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A Great Book Can Change Your Life

Philosophy and Literature For Your Life

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friendship

Sentenced to Love: Socrates and Athens

In Plato’s Alcibiades Socrates implies that knowledge of the good and the true depends on knowing yourself, Knowledge of yourself, however, depend on the friendship of another. We only know ourselves, Plato suggests, by knowing and understanding those who we love and... Continue Reading →

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Of Love and Justice: Plato’s Republic

At the beginning of the Republic, Socrates piques the interest of  the group of young men he is speaking with, suggesting that to know justice is to know the only way of living that is worthwhile.  However, as he begins... Continue Reading →

Plato’s Symposium: Love as Reconciliation

Diotima, in Plato's Symposium, says that love is our way of participating in immortality, for those in love give birth in beauty. Explaining herself to Socrates, Diotima says, "And in that way everything mortal is preserved, not, like the divine,... Continue Reading →

The Poetry of Love: Plato’s Symposium

In the Symposium, Socrates recounts what his teacher, Diotima, taught him about love. In her speech she indicates a relationship between the act of loving and the act of creation, or, as she says, of poetry. We all, she says, love... Continue Reading →

Piety, Justice and Love: Plato’s Euthyphro

A servant gets drunk and angry and kills a slave. Your father, wanting to bring the man to justice, sends someone to a prophet to ask about the proper course of action. In the meantime, he ties the servant up... Continue Reading →

Plato’s Theatetus: Becoming for Each Other

Left to my own devices at lunch time, I set a spoon on fire while making soup. Rather than panicking, I efficiently dunked the spoon in the soup and stirred. And now I have a master chef tip for improving... Continue Reading →

Plato and Talking Your Way to Health: The Soul Doctor

  (*Note: Since I originally published this post, I had a longish period of not feeling well. Living in a new city, I met lots of great people and maintained my friendships with those in other places.  And I kept... Continue Reading →

Barking for Beans: How to Be A Better Person

My dog, Tim, has the bad habit of barking whenever he goes outside. It doesn't really even matter if there is something to bark at. He just has to announce, rather loudly, his presence in the world.  To get his... Continue Reading →

Bearing a Burden: Dante Wants to Carry Your Bags

As much as Dante's Divine Comedy is about the power of romantic love (as it is for the sake of Beatrice that Dante is willing to go through all of the terror of Inferno and the arduous climb of Purgatory),... Continue Reading →

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