mean that they have the right answers. Do not trust in the wisdom of this world, lean not on your own understandings but put your trust in Christ alone and He will give wisdom to whoever asks.