n Filosofia Theoretica: Journal of African Philosophy, Culture and Religions - The quest for the nature of being in African philosophy




The fundamental question within the parameters of enquiry in metaphysics has been on the nature of being (Kanu, 2012a). It is one that has remained evergreen right from the Pre-Socratic period to the Contemporary Era (Andre, 2005). This enquiry was set in an articulated motion by Parmenides when he argued that whatever is, is being. He further said that being is one, eternal and unchanging, meaning that whatever changes is not being (Omoregbe, 2002). This notwithstanding, Heraclitus of Ephesus was chiefly famous in antiquity for his doctrine that everything is in a state of flux, as such, being is characterised by flux (Betrand, 1975). Plato, while disagreeing with Heraclitus on his doctrine of flux, agrees with Parmenides that reality is eternal and unchanging, however differs from Parmenides in arguing that being is multiple rather than one; and these are the forms in the Platonic World of Forms. Aristotle who defines Metaphysics as the study of 'being qua being' identifies being with the divine or deity, it is therefore not surprising that in Aristotle, Metaphysics at some point becomes theological (Kanu, 2013).


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