Mor Segev presents a plausible and powerfully argued resolution to a fundamental problem regarding Aristotle's attitude toward traditional Greek religion. On one hand, Aristotle maintains that anthropomorphic depictions of the gods play a positive and in fact essential role in the state. On the other hand, he claims that these depictions are false, and in some cases pernicious; for example, contrary to the poets' lies, the gods are literally incapable of jealousy. But if so, why does he nonetheless propose that the ideal state must preserve traditional religious practices and institutions? More generally, how are we to understand the conservative attitude Aristotle sometimes expresses toward traditional religion within the context of his metaphysical view of god as Prime Mover, whose absolute self-sufficiency precludes any need (or ability) to deliberate and any concern for (or awareness of) particular human beings?

Segev responds by noting first...

You do not currently have access to this content.