Plato_Gorgias_Callicles

Plato_Gorgias_Callicles - Plato Gorgias Cal. Tell me,...

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Plato Gorgias Cal. Tell me, Chaerephon, is Socrates in earnest, or is he joking? Chaer. I should say, Callicles, that he is in most profound earnest; but you may well ask him Cal. By the gods, and I will. Tell me, Socrates, are you in earnest, or only in jest? For if you are in earnest, and what you say is true, is not the whole of human life turned upside down; and are we not doing, as would appear, in everything the opposite of what we ought to be doing? Soc. O Callicles, if there were not some community of feelings among mankind, however varying in different persons-I mean to say, if every man's feelings were peculiar to himself and were not shared by the rest of his species-I do not see how we could ever communicate our impressions to one another. I make this remark because I perceive that you and I have a common feeling. For we are lovers both, and both of us have two loves apiece:-I am the lover of Alcibiades, the son of Cleinias-I and of philosophy; and you of the Athenian Demus, and of Demus the son of Pyrilampes. Now, I observe that you, with all your cleverness, do not venture to contradict your favourite in any word or opinion of his; but as he changes you change, backwards and forwards. When the Athenian Demus denies anything that you are saying in the assembly, you go over to his opinion; and you do the same with Demus, the fair young son of Pyrilampes. For you have not the power to resist the words and ideas of your loves; and is a person were to express surprise at the strangeness of what you say from time to time when under their influence, you would probably reply to him, if you were honest, that you cannot help saying what your loves say unless they are prevented; and that you can only be silent when they are. Now you must understand that my words are an echo too, and therefore you need not wonder at me; but if you want to silence me, silence philosophy, who is my love, for she is always telling me what I am telling you, my friend; neither is she capricious like my other love, for the son of Cleinias says one thing to-day and another thing to- morrow, but philosophy is always true. She is the teacher at whose words you are. now wondering, and you have heard her yourself. Her you must refute, and either show, as I was saying, that to do injustice and to escape punishment is not the worst of all evils; or, if you leave her word unrefuted, by the dog the god of Egypt, I declare, O Callicles, that Callicles will never be at one with himself, but that his whole life, will be a discord. And yet, my friend, I would rather that my lyre should be inharmonious, and that there should be no music in the chorus which I provided; aye, or that the whole world should be at odds with me, and oppose me, rather than that I myself should be at odds with myself, and contradict myself.
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Cal. O Socrates, you are a regular declaimer, and seem to be running riot in the argument. And now you are declaiming in this way because Polus has fallen into the same error himself of which he accused
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This note was uploaded on 02/25/2012 for the course 510 392 taught by Professor Maxlikin during the Spring '11 term at Rutgers.

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Plato_Gorgias_Callicles - Plato Gorgias Cal. Tell me,...

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