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The Metaphysical Principles of the Infinitesimal Calculus

Guenon, Rene

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ISBN 10: 090058808X / ISBN 13: 9780900588082
Published by Sophia Perennis, San Rafael, 2004
Condition: Fine Hardcover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Metaphysical Principles of the ...

Publisher: Sophia Perennis, San Rafael

Publication Date: 2004

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Fine

About this title

Synopsis:

Guénon's early and abiding interest in mathematics, like that of Plato, Pascal, Leibnitz, and many other metaphysicians of note, runs like a scarlet thread throughout his doctrinal studies. In this late text published just five years before his death, Guénon devotes an entire volume to questions regarding the nature of limits and the infinite with respect to the calculus both as a mathematical discipline and as symbolism for the initiatic path. This book therefore extends and complements the geometrical symbolism he employs in other works, especially The Symbolism of the Cross, The Multiple States of the Being, and Symbols of Sacred Science. According to Guénon, the concept 'infinite number' is a contradiction in terms. Infinity is a metaphysical concept at a higher level of reality than that of quantity, where all that can be expressed is the indefinite, not the infinite. But although quantity is the only level recognized by modern science, the numbers that express it also possess qualities, their quantitative aspect being merely their outer husk. Our reliance today on a mathematics of approximation and probability only further conceals the 'qualitative mathematics' of the ancient world, which comes to us most directly through the Pythagorean-Platonic tradition.

About the Author:

René Guénon (1886–1951) was one of the great luminaries of the twentieth century, whose critique of the modern world has stood fast against the shifting sands of intellectual fashion. His extensive writings, now finally available in English, are a providential treasure-trove for the modern seeker: while pointing ceaselessly to the perennial wisdom found in past cultures ranging from the Shamanistic to the Indian and Chinese, the Hellenic and Judaic, the Christian and Islamic, and including also Alchemy, Hermeticism, and other esoteric currents, they direct the reader also to the deepest level of religious praxis, emphasizing the need for affiliation with a revealed tradition even while acknowledging the final identity of all spiritual paths as they approach the summit of spiritual realization. René Guénon, of whom Jacob Needleman wrote in The Sword of Gnosis that ‘no other modern writer has so effectively communicated the absoluteness of truth,’ is gradually being recognized by deeper thinkers as one of the few who have truly penetrated the seductive veil of the modern age. As an expositor of pure metaphysics and its application to the science of symbols, Guénon is without peer; and his extraordinarily prescient critique of the modern world is attracting more and more attention among cultural commentators. Little known in the English-speaking world till the recent appearance of his Collected Works in translation, Guénon has nevertheless long been recognized as a veritable criterion of truth by a vanguard of remarkable writers who evince that rare combination: intellectuality and spirituality. After a lonely childhood, often interrupted by ill health, Guénon navigated the seductive half-truths of occultism toward a deeper, unified vision offering a way out from the confusion and fragmentation of our time. Regarded by leading scholars as the first truly authentic interpreter of many Eastern doctrines in the West, Guénon never tired, in face of the seemingly inexorable process of dissolution in the twentieth century, of pointing to the transcendent unity of all religious faiths and the abiding Truth that contains them all.

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