PHILOSOPHY - Plato - YouTube - Deepstash
  • Born in Athens in 428 B.C.E, Plato was the world's first true and probably the greatest philosopher. 
  • He devoted his life to one goal: helping people to reach a state of what he termed: Eudaimonia or fulfillment. 
  • He wrote 36 dialogues: beautifully crafted scripts of imaginary discussions in which Socrates is always allocated a starring role. 
  • He had four big ideas for making life more fulfilled. 

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  • Sometimes we just go along with 'Doxa' or popular opinions. 
  • Plato showed this common sense to be riddled with errors, prejudice, and superstition. "Fame is great", "Follow your heart", "Money is the key to have a good life". 
  • Popular opinions edge us towards wrong values, careers, and relationships. 
  • The key is to know yourself. Subject your ideas to examination rather than acting on your impulse. This kind of examination is called a Socratic discussion.
  • If you strengthen your self-knowledge you don't get so pulled around by feelings. 

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plato

Thinking: the talking of soul with itself

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Plato says: "True love is admiration." 

  • The person you get together with should have very good qualities that you yourself lack.  
  • By getting close to this person, you can become a little like they are. 
  • The right person for us helps us grow to our full potential. 
  • In a relationship, a couple shouldn't love exactly as they are right now. They should be committed to educating each other- and enduring the stormy passages this inevitably involves. 

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"Why do we like beautiful things?", Plato asked. 

  • We find things beautiful when we unconsciously sense in them the qualities we need but are missing in our lives. Gentleness. Harmony. Peace. Balance. 
  • Thus, they have a very important function. They help to educate our souls. 
  • Ugliness does the opposite. It parades dangerous and damaged characteristics in front of us. It makes it harder to attain good values. 
  • Plato sees art as therapeutic. It is the duty of artists to help us live a good life.

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Plato wanted to know: how a society could get better at producing not military power but fulfilled people? 

  • Athenian society was very focused on the rich and sports celebrities. Plato wasn't impressed: It really matters who we admire, because that influences our outlook, ideas, and conduct.
  • Plato wanted to replace celebrities with "Guardians" who were ideally wise and good people and could be the model for everyone's development.

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  • Plato wanted to end democracy in Athens. He observed how few people think properly before they vote and therefor we get very substandard rulers. 
  • He didn't want to replace democracy with dictatorship; but he wanted to prevent people from voting until they had started to think rationally. That is, until they became philosophers. 
  • His ultimate goal was that politicians should become philosophers. 

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Plato

The world will not be right until kings become philosophers or philosophers kings.

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