• Amity
    233
    I would say classifying will power as an energy thing dismisses it's complexity.LuckilyDefinitive

    Yes. We have had quite an interesting discussion from various perspectives. A good summary might be useful at some point.
    So, what is your view of 'willpower' both as a concept and how it operates in life ?
    How do you understand it ?
    Thanks.
  • Valentinus
    308

    I wonder if you can show me any examples. I am interested in reading the Republic.
    Also fascinating piece of serendipity that we both just talked of 'diagnosis'.
    Amity

    I thought about different passages to quote but the quality I am singling out is a way to hear what is being said more than a thesis. I argued for a thesis in my previous citations because my interpretation was challenged. Fair enough. But I am more interested in the listening part of my own idea than ruling out other readings.

    Rather than prove something, let me suggest the following.

    Books 8 and 9 of the Republic address the tyrannical soul, both as something created by certain conditions and what being that kind of thing is like on the level of the individual. Socrates treats the emergence of the tyrant as a product of the Demos and that exposition fits with the "city of words" model that claims the Demos needs to be saved from itself. While reading Book 8, note how the argument is built upon the relationship between father and son. The political is tied with the most intimate relationship of parenting. (leaving aside, for the moment, the glaring lack of any recognition of the other parent).

    In parallel to this idea, there are many places where Socrates criticized the plutocracy and much of it happened in fairly subtle ways but also became challenges of the kind that became an argument. One example can be found in Gorgias, especially starting around 517. So, I offer the following from Socrates at 521:
    "Socrates: Then distinguish for me what kind of care for the city you recommend to me , that of doing battle with the Athenians, like a doctor, to make them as good as possible, or to serve and minister to their pleasures? Tell me the truth, Callicles, for it is only fair that, as you spoke your mind frankly to me at first, you should continue to say what you think. And so speak up truly and bravely now.
    Callicles: I say then, to serve and minister.
    Socrates: Then you invite me to play the flatterer?
    Callicles: Yes, if you prefer the most offensive term, for if you do not.....
    Socrates: Please do not say what you have said so often---that anyone who wishes will slay me, only for me to repeat that, once he has robbed me, he will not know what to do with his spoil, but even as he robbed me unjustly, so too he will make an unjust use of it, and if unjust, shameful, and if shameful, wicked."

    Translated by W.D. Woodhead

    Anyway, this level of intimidation is also about fathers and sons. It is presented differently than the descriptions in Book 8 of the Republic. But it does connect to why Thrasymachus showed up at a rich man's party.
  • Amity
    233
    Backtracking a little, I see that my question disturbed the flow of your conversation with Fooloso4. From your earlier reply to him:

    In any case, it is rare to find metaphor and mythology mixed freely with observations of what "is" as is done with such abandon in the Republic. I don't think the "noble lie" applies to all the observations made in the Republic. But it influences it in every place.
    There are so many indictments of character made in varying levels of subtlety that make me think I am not just being sold a bill of goods but am reading a diagnosis.
    6 days ago
    Valentinus
    I wonder if you can show me any examples [ edit: of bolded part ]. I am interested in reading the Republic.
    — Amity

    I thought about different passages to quote but the quality I am singling out is a way to hear what is being said more than a thesis. I argued for a thesis in my previous citations because my interpretation was challenged. Fair enough. But I am more interested in the listening part of my own idea than ruling out other readings.
    Valentinus


    Thanks for taking time and trouble to find the part which would help me understand what you were meaning.The following is most helpful. I will take time out now to read.

    'Books 8 and 9 of the Republic address the tyrannical soul, both as something created by certain conditions and what being that kind of thing is like on the level of the individual. Socrates treats the emergence of the tyrant as a product of the Demos and that exposition fits with the "city of words" model that claims the Demos needs to be saved from itself. While reading Book 8, note how the argument is built upon the relationship between father and son. The political is tied with the most intimate relationship of parenting. (leaving aside, for the moment, the glaring lack of any recognition of the other parent).

    In parallel to this idea, there are many places where Socrates criticized the plutocracy and much of it happened in fairly subtle ways but also became challenges of the kind that became an argument. One example can be found in Gorgias, especially starting around 517. So, I offer the following from Socrates at 521...'
  • Amity
    233
    At the risk of getting even more off topic. [ anyone able to connect the dots between willpower, will, the soul and Socrates ? ] - I am concerned that I didn't acknowledge my confusion in my response to Valentinus. I really didn't get the following:

    Valentinus:
    ' I thought about different passages to quote but the quality I am singling out is a way to hear what is being said more than a thesis. I argued for a thesis in my previous citations because my interpretation was challenged. Fair enough. But I am more interested in the listening part of my own idea than ruling out other readings.'

    I understand that there are many different translations and interpretations of Plato. Ways of reading.

    From the above, how does one 'hear what is being said' ( an evocative reading ?) without there being some kind of understanding of meaning ? So already there is some kind of a mental 'thesis' not necessarily to be proven, especially if subjective in nature. A theory. A view.

    So, one might 'hear' a 'level of intimidation' and then make some references to the relationship between father and son. No doubt there are many ways this can be understood or spun. But what anyone 'hears'
    or 'sees', regarding any connections, should be made explicit - that is a 'thesis' presented.
    It isn't a matter of being more interested in one than the other. It's not either/or...but both.

    That is my take on it.
    An interesting aside to the discussion.
  • Valentinus
    308
    But what anyone 'hears'
    or 'sees', regarding any connections, should be made explicit - that is a 'thesis' presented.
    Amity

    Your point is well taken. My reluctance is not an unwillingness to explain how I understand the writing. I just want to encourage reading without already having the topic bracketed between possible interpretations. There are all kinds of ways of reading and I believe it is helpful to learn about them. But I also think it is important to wrestle with works by yourself. Approaching it that way is different from checking if you agree with opinions already expressed by others before you read it. So, suggesting to take note of the interpersonal element in dialogues, both in the topics discussed and the interlocutors discussing stuff is a part of my "interpretation" but you have the opportunity to see it a different way. Many have.

    At the risk of getting even more off topic. [ anyone able to connect the dots between willpower, will, the soul and Socrates ? ]Amity

    Well, this is why I brought up the topic of thumos in the previous discussion. The closest parallel I can find between how it was discussed back then and later on is related to the experience of getting really pissed off.
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