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Philosophy of Sciences

2014 year, number 4

An essential unity of the spiritual and the material in Galen’s theoretical and practical system. Part I

D. A. Balalykin
I. M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University, Moscow, Russia
Keywords: history of science, history of medicine, ancient natural science, the spiritual and the physical, substantial unity, Galen


By analyzing Galen’s «Quod animi mores corporis temperamenta sequantur» we study his views on the nature of human soul and the relation of the spiritual and the physical in a human body. The Roman physician thinks over a practical importance of one or another soul property for physical health. When reasoning, Galen rejects the opinion that an eternal soul stays in an inconstant body accidentally for it results in separation of spiritual and material essences which is inadmissible. He bases his analysis on the principles of the rational knowledge and intentionally limits his statements only to empirically proven facts. This work by Galen helps to grasp his theoretical and practical system.