Soul Mind and Body: Plato

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  • Created by: ellie
  • Created on: 09-01-18 13:11
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  • Plato: Soul Mind and Body
    • Key Ideas
      • The SOUL is immaterial, and the real you. It is more important than the body!!! The soul enables us to have knowledge and is unchanging therefore immortal. It pre-existed in the world of the forms
        • "the soul is in the very likeness of the divine, and immortal, and intelligible, and uniform, and indissoluble, and unchangeable; and the body is in the very likeness of the human, and mortal, and unintelligible, and multiform, and dissoluble, and changeable."
      • The BODY is part of the empirical world so is subject to constant change, therefore cannot be a reliable guide to the truth. The body allows us to gain opinions via senses.
        • “The body is the source of endless trouble...is liable also to diseases...in fact as men say, takes away from us all power of thinking at all”
      • The soul is the focus of reason, whilst the body is focused of material, bodily desires. The soul desires to escape the trappings of the body as it is inferior and wants to return to the Realm of the Forms. So- bodily desires are inferior to spiritual desires/ desires based on reason.
      • The body is a prison for the soul which is liberated at death. The body distracts us from our real purpose: philosophical thought
      • Charioteer analogy: Plato compared the soul to a charioteer in charge of two horses with one being good and the other being badly behaved. This represented reason, spirit and appetite (desire)
        • Reason: The highest, most superior of the three elements. It allows us to gain knowledge, to distinguish from right and wrong, and to understand the forms
        • Spirit/emotion: The second element allows us to love and inspires courage but if it is left unchecked, we can become reckless and conceited
        • Appetite/desire: The most inferior element. It is necessary to encourage us to look after our bodies physical needs but if left unchecked it can cause us to drift into lives of hedonism and become little better than animals

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