Some philosophers , absorbed in mathematics , a science which demands a great amount of abstract thought , became the protagonists of an idealist trend in philosophy . They used mathematics to construct various idealistic concepts ; thus , they evolved the ” magic ” of numbers . Pythagoras and his followers ( 6th century B.C. ) were the first idealist – philosophers . They imbued figures and mathematical concepts with mystical qualities . According to their beliefs , the number ” 1 ” stood for evil , ” 2 ” stood for good , ” 10 ” was perfection , etc. Representatives of the idealist school in the city of Eleia , a Greek coldhy in Southern Italy , attempted to prove the immobility of all matter .