Plato’s “Symposium”: The Dramatic Trial of Love

Plato was a moralist. An ethicist. He was concerned with the primacy of action, of engagement, in a world that was deeply iconoclastic, barbarous, and savage. Love of wisdom allows for the creation of that space where ethical and loving life is possible. This means that eros must remain to any understanding of the self, world, and politeia. … Continue reading Plato’s “Symposium”: The Dramatic Trial of Love

Teachers and Influences: An Intellectual Autobiography

I am sometimes asked who has influenced my thinking: “Who are among the biggest influences in your intellectual outlook”? This was a common question at Yale and remains a question I receive here in England as I work with Roger Scruton. Evidently that should giveaway an influence on me. I suppose there are different influences … Continue reading Teachers and Influences: An Intellectual Autobiography

Plato’s “Republic”: The Descent into Savagery and Tyranny

Plato’s Republic stands in contradistinction to Aristotle’s Politics, indeed, it stands in contradistinction to almost all other works of political philosophy because Plato never speaks in the dialogue.[1]  It would, therefore, be absurd to reach the conclusion that Plato’s dialogues teach us nothing because Plato is silent throughout his entire written corpus – giving way … Continue reading Plato’s “Republic”: The Descent into Savagery and Tyranny

Plato’s “Euthyphro”: The Death of Piety and the Triumph of the State

Plato’s Euthyphro is one of the more famous of the shorter dialogues.  Several of the major themes are brought up in the dialogue include theology, ethics, and filialism.  As such, we will briefly examine the major themes and their impact on philosophy and, by the end, we shall see how these seemingly unrelated issues are, in fact, … Continue reading Plato’s “Euthyphro”: The Death of Piety and the Triumph of the State

Plato’s “Phaedrus”: The Cosmic Drama of the Soul

Plato was a master story-teller, perhaps that is why Christians took so fondly to him as Jesus was also a master story-teller. While most of Plato’s famous allegories are contained in The Republic, one of the most famous of Plato’s allegories that escaped the confines of The Republic is the Allegory of the Chariot (or … Continue reading Plato’s “Phaedrus”: The Cosmic Drama of the Soul

Plato’s “Phaedo”: The Battle over the Soul and the Polis

The Phaedo is one of the more famous of the Platonic dialogues.  The dialogue concerns itself with the nature of the human soul and the afterlife. The dialogue contains the famous Affinity Argument, and Simmias’ response, in which the soul and body are linked together in a harmony like a Lyre.  We will explore the four … Continue reading Plato’s “Phaedo”: The Battle over the Soul and the Polis

Plato’s Allegory of the Cave: Tyranny and the Danger of Mass Society

The Allegory of the Cave is probably Plato’s most famous metaphorical story in all of his works and is certainly the most memorable moment in his Republic.  The Allegory of the Cave is doing many things for Plato, it is a commentary on humanity’s origo, it is a commentary on epistemology, it is a commentary … Continue reading Plato’s Allegory of the Cave: Tyranny and the Danger of Mass Society