Hierarchy of beings and the Neo-platonic tetrad Goodness, Being, Life, Mind in Byzantine Platonism
The influence of the Neoplatonic triad is quite clearly evident in the doctrines on the hierarchy of participating beings by Maximus and John of Damascus what is connected with the influence of Dionysius. As to the transcendent participated principles, the influence of this triad is actually not found in Maximus and John. At the same time, whereas Maximus‟ order of participating beings depends on Dionysius‟s order of the participating beings, John of Damascus in the relation to the hierarchy of participating beings follows the order of participated beings in Dionisius. Therefore, in this relation, the respective doctrine of Maximus shows the impact of the Neoplatonic triad along with the line of Gregory of Nyssa‟s teaching of the hierarchy of beings that stems from the Biblical/cosmogonic order of natural beings. This becomes apparent in the fact of presence of the level of the sensible in Maximus‟ hierarchy. This line is absent in the hierarchy of beings by John of Damascus.