Goethe's Concept of the Daemonic: After the Ancients

This thread is going to be about a philosophical text on the concept of the daemonic. The title of the text is Goethe’s concept of the Daemonic: After the Ancients by Angus Nicholls. It’s an excellent book, because it’s not merely about Goethe’s concept of the daemon, but pretty much the entire history of it. The concept of the daemon originated in ancient Greece. It’s a nuanced philosophical/religious concept, but I believe it’s safe to say that, in general, it is defined as a spiritual mediator or sensibility between two realities, e.g., the divine realm and the Earthly realm. I will put in entries of passages from the text and a link to a free E-book download of it, below.



Diotima and the Daemon

Platonic eros and Lukács’s daemon

The Other of Technē : The Art of Poetry

Socratic Daimonion

The Daimonion, Kierkegaard and Subjectivity

Coleridge’s Daemonic Imagination:

Intellect (Nous) in Aristotle

The Daemon in Stoicism and Neo-Platonism:

Marcus Aurelius and the Daemon:

… reminds me of quantum physics … conflating noumenology with phenomenology.

A “demon”, “de-mon”, is merely anything that divides or separates the oneness or whole, the “mon-olith”. The serpent that tempts is the subtle proposition that it is okay to take a divergent path from actual rationality in order to satisfy a lust or longing. It is an ancient Hebrew and Hindu concept (embodied in Kundalini) although the epistemology is Latin.

The Daimonion as Genius: Johann Georg Hamann:

‘Seeking out patterns, but attempting to overcome historicity’, is at the crux of the genius behind Sorrows of Young Werther, it may then seem.It is recurrent pattern recognition, but linked variably, and with no signifiers. the question is, is there a purposive method here, or simply a contingency of co incidental connections?