Philosophy Plato Lived a Century After Pythagoras Term Paper

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Philosophy

Plato lived a century after Pythagoras, though he also studied the idea of the Pythagoreans and accepted some, notably in terms of their ideas on mathematics. Plato has been considered a disciple of Pythagoras, but he should not be seen as a Pythagorean because he followed his own thought processes and developed his own view of the nature of the world. Plato learned about logic and ethics from his direct teacher, Socrates, who would also question much of what the Pythagoreans accepted.

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The idea of the eternal forms is one of those concepts Plato either developed himself or adapted from Socrates, for it is not always possible to tell where Socrates ends and Plato begins in the dialogues. In examining the world and the relationship of the human mind to the world, Plato found that ideas, as he used the term, are not only something in human consciousness but something outside it as well. Platonic Ideas are objective and do not depend on human thought but exist entirely in their own right. They are perfect patterns that exist in the very nature of things. Such an idea is not just a human idea but the idea of the universe itself. It is an ideal that can be expressed externally in concrete form or internally as a concept in the mind. The Idea is the foundation of reality. Plato is classified as an idealist in his philosophy, basing his view of the world on the idea that there are forms embodying this world in a state of perfection and that what we perceive in this world are only shadows of the ideal. Central to Plato's thought is the power of reason to reveal the intelligibility and order governing the changing world of appearance, with the purpose of creating, at both the political and the individual level, a harmonious and happy life.

Term Paper on Philosophy Plato Lived a Century After Pythagoras, Assignment

The way Plato adopted Pythagorean ideas for his eternal forms came in the idea of numerology, with the number Two represented the world of the eternal forms, a world of duality in which there is an Ideal world and a world of the sense, only the latter of which can be accessed directly, while the former is only accessed through philosophy.

The ancient Greeks considered the nature of the universe and whether it was permanent or not. Heraclitus stated that it was not possible to step into the same river twice, thus indicating his belief in the prevalence of change all around. Heraclitus believed that stability was an illusion. Parmenides thought that motion was an illusion. Plato offered a compromise in his view of a dual world, one unstable and transient and the other permanent and unchanging.

Protagoras tried to explain the ideas of the human mind "psycho-genetically," declaring that the entire psychical life of the human being was such that it consisted only in perceptions. This was a form of sensualism, and Protagoras believed that the world could only be perceived through the senses. This was also related to ideas of motion, and… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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