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This shift from mythic to rational mentality can be characterized as a movement from Who and Why questions about the cosmos to What and How questions. This shift occurred in part as a side-effect of frustration with the irreconcilable conflict of answers to Who and Why questions that were encountered on a regular basis in the trading city of Milesia, where cosmogonic myths would have been swapped along with goods.
The Greeks were interested in the nature of the universe. What was it made out of How did it get there How does it stay in place How did it begin They asked these questions and they tried to answer them.The Pre-Socratics were the first theoretical philosophers in human history. They emerged in the 6th century b.c.e. in the Greek cities of Ionia. They were interested about the essential composition of nature and dissatisfied with earlier creation legends. The Ionians sought natural (physical) rather than religio-mythic (metaphysical) explanations for natural occurrences. They maintained that arbitrary and willful gods did not manipulate nature, and it wasn't governed by blind chance. Even though nature seemed chaotic, it was governed by principles of order - general laws that can be ascertained by the human mind. This marked the beginning of scientific thought.The Pre-Socratics wanted to find out what the universe was made of. They were looking for the primal or first substance of the universe. They did this by means of observation with the naked eye. They used induction rather than deduction. From observing particular occurrences they postulated general theories. They believed the universe to be simple and subject to nature's laws. They speculated on the building blocks of the universe.
Group of thinkers
"Presocratics" is a group of thinkers who expressed themselves in various dialect of Greek during the 500's and 400's BC, that is, before the time of Socrates and his disciple Plato. Most lived in the edge of the Greek world, in what's today the western coast of Turkey (Ionia) and the southern parts of Italy. One reason we can be misled into viewing the Presocratics as children is that their ideas are often presented in a inexperienced and confusing way. two important thinkers whom tradition opposed to each other: Heraclitus of Ephesus (in Ionia) (ca. 540-480 BC), and Parmenides of Elea (a town in southern Italy) (born ca. 539 BC). Both struggled with being, not-being, and that combination of both with which we are familiar: becoming. To get an idea of how they struggled, you should click on either name. Here we can only say: Heraclitus took change and becoming to be cyclical: for him Real, Eternal Being is precisely the chain of eternally recurrent cycles. Parmenides denied outright the possibility of thinking the concept not-being
Pythagoras was the source of a lesser stream of thought during this early period. Deeply religious, he and his followers formed mysterious mystery cults devoted to the rescue and cleansing of the soul. This was achieved by the attainment of wisdom, and in its pursuit they cultivated music, science and mathematics-especially mathematics in its cosmological applications. The cosmos for them was well-ordered, and it was well- ordered because it was a material expression of numbers and numerical ...Show more


They were the first philosophers of the West. They found a way to break out of the reigning mythic mentality and required to explain nature rationally by means of speculative principles of various kinds generated on the basis of critical observation of the world.The Presocratics (so-called because they precede the watershed figure of Socrates) were the first philosophers of the West…
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