Note 4Plato's Analysis of the Psyche

Note 4Plato's Analysis of the Psyche - P10F07Handout5...

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P10F07Handout5 Plato’s Analysis of the Psyche Plato's Analysis of the Human Psyche (pp. 129-38) And The uses he makes of it to define and defend the personal virtues (139-43) I. Plato divides or analyzes the human psyche into three psychic parts or faculties: Appetite, reason, and spirit, on the basis of a general principle and certain psychic facts. (pp. 132-138) The principle: "The same thing cannot act in two opposite ways or be in two opposite states at the same time, with respect to the same part of itself, and in relation to the same object." The psychic facts: psychic conflicts within the self: --- Having appetite for something (food, drink, or sex) and judging that one should not have it. --- Having appetite for some something (to see dead bodies) and being angry at oneself for desiring such a thing . --- Being angry at something and judging that one should not act on that anger. See Plato’s examples. Plato argues that the first conflict and the principle should lead us to divide the psyche into reason (the source of judgment and reasoning) and an appetitive psychic part (the source of physiological appetites ); the second to divide the psyche between appetite and spirit (the source of anger, pride, and shame, due to the competitive and aggressive nature of spirit ); and the third conflict to separate (not conflate) spirit and reason.
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