demiurge


demiurge
demiurgeous /dem'ee err"jeuhs/, demiurgic, demiurgical, adj.demiurgically, adv.
/dem"ee errj'/, n.
1. Philos.
a. Platonism. the artificer of the world.
b. (in the Gnostic and certain other systems) a supernatural being imagined as creating or fashioning the world in subordination to the Supreme Being, and sometimes regarded as the originator of evil.
2. (in many states of ancient Greece) a public official or magistrate.
[1590-1600; < Gk demiourgós a worker for the people, skilled worker, equiv. to démio(s) of the people (deriv. of dêmos the people) + -ergos a worker, deriv. of érgon work, with oe > ou]

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Subordinate god who shapes and arranges the physical world.

In his dialogue Timaeus, Plato identified the Demiurge as the force that fashioned the world from the preexisting materials of chaos. In Gnosticism of the early Christian era, the Demiurge is regarded as an inferior deity who had created the imperfect, material world and who belonged to the forces of evil opposing the supreme God of goodness.

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Greek  Dēmiourgos (“public worker”),  plural  Demiourgoi,  

      in philosophy, a subordinate god who fashions and arranges the physical world to make it conform to a rational and eternal ideal. Plato adapted the term, which in ancient Greece had originally been the ordinary word for “craftsman,” or “artisan” (broadly interpreted to include not only manual workers but also heralds, soothsayers, and physicians), and which in the 5th century BC had come to designate certain magistrates or elected officials.

      Plato used the term in the dialog Timaeus, an exposition of cosmology in which the Demiurge is the agent who takes the preexisting materials of chaos, arranges them according to the models of eternal forms, and produces all the physical things of the world, including human bodies. The Demiurge is sometimes thought of as the Platonic personification of active reason. The term was later adopted by some of the Gnostics, who, in their dualistic worldview, saw the Demiurge as one of the forces of evil, who was responsible for the creation of the despised material world and was wholly alien to the supreme God of goodness.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • DÉMIURGE — La notion de démiurge revient à penser la réalité comme une création, puis de réduire celle ci à une fabrication. L’histoire des civilisations et la continuité des traditions culturelles montrent que le thème du démiurge est largement réparti et… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Demiurge — • The word means literally a public worker, demioergós, demiourgós, and was originally used to designate any craftsman plying his craft or trade for the use of the public. Soon, however, technítes and other words began to be used to designate the …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Demiurge — Démiurge Le démiurge, ou le créateur, est la déité responsable de la création de l univers physique dans diverses cosmogonies. On attribue à Platon[1] la première mention du démiurge, qu il définit comme le dieu organisateur qui créa le monde à… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Demiurge — Dem i*urge, n. [Gr. dhmioyrgo s a worker for the people, a workman, especially the maker of the world, the Creator; dh mios belonging to the people (fr. dh^mos the people) + e rgon a work.] 1. (Gr. Antiq.) The chief magistrate in some of the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • demiurge — 1670s, from Latinized form of Gk. demiourgos, lit. public or skilled worker (from demos common people + ergos work ). The title of a magistrate in some Peloponnesian city states and the Achæan League; taken in Platonic philosophy as a name for… …   Etymology dictionary

  • demiurge — [dem′ē ʉrj΄] n. [Gr dēmiourgos, one who works for the people, skilled workman, creator < dēmios, belonging to the people < demos, the people: see DEMOCRACY) + ergos, worker (see WORK)] 1. [often D ] a) in Platonism, a deity or creative… …   English World dictionary

  • Demiurge — Part of a series on God General conceptions …   Wikipedia

  • Démiurge — Le démiurge, ou le créateur, est la déité responsable de la création de l univers physique dans diverses cosmogonies. Le mot vient du grec δημιουργός, démiourgos, formé de « démos », signifiant « gens du commun » et de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • demiurge — noun Something (as an institution, idea, or individual) conceived as an autonomous creative force or decisive power. that too was a gain in spiritual balance, provided the machine was not conceived as a demiurge that ruled all other human needs …   Wiktionary

  • Demiurge — noun a) The subordinate being that fashions the perceptible world in the light of eternal ideas. For the rest, we meet in the Demiurge of the Valentinians all the traits of the world god with which we have by now become familiar and can therefore …   Wiktionary


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