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Aristotle makes a distinction in Metaphysics Book 4, Chapter 2 between διαλεκτική, σοφιστική, and φιλοσοφία. [Met. Γ 2, 1004 b 17 sqq.] He says: “σοφιστική and διαλεκτική are concerned with the same issues as is φιλοσοφία,” [Met. Γ 2, 1004 b 22 sq.: περι μεν γαρ το αύτο γένος στρέφεται ή σοφιστική και ή διαλεκτική τη φιλοσοφία.] but φιλοσοφία distinguishes itself from both of them in its way of approaching these issues, namely, in the way it deals with the same object. It differs from διαλεκτική “in the mode of the possibility” [Met. Γ 2, 1004 b 24: τω τρόπω τής δυνάμεως.] to which it lays claim. “Διαλεκτική makes a mere attempt” [Met. Γ 2, 1004 b 25: εστι δε ή διαλεκτική πειραστική.] to ascertain that which could be meant by the λόγοι, a διαπορεύεσθαι τους λόγους, [Cf. Plato, Sophist 253 b 10.] as Plato says, a “running through” of that which could perhaps be meant. That is the sense of Greek dialectic. The δύναμις of διαλεκτική is, in contrast to philosophy, a limited one. Still, διαλεκτική is geared toward the matter, toward the laying out of that which is meant; as σοφιστική speaks about the same matter, “it appears” to be philosophy “but it is not.” [Met. Γ 2, 1004 b 26: φαινομένη, ούσα δ’ ου.] Indeed διαλεκτική is serious, but it is only the seriousness of an attempted investigation of what ultimately could be meant. In this sense, we are treating of philosophy in the mode of investigating what ultimately could be meant. What is decisive is that we come to a preliminary understanding of that which is meant by philosophy. [See Hs. p. 333 f.] [GA18:5-7]

Submitted on 25.07.2019 09:55
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