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Dreams, like oracles, were occasionally employed for the conversion of infidels. An incident of the kind is related by Aelian, a writer who flourished early in the third century, and who is remarkable, even in that age, for his bigoted orthodoxy. A certain man named Euphronius, he tells us, whose delight was to study the blasphemous nonsense of Epicurus, fell very ill of consumption, and sought in vain for help from the skill of the physicians. He was already at death’s door, when, as a last resource, his friends placed him in the temple of Asclêpius. There he dreamed that a priest came to him and said, ‘This man’s only chance of salvation is to burn the impious books of Epicurus, knead the ashes up with wax, and use the mixture as a poultice for his chest and stomach.’ On awakening, he followed the divine prescription, was restored to health, and became a model of piety for the rest of his life. The same author gives us a striking instance of prayer answered, also redounding to the credit of Asclêpius, the object of whose favour is, however, on this occasion not a human being but a fighting-cock. The scene is laid at Tanagra, where the bird in question, having had his foot hurt, and evidently acting under the influence of divine inspiration, joins a choir who are singing the praises of Asclêpius, contributing his share to the sacred concert, and, to the best of his ability, keeping time with the other performers. ‘This he did, standing on one leg and stretching out the other, as if to show its pitiable condition. So he sang to his saviour as far as the strength of his voice would permit, and prayed that he might recover the use of his limb.’ The petition is granted,230 whereupon our hero claps his wings and struts about ‘with outstretched neck and nodding crest like a proud warrior, thus proclaiming the power of providence over irrational animals.’352秒速快乐十分手机投注平台它的 砰的 Abiding, doth abide most firmly fixed, It is evident that what Plotinus says about beauty and love was suggested by the well-known passages on the same subject in the Phaedrus and the Symposium. His analysis of aesthetic emotion has, however, a much more abstract and metaphysical character than that of his great model. The whole fiction of an antenatal existence is quietly let drop. What the sight of sensible beauty awakens in a philosophic soul is not the memory of an ideal beauty beheld in some other world, but the consciousness of its own idealising activity, the dominion which it exercises over unformed and fluctuating matter. And, in all probability, Plato meant no more than this—in fact he hints as much elsewhere,433—but he was not able or did not choose to express himself with such unmistakable clearness.
2分幸运28手机购彩网址到它 句立 We have this great advantage in dealing with Plato—that his philosophical writings have come down to us entire, while the thinkers who preceded him are known only through fragments and second-hand reports. Nor is the difference merely accidental. Plato was the creator of speculative literature, properly so called: he was the first and also the greatest artist that ever clothed abstract thought in language of appropriate majesty and splendour; and it is probably to their beauty of form that we owe the preservation of his writings. Rather unfortunately, however, along with the genuine works of the master, a certain number of pieces have been handed down to us under his name, of which some are almost universally admitted to be spurious, while the authenticity of others is a question on which the best scholars are still divided. In the absence of any very cogent external evidence, an immense amount of industry and learning has been expended on this subject, and the arguments employed on both sides sometimes make us doubt whether the reasoning powers of philologists are better developed than, according to Plato, were those of mathematicians in his time. The176 two extreme positions are occupied by Grote, who accepts the whole Alexandrian canon, and Krohn, who admits nothing but the Republic;115 while much more serious critics, such as Schaarschmidt, reject along with a mass of worthless compositions several Dialogues almost equal in interest and importance to those whose authenticity has never been doubted. The great historian of Greece seems to have been rather undiscriminating both in his scepticism and in his belief; and the exclusive importance which he attributed to contemporary testimony, or to what passed for such with him, may have unduly biassed his judgment in both directions. As it happens, the authority of the canon is much weaker than Grote imagined; but even granting his extreme contention, our view of Plato’s philosophy would not be seriously affected by it, for the pieces which are rejected by all other critics have no speculative importance whatever. The case would be far different were we to agree with those who impugn the genuineness of the Parmenides, the Sophist, the Statesman, the Philêbus, and the Laws; for these compositions mark a new departure in Platonism amounting to a complete transformation of its fundamental principles, which indeed is one of the reasons why their authenticity has been denied. Apart, however, from the numerous evidences of Platonic authorship furnished by the Dialogues themselves, as well as by the indirect references to them in Aristotle’s writings, it seems utterly incredible that a thinker scarcely, if at all, inferior to the master himself—as the supposed imitator must assuredly have been—should have consented to let his reasonings pass current under a false name, and that, too, the name of one whose teaching he in some respects controverted; while there is a further difficulty in assuming that his existence could pass unnoticed at a period marked by intense literary and philosophical activity. Readers who177 wish for fuller information on the subject will find in Zeller’s pages a careful and lucid digest of the whole controversy leading to a moderately conservative conclusion. Others will doubtless be content to accept Prof. Jowett’s verdict, that ‘on the whole not a sixteenth part of the writings which pass under the name of Plato, if we exclude the works rejected by the ancients themselves, can be fairly doubted by those who are willing to allow that a considerable change and growth may have taken place in his philosophy.’116 To which we may add that the Platonic dialogues, whether the work of one or more hands, and however widely differing among themselves, together represent a single phase of thought, and are appropriately studied as a connected series.
美国pc28手机投注网址上但 你放 From her our measures, weights, and numbers come, Again, he tells us that— The materialism of his dogmatic contemporaries placed them at a terrible disadvantage when the sceptical successor of Plato went on to show that eternal duration is incompatible with whatever we know about the constitution of corporeal substance; and this part of his argument applied as much to the Epicurean as to the Stoic religion.246 But even a spiritualistic monotheism is not safe from his dissolving criticism. According to Carneades, a god without senses has no experience of whatever pleasurable or painful feelings accompany sensation, and is therefore, to that extent, more ignorant than a man; while to suppose that he experiences painful sensations is the same as making him obnoxious to the diminished vitality and eventual death with which they are naturally associated. And, generally speaking, all sensation involves a modification of the sentient subject by an external object, a condition necessarily implying the destructibility of the former by the latter.247 So also, moral goodness is an essentially relative quality, inconceivable without the possibility of succumbing to temptation, which we cannot attribute to a perfect Being.248 In a word, whatever belongs to conscious life being relative and conditioned, personality is excluded from the absolute by its very definition.
二分幸运28手机购彩app下载安装一个 大陆 It will now be better understood whence arose the hostility of the Stoics to pleasure, and how they could speak of it in what seems such a paradoxical style. It was subjective feeling as opposed to objective law; it was relative, particular, and individual, as opposed to their formal standard of right; and it was continually drawing men away from their true nature by acting as a temptation to vice. Thus, probably for the last reason, Cleanthes could speak of pleasure as contrary to Nature; while less rigorous authorities regarded it as absolutely indifferent, being a consequence of natural actions, not an essential element in their performance. And when their opponents pointed to the universal desire for pleasure as a proof that it was the natural end of animated beings, the Stoics answered that what Nature had in view was not pleasure at all, but the preservation of life itself.48 350”
秒速六合彩手机投注app下载安装网址夺想 有后 Sweet tones are remembered not.’ There must, one would suppose, be some force in the Epicurean philosophy of death, for it has been endorsed by no less a thinker and observer than Shakspeare. To make the great dramatist responsible for every opinion uttered by one or other of his characters would, of course, be absurd; but when we find personages so different in other respects as Claudio, Hamlet, and Macbeth, agreeing in the sentiment that, apart from the prospect of a future judgment, there is nothing to appal us in the thought of death, we cannot avoid the inference that he is here making them the mouthpiece of his own convictions, even, as in Hamlet’s famous soliloquy, at the expense of every dramatic propriety. Nevertheless, the answer of humanity to such sophisms will always be that of Homer’s Achilles, ‘μ? δ? μοι θ?νατ?ν γε παρα?δα’—‘Talk me not fair of death!’ A very simple process of reasoning will make this clear. The love of life necessarily involves a constant use of precautions against its loss. The certainty of death means the certainty that these precautions shall one day prove unavailing; the consciousness of its near approach means the consciousness that they have actually failed. In both cases the result must be a sense of baffled or arrested effort, more or less feeble when it is imagined, more or less acute when it it is realised. But this diversion of the conscious energies from their accustomed channel, this turning back of the feelings on themselves, constitutes the essence of all emotion; and where the object of the arrested energies was to avert a danger, it constitutes the emotion of fear. Thus, by an inevitable law, the love of life has for its reverse side the dread of death. Now the love of life is guaranteed by the survival of the fittest; it must last as long as the human race, for91 without it the race could not last at all. If, as Epicurus urged, the supreme desirability of pleasure is proved by its being the universal object of pursuit among all species of animals,177 the supreme hatefulness of death is proved by an analogous experience; and we may be sure that, even if pessimism became the accepted faith, the darkened prospect would lead to no relaxation of our grasp on life. A similar mode of reasoning applies to the sorrow and anguish, mortis comites et funeris atri, from which the benevolent Roman poet would fain relieve us. For, among a social species, the instinct for preserving others is second only to the instinct of self-preservation, and frequently rises superior to it. Accordingly, the loss of those whom we love causes, and must always cause us, a double distress. There is, first, the simple pain due to the eternal loss of their society, a pain of which Lucretius takes no account. And, secondly, there is the arrest of all helpful activity on their behalf, the continual impulse to do something for them, coupled with the chilling consciousness that it is too late, that nothing more can be done. So strong, indeed, is this latter feeling that it often causes the loss of those whose existence was a burden to themselves and others, to be keenly felt, if only the survivors were accustomed, as a matter of duty, to care for them and to struggle against the disease from which they suffered. Philosophy may help to fill up the blanks thus created, by directing our thoughts to objects of perennial interest, and she may legitimately discourage the affectation or the fostering of affliction; but the blanks themselves she cannot explain away, without forfeiting all claim on our allegiance as the ultimate and incorruptible arbitress of truth.”
时间:2020-07-26 07:13:30  来源:本站原创

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