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A Look At Plato And Why He Was A Classical Writer

564 words - 3 pages

Plato in a Classical WorldIn our times, we often look back and compare the present against the past. One of the areas that we tend to do this with is philosophy. We can currently try and generalize the two types of philosophy into two categories: Classical and Romantic. Born on 428 B.C., Plato was one of the most influential Classical writers of all time. Plato can be said to be a classical thinker in its most pure form.One of the most important questions that Plato was seeking an answer to was "How and why is the human being to be a good human? ". Plato was most concerned with humans in general. He would not have looked at one person, studied that person, and derived his conclusion. He would have instead looked ...view middle of the document...

It is believed that Socrates, as well as Plato, thought that an universal truth could be reached by thinking alone. All that was needed to reach answers was a systematic way of thinking. Plato would have never studied the human body, or the biology of a plant. Instead, he was interested in using the capacity of this mind in thinking to discover the answers to the universe. He believed that through reason, we could achieve wisdom. Plato and Socrates considered wisdom as the most central virtue. A virtue in which everything worthwhile derives from and depends upon.Plato during his lifetime developed what is known to be the "World of Ideals and Forms". This theory described that in a separate place from earth, there was a place where the perfect forms and ideas were. This world was eternal and unchanging. The Justice Ideal, Good Ideal, and Beauty Ideal were all part of this greater world in which all ideas resided. The Form of nail, the Form of hair, and the Form of mud were also part of this world of forms. Its been said that Plato believed that "if a human can see it in his mind, it must exist in its perfect form/idea". This quest and belief of "perfect" is one of the characteristics of the Classical Period. The thinkers of the classical period were after perfection, order, and the idealism of the world.For Plato, the true being is independent of our sense experience and can only be known by reason. This can certainly describe the Classical Period, which has so greatly influenced our current philosophies. It was the time in which many of our current intellectual discoveries were made and the advancement of the human mind took place. Plato will always be thought of as an influential Classical thinker.

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