The following paragraph introduces the term 'Logos' as used in the gospels and in ancient greek philosophy.
stands for the Logos
by whom everything was made according to the New Testament
of the Bible:
"In the beginning was the Logos, the Logos was with God and
the Logos was God. ... Through him all things came into
being, not one thing came into being except through
him...". (John 1,1 ff).
"Im Ursprung war der Logos, und der Logos war bei Gott, und Gott war der Logos. ... Alles ist durch Ihn geworden, und ohne Ihn ward nichts, auch nicht ein einzig geworden Ding." (Joh 1,1 ff)
The Greek word Logos is usually translated to
Word in English language bibles. The meaning of the
Greek word Logos is much more thrilling and richer
however, getting its meaning from contemporary Greek
philosophy. In that context Logos means something similiar
to 'Divine Reason'. The evangelist John, the author of the
fourth gospel, used the word Logos on purpose in the
context of the Greek culture in his time. It is a term that
cannot easily be translated into a single word in our
present day languages.
Meaning of the word Logos in Ancient Greek Philosophy
The following information is a summary of the article titled 'Logos'
by Glenn R. Murrow published in the Dictionary of Philosophy,
by Littlefield, Adams & Co. Patterson New Jersey, 1963.
Heraclitus ( 536 B.C. - 470 B.C.) refers to the Logos as cosmic reason which gives order and intelligibility to the world.
The Logos is seen as a reality analogous to the reason in
man that regulates all physical processes and is the source of all human law.
- The Stoics
The Stoics ( 308 B.C. - ) consider the world as a living unity, perfect in the adaptation of its parts to
one another and to the whole, and animated by an immanent and purposive reason.
As the creative source of this cosmic unity and perfection the world-reason is called
the 'logos spermatikos' (seminal reason).
- Philo of Alexandria
Philo of Alexandria ( 30 B.C. - 50 A.D.) considers the Logos as the immaterial instrument and even at times the
personal agency, through which the creative activity of the transcendent God is exerted upon
In the philosophy of Plotinus ( 205 A.D. - 270 ) the Logos appears as the creative and form-giving aspect
of Intelligence (Nous), the second of the three Hypostases.
The Greek philosopher Aristotle numbered his books by
using letters of the Greek alphabet. Book λ is the book about the "Unmoved
Mover" about the "First Mover" about the "First Cause",
about the Eternal Being. Book λ
constitutes the crowning
achievement of Aristotle's metaphysics.
See also OntoSimula, which is a computer
simulation of the core of Thomistic Metaphysics, which in
turn builds on Aristotle's Metaphysics.