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Plato

"GREAT ANCIENT PHILOSOPHER"

91

Genius

by 4 Jurors

Plato (/ˈpleɪtoʊ/; Greek: Πλάτων, Plátōn, "broad";[2] 428/427 or 424/423 BC – 348/347 BC) was a philosopher in Classical Greece. He was also a mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the foundations of Western philosophy and science.

Plato's sophistication as a writer is evident in his Socratic dialogues; thirty-six dialogues and thirteen letters have been ascribed to him. Plato's writings have been published in several fashions; this has led to several conventions regarding the naming and referencing of Plato's texts. Plato's dialogues have been used to teach a range of subjects, including philosophy, logic, ethics, rhetoric, religion and mathematics. Plato is one of the most important founding figures in Western philosophy. [1]

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img Michael Gerandoy posted a review

Plato was a philosopher in Classical Greece and the founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world.

on October 11, 2016
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There is no doubt that Plato nowhere gives a coherent body of aesthetic theory, but he gives ideas, suggestive and illuminating hints more valuable than any formulated doctrine. His literary criticism, scattered and fragmentary as it is, is still of great value and significance. The value of Plato’s criticism and his originality may be summarised as follows :

1. "In his works, appears for the first time the conception of nemesis or imitation as the essential characteristic of all art"—(Atkins). All the arts are related in essence, for they allimitate nature ; here thus is the first attempt to correlate the arts. Further, he divides the arts into two : (a) the fine arts, and (b) the useful arts, as, for example, medicine, agriculture, etc.

2. Though, in general, Plato regards imitation as a mere servile copy of surface or superficial appearances, yet at places he advances a little further. “Alive as he was to an unseen reality existing behind the objects of sense, he conceivcd of an imitation of the ideal forms of that ,unseen world”—(Atkins) . Such imitation be associated with poetry of the highest kind ; a process which represented things as they ought to be, and not in their actuality. Thus we find hints in him of poetry being a creative process.

3. Similarly, he makes significant advance in his views on “inspiration”, when he regards it as an ecstatic power, a form of spiritual exaltation which sends the soul in quest of ideal beauty. It liberates the soul from the bondage of custom and convention, and carries man nearer to truth.

4. Poetry is inspiration, but it is also an art, and he breaks new grounds in laying down basic principles for its practice as an art. (a) The artist must take thought, i.e. he must select and organise his material. (b) He must have knowledge of the rules and techniques of his art. He must follow the law of order and restraint, and (c) Study, exercise and learning are essential. Thus the arts can be "taught,

5. He emphasises, for the first time, that organic unity is essential for success in all arts. He compares a work of art to a living organism, having a body, as well as a head and feet, with a middle and extremities, in perfect keeping with one another and the whole. He thus desires not only the unity and completeness that is provided by a suitable beginning, middle and end, but also a harmonious inter-relation of the different parts. Artistic unity means that no part should be changed or omitted without an injury to the whole work. He is the first to emphasise, the doctrine of artistic unity.

6. His classification of poetry into dithyrambic (lyric) epic and dramatic, on the basis of methods of narration followed by them, originated the classification of poetry into forms or styles.

7. He accepts the traditional 'pity' and 'fear' as the emotions proper to tragedy. Though he has not much to say about 'Catharsis' —indeed, he does not apply the term to tragedy at all—yet he hints at the process when he speaks of external agitation subdoing the agitation within (a homeopathic process) as when a crying child is rocked by the nurse, and is thus pacified.

8. “With his remarks on Comedy may be said to begin the theory of the ludicrous in antiquity”—(Atkins). When he says that the ludicrous is the outcome, to some extent, of defect, in friends, i.e. those with whom we are in sympathy, he hints at a profound truth, for true laughter can result only when we like the person exposed to ridicule. However, Plato is against excessive laughter on the ground that it leads to equally violent reactions.

9. As regards the function of poetry, he is definitely of the view that it is not merely the giving of pleasure, but the moulding of human character, the bringing out of the best that is latent in the human soul.

10. His ideals of poetic art are high. Poetry must be characterised by austerity, order and restraint. "He is thus the first to enunciate the classical ideals of artistic beauty"—(Atkins).

11. He is also the first to emphasise the value of decorum in art. He condemns incongruities of style, melody and rhythm, and also the ridiculous mixture of tragic and comic effects that were a feature of contemporary drama.

12. He lays down high standards for literary criticism. A critic must have courage, knowledge and wisdom, he must lead the many, and be not led by them. Tastes of the general public cannot determine literary standards.

on October 6, 2016
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Plato’s philosophy looks constantly backward, to what we were, or what we’ve lost, or to an original of which we are the pale imitation or copy. . . . Aristotle, by contrast, looks steadily forward, to what we can be rather than what we were. His outlook is by its nature optimistic: “The universe and everything in it is developing towards something continually better than what came before,” including ourselves. . . . In that sense, Aristotle is the first great advocate of progress—and Plato, creator of the vanished utopia Atlantis, the first great theorist of the idea of decline

on September 6, 2016
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The GREAT ANCIENT PHILOSOPHER, AUTHOR Founded modern theories and common ideas as we know it. And this was also when technology was young.

on August 22, 2016
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img Roni Lagnada posted a review

So, was Jesus as smart as Plato, or Socrates if you prefer, or Aristotle, Epicurus or a bunch of philosophers that predated him (some) by centuries? Is he as smart as a lot of philosophers that postdated him (Voltaire, Schopenhauer, Hume, or Russell)? Is there any reason to think him smarter or more profound than most dopers?

From what I have read of the bible I think whoever wrote Ecclesiastes was an exceptional thinker, Job less so, but I don’t see that with anything attributed to Jesus. Based on what’s in the gospels, what would we guess his IQ to be? I say maybe 110. Certainly he had enough charisma to attract a modest following while alive but this seems no better than David Koresh or Jim Jones. It seems they used similar tactics of appealing to the poor and societal outcasts, who one might reasonably assume were, for the most part, more gullible than average.

I see nothing with regards to Jesus’ dialogs to suggest he was any smarter or more divine than Koresh or Jones. Certainly nothing that would indicate divine wisdom or even mere human genius. More like just a regular preacher, who mostly parroted the parts of the Old Testament that he liked, added or emphasized the afterlife, and had a few other ideas that compared to mainstream Jews were somewhat different, but not amazing. He threw in some stories to emphasis his points but that doesn’t seem much different that what other preachers and public speakers do all the time. It just seems like posterity was disproportionately kind to him.

From what I have read of the philosophers I listed in the first paragraph, I am often amazed by their brilliance, sure they had errors a plenty, particularly the older ones, but their thought processes, reasonings and many of their conclusions were often remarkable. With Jesus I just don’t get that. Rather, Jesus sounds like just another preacher telling us to love god, sometimes claiming to be god, and sometimes claiming not to be. Sometimes saying to follow the OT law and sometimes saying you don’t have to, telling parables that sometimes make sense and sometimes don’t. Promoting morals that even the most beloved liberal Christians on this board have admitted they don’t agree with, and in practice often prefer to follow a moral code that seems more in line with modern day secular humanism than it does with the words of Jesus. Jesus often called god loving, but described him as a beast. He saved a woman from being stoned but seems to have condemned most of humanity to hellfire. I really don’t see anything that would lead me to think it likely he had godly intelligence. 

on August 19, 2016

Kavler Cole No.

Willie G. Broadwater Jesus was smart and extremely wise. Otherwise he couldn't have sold himself as the Son of God and people wouldn't have believed him.

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Set the stage for Western metaphysics for the next 2500 years or so. Only Kant comes close to Plato's significance. Founded modern theories and common ideas as we know it. And this was also when technology was young, Platonic love is not yet dead.

on July 23, 2016
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Plato

GREAT ANCIENT PHILOSOPHER
Book rating: 91.3 out of 100 with 4 ratings
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