No, not you.
This has to do with Plato's Eternal Forms. In the SYMPOSIUM, Diotima
relates to Socrates, as related to us in Socrates' speech at the climax
of the movement, that the Grandest Vision he had yet to see was that of
the Eternal Form of the Good Itself. What does this mean? One must
involve oneself with the admiration of the beauty of the carnal, the
fleshy beauty, first. Inevitable. With luck, one comes (to realize)
that the beauty you've seen, embodied incarnate as your lover, reflects
a much larger beauty that all bodies share. Therefore you grow to
appreciate the beauty of all bodies.
Diotima goes on to lead Socrates to understand that a few worthy
spirits understand that the beauty of all bodies can be much more
clearly apprehended if one appreciated the goodness of the principle
which established that those bodies would be beautiful. So here we make
a switch, two switches actually: One, from the beautiful to the good;
and two, from bodies (substantial) to abstract ideas/principles/laws
(insubstantial). Struggling to keep up with the Goddess, Socrates then
understood the beauty and goodness of no particular law, but the very
possibility of ANY law. Human laws and administrations are therefore
according to Plato to be admired. Any Discordian might argue with that,
but you gotta take the bad with the good. Right. Anyway, Diotima then
shows Socrates how to appreciate not the Law, but rather the Good-ness
which that Law pivots upon; this good-ness being the over-all welfare
that the Law is supposed to preserve, ideally.
However, the real kicker in the SYMPOSIUM is what really makes me
wonder if those Greek festivals in honor of the Wheat Goddess Persephone
weren't really based on some psychotropic vision the ruling class of
Ancient Greeks were having. They did, after all, yearly get together to
ingest a mixture of fermented wheat and rye and other ingredients calle
Kykerion. Why oughtn't Plato's Witless Principles, or Socrates' Inner
Voice of the God, have their origins in the same place as Connie's Last
Affair? Ahem. Excuse me.
And so on.
When we arrive, the Ultimate Vision for Socrates is that of the Good
Itself. That abstract concept, mistakenly taken as substantial by
generations afterwards, has caused more curious onlookers to waste their
lives bullshitting about nonsense than even Dobbs Himself, or this
newsgroup. But there is a catch: Plato's doctrine later established
that there are Forms for all things: The Form of the Perfect Chair, the
Perfect Hamburger, the Penultimate (Fill In the Blank). Hell, if he had
only beaten Jesus to the punch he might have even dreamed up the form of
God Itself, the Template from which all other Gods were cut. But one
thing bothers me. These forms presumably live in the realm of
mathematical truth. That means, no tangible existence in themselves,
only as instatiations of that which they represent: Chairs, Hamburgers,
(Fill in the blank)'s, gods. However, what of the Form of the Perfect
Unseen? Are not any of the many versions of the Unseen just as good as
the Unseen Itself? I mean, you can't see any of them anyway, what does
it matter if it is the Perfect Unseen or Not? ANY Unseen will do the
job. So what gives? Do not all of the Eternal Forms live in this wild
realm of mathematical truth, or are there different levels to the types
of Forms, and only abstracts like the Good or the Just get to live
there, while all the other forms enjoy some kind of mixed existence here
on Earth?? This has been puzzling me. I bet DynaSoar could clear this
up, and set me straight. But I bet that ten minutes later I would be
I'm thinking ... of bringing a box of butterflies to the X-Day Drill.
One day I'm gonna open the cage and set them all free, and we can spend
the afternoon chasing butterflies. Sound good?
I just wasted a half an hour of work typing this. Praise "Bob".
Keeping It Up,