nous [nus, naʊs] n.
- 1.) Philosophy
- a.) Reason and knowledge as opposed to sense perception.
- b.) The rational part of the individual human soul.
- c.) The principle of the cosmic mind or soul responsible for the rational order of the cosmos.
- d.) In Stoicism, the equivalent of Logos.
- e.) In Neo-Platonism, the image of the absolute good, containing the cosmos of intelligible beings.
Etymology: Adoption of Greek νοῦς (the Attic contracted form of νόος, mind).
"Ah, think not, mistress! more true Dulness lies
In Folly's cap, than Wisdom's grave disguise;
Like buoys, that never sink into the flood,
On Learning's surface we but lie and nod.
Thine is the genuine head of many a house,
And much divinity without a nous."
The Dunciad, Alexander Pope, 1728)