PHL 606 Lecture 3
Can you expect a heroin addict not to do heroin?
No, but you can expect the an addict to confront their addiction.
What causes addiction? What starts us of a habitual behaviour?
Emotional cause instead of chemical. A feeling of an escape from PAIN
(fear/anxiety). They tend to get hooked on it and it distract them from
the pain – analgesic.
Analgesic distracts you from your pain. You still have the pain but it
merely distracts from it.
That’s why we get addicted to things to distract us from the pain.
Addiction is something that distracts you from your pain.
How to deal with addiction – confront your addiction/pain. Addiction
relieves you from the need to confront your pain.
Ex. Working out. You go to the gym for the first time. You will feel soar
and not want to go back to the gym. Confront the hurting feeling and
work through the pain.
You want to change something you have to confront your pain.
Main addictions are not chemical. They are electronic. Not comfortable
with being around people. Being afraid of social interaction. The main
recipient of female calls is their mother.
Addictions are not healthy because you are hiding from yourself.
Serious – doesn’t mean solemn or angry. It means something
important is going on. We learn that serious is solemn/ angry from
parents. Being uncomfortable when laughing at a serious situation. Our
parents were wrong but makes us think its right.
All the men in her life disappointed her. It’s a tragedy. Too immature to
know where to look for love and too immature to love properly. She
looks to the heavens. She looks at the first man she sees because he
had bling. She can’t be alone. He ends up being a disappointment
despite his boyish good looks because he is also immature. He never
gives and just takes his pleasure even though it produces agony of his
partner from whom he takes. He is incapable of love. He is a predator
he is too immature to be anything but a predator. At least she is capable of love even though it’s immature. Brutes – incapable of love
just brutality. Zeus is at least smarter because he cares about his
allies. He is a child so she thinks she can play on his feelings and he
lets he go.
The gulf between love and sex cannot be filled before we have an
understanding of what love and sex is and taking more adult frame of
Hearing -> Remembering -> Obeying
Philosophy is about questioning and reasoning.
Alphabet history. Homer is composing … Theogony…
Produced by people known as Phoenicians from Lebanon (Tyre and
Sidon). Because of their location they are merchant people. High value
but low weight goods silk. Bought from China and sold to Greece and
Egypt. They are always in the hurry and they needed to write things
Greeks adopted the alphabet. First two letters Alpha Beta.
The alphabet breaks down language into atoms. Fewer atoms then
A system that provides ability to sound the words out. Decoding.
You don’t have to remember what is said. You write it down and keep
Record important info in a non memorable language (poem is a
This is called a continuous prose.
You are never going to learn to write hikoo when texting.
Poetry is language of write, memorable speech.
Meaning is shaped to sound. Is it preserving the meaning or the
Poetic licence – makes the story sound better.
Memory but loose descriptive accuracy.
Memory – drama, but looses in logic. Drama tends to drown out logic.
Churchill – important speech but is not logical. His proof is repeating
the conclusion Circular argument – repetition of conclusion. No new
info. There is drama. “We will fight them”
He is gearing up for a monumental conflict so it’s dramatic.
Poems are personal – love, security, conflict, victory, defeat. Doesn’t support the impersonal info. Ex. Trigonometry – no drama in
Prose – sound is shaped to meaning.
Loose memory but gain descriptive accuracy.
Make it dramatic to make
Subject – noun. The thing that the proposition is about.
Predicate – what is true of the thing.
Ex. James is an asshat.
Subject – subject
Predicate – asshat
Is – james is identified with an asshat. Truth.
Three little pigs – the story is destored it. Not that it cant be true. The
issue is the drama – the memorability. Proposition is whats important is
1. Hank is taller than steve
2. steve is taller than james
3. james is taller than hank.
Each suggests that something is true. The combination suggests that
its not logical it jumps out at you and it tells you that its just not right.
Myths have logical errors. Its Gods way of talking. But Gods are always
right. So myths are not Gods talking.
Response to myths not being correct.
Symbolic reaction – if there are errors in the myths. The readers fault
because they are not reading the myths right.
The text in the middle – Talmud.
Margins – Rashi – this is the proper way to read the text which makes
the text reasonable.
Literally response – beauty of the text.
One society that had a different response – Ancient Greeks – the faults
are with the texts. First philosophers. Errors in logic errors in fact – its
wrong. Ancient Greece is not a unified kingdom. Independent people.
A logic coherent explanation that doesn’t have error in it.
The Symposium – a drinking party.
The speeches are about myths. Oral response, symbolic, literal, socerty
– a philosophical response to speech.
Phaedrus – oral. Referring to Theogony. He doesn’t explicitly say it
because they all know. The gifts and good that Eros imposes on
humans are best. The best gift is virtue by motivating us to virtue.
Makes us desire beauty. A beauty that would attract a male would be
the beauty of another male. Possess the beauty of his beloved is a
beautiful male. Mind lover. How to possess you beloved whole? Present
something he wants by presenting yourself as something they want y
making yourself beautiful that engages in beautiful thoughts and
actions – virtues. A person who is virtuous – possess virtues. The more
we love the more virtues we will be. Where there is great love/virtue
there is great virtue/love. Provides us with evidence to support that.
Draws examples from the myths. Historic evidence. Examples:
Orpheus, Alcestis, Achilles.
Orphauous – goes to the underworld to rescue his dead wife. He risks
much but not everything.
Alcestis – wife agrees to die for his to live forever. She wins much and
Achilles –lover is killed, Gods tells him that if he kills the killer, if he
does he will die Gives up the most to get the least. His love is the
The stories are used on the assumption that they are historically true.
No question that there is anything wrong with the stories. They teach
Pausanius - symbolic
Eryximachus – symbolic. Physician.
Aristophanes – literary. Comedian. Makes fun of Erixmachus.
Agathon – literary. Tragedist.
Socrates – philosophical, didn’t teach or write anything. Corruptibly
Plato was a student of Socrates.
Response to Eros – desire for beauty. Oldest of the Gods. First born of
Agothon is celebrated. Agothon means beauty.
Celebrating his triumph of his tragedy Encomiums – praising the living. We don’t do that anymore. Marriage
ceremony – best man listing the good things about the bride. Eulogy –
praising the dead.
Gayla is the oldest but she is ageless.
Sinister in latin mean left. Dexter mean right.
Lecture 4 (Cont.)
Erix – symbolic interpretation always tends to the more and more
universal. IT doesn’t start that way but it goes that way.
Pas. – celestial A. – mental or spiritual beauty that attracts
Earthly – materialitic.
Heavenly Aphrodite is symbolic of spiritual/mental in our beloved the
one we want to possess.
Earthly A – physical beauty.
Erix – why stop on beauty in lovers. Heavenly A is symbolic of spiritual
beauty where is it found…
We are not talking about a pretty face or a beautiful mind.
Erix – universal beauty, wherever it is found.
Known by its fruits – possession of celestial beauty always results in
virtue. The possession of earthly Aphrodite always result in production
of vice in you.
Vice=illness/disease/lack of health/unhealthy
We can be attracted to things that are unhealthy for us.
What makes us produce health?
Amounts of things – either extremes are unhealthy. You have to have
the right amount of good things. Virtue is in the middle.
Moderation in the right things. Cant be moderately murderer.
Something are little amounts are too much – poison.
You can have too much of a good thing.
Moderate amount – produces harmony
Ex. To be a professional athlete in definition unhealthy – wears you
down. You are prone to injuries. Careers are short because they hurt
themselves by exercising too much.
Ex. Orchestra – rare that amateur orchestra is too quiet. They are too
loud. Discord. Professional musician play as loudly as the piece
requires they blend in – healthy music.
Ex. Bridge – harmonious relation of its parts.
We are attracted to earthly Aphrodite when you are at excess.
Heavenly – healthy and virtuous
Earthly – excess leads to unhealthy He is talking about the forces that make the world go around.
Aristophanes – writer of low comedies that are packed with sex. First of
the literally response. It rejects the theogony as being adequate as real
discussion of love. Theogony was not good enough. He is rejecting it on
the grounds of entertainment. Its beyond symbolic. They have nothing
to do with the truth.
Who created humans?
Five different races of humans.
One creation of humans and it was by Zeus. He created human with
They are strong. They want to rule the world. They want to attack
Zeus. Zeus splits them. He gets Apollo to remedy them. They miss
their our halves. Half of their strength and form is gone. They look for
their other halves. They do not know who their other halves are
because they couldn’t see each other faces. They grab someone and
hug them for comfortable. Zeus doesn’t like it because they are laying
down and they are going to die and he isn’t happy with Apollo. The
have sex and feel enough relief to separate from each other to do
That’s not enough for people because that’s what they really want. The
want to find their other halves. The do not know who their soulmates
Eros comes into the world. Its his job to guide us to our other halves. If
Eros commands you follow your heart to find that special person that
Imaginative, funny and fits the love in Ancient Greece.
Gays/Lesbos/heterosexual. The lovers are not like each other. We are
looking for a person that’s not us but that completes us. They have
what we lack – complement.
Plausibility principle – not that is true but believable. It explains why
love is like it is.
Artful comedy. Real step away from oral traditions of moyths. Myths
are not what the gods tell us they are our own creations.
Ultimate good is unity with your complement. Don’t look for someone
exactly like you but someone that completes you.
Test Don’t want formal essay.
Brief explanation what is mental by oral, symbolic, literal response to
myth. How is that speech response to a particular response to myth.
That makes it oral, symbolic, literal response myth. Why the sequence.
How they are different ways of thinking about myths. Characteristics
(what do they do)
Why are they still think they are important to respond to myths.
Pithy clear and complete analysis. Concise and well organized. Depth
If you have space prove for every response what makes them the type
of response they are and why is it important to myth.
Agathon – humour of a tragedy is lofty – refined. Intelligent people are
expected to grasp. Main mechanist that works in Agathon’s speech is
the play on words – metaphor. He speaks in metaphor but
misinterprets it. He takes the metaphor to be descriptive. He treats
things as if they were descriptive. He deliberately misinterprets the
metaphor. He treats it as a realistic description. He does this to make
fun of philosophy. He presents us with an argument it isn’t an
argument because it’s not valid. If he was gives it literal descriptions
then it would be valid.
He confuses the literal description and metaphor.
What is a metaphor?
A description that cant’t be taken literally.
Example: Jacob is a fruitful vine.
It isn’t literal because you can’t plant him.
If we took it literally, you would know the person is joking.
He pretends to give us arguments, it is valid only if you take the
descriptions literally but you cannot.
He is a philosopher and will refute the myths because they are not
true. Eros is the oldest of the Gods. Eros cannot be old because:
1. Eros has the features of the young. What quality does he have to
make us think he is more of a young person than old?
1. He is agile. Agility is a quality of the young. Proof that he is
i. Eros avoids old age which bears down on us with
Two metaphors: 1. Avoids old age. What it really mean is he is not attracted to the old.
He is saying Eros jumps out of the way of old age. Suggesting the old
age is rolling down on us and the only way to avoid it is to jump out of
its way. It really means that we are old before we know it. It occurs
before we expect it to. It isn’t a physical object.
It’s funny because he makes an obvious mistake. This doesn’t prove
that Eros is agile at all. It’s not relevant. It is only relevant if we
interpret it literally.
Old age is a physical process.
This argument only makes if he made a mistake. If he made a mistake
for a physical object rolling down the hill.
If we don’t know there is something wrong with the old age being a
physical object you don’t understand the joke.
They are all refined.
How do we know Eros is very light of foot?
Because he is sensitive. Because he walks and lives in the thoughts.
Thoughts are soft. You can’t literally walk in thoughts.
He is being stupid on purpose, you are supposed to catch it and it’s
The pretence to do philosophy. When in actuality it involves a play on
What good things does Agathon attribute to Eros?
Eros is young. We know Eros is young – he brings concord – peace
because for the longest time the Gods were at war so he couldn’t have
been there so he is young.
Beauty, peace, health.
He has the argument to prove it. His arguments are sophisticated.
We see why Agathon comes second. He makes fun of the philosophical
tradition. Aristophanes is a lampooning of the oral tradition of the
Socrates – responds by taking Agathon seriously. Logical speech. Going
to start with an argument disqualifying the physician’s response. He
says he is impressed but he speaks the truth. He is going to take on a
position that Eros is a God.
“Agathon, are you going to stand the position that Eros is a God” “yes”
He designs a premise for his speech by asking Agathon questions.
“Does Eros love beauty?” “Yes” “If we love something, do we desire it?” “Yes”
“Eros desires beauty?” “Yes”
This is where Socrates argument starts to bite.
“Do we desire what we possess?” “No, possession entails security”
Why does hunger involve the desire for food? You want it because you
don’t have it.
If we are holding something you don’t know what it is you can’t
possess it. If you are a pig and someone throws money at you. It
doesn’t possess it because it doesn’t know the concept of money so it
cannot possess. It doesn’t possess it. If you are ignorant you can’t
possess it so you can’t desire it.
He doesn’t go that far because Eros desires beauty. To possess it you
have to hold it securely. And logically he doesn’t possess it.
“Are the Gods are blessed? – The want for nothing “yes”
“If they are blessed, they have everything?” “Yes”
“Does Eros have everything?” “No, he lacks beauty”
Therefore Eros is not a God.
Proved that in fact Agathon holds contradictory positions. In the
beginning Agathon said Eros is a God and now told Socrates that Eros
is not a God as he doesn’t have everything so he isn’t blessed.
Effective form of argument because if you could get a person to
answer question they are agreeing to the conclusion.
Its an impressive argument but its not Socrate’s argument. It’s
Diotima. She is a woman he met.
Socrates: “If you want the truth about love, ask a woman”
We should have an opinion of a woman.
He starts talking about Diotima. “Don’t feel stupid Agathon because
when I (Socrates) started talking about Eros being a God I felt the
same.” You can’t desire something you are ignorant of. Eros is not a pig
because the pig is ignorant of beauty but Eros isn’t ignorant of beauty
because he desires beauty. He must be a friendly spirit – demiurge –
friend of men. His job is connecting mortals and immortals. He brings
mortals who are ignorant just enough of beauty so they can desire it.
If ignorance doesn’t allow you to possess it. If you are going to have
possession of beauty you need to have knowledge. To possess is to
Neither knowledge nor ignorance - opinion.
What is the different to opinion and knowledge with respect of the
possession of the truth?
Expert is a sure possession of the truth – knowledge of the truth about
something, not only of the thing.
Opinion is the limited/unsure possession of the truth about something.
You can wander into error.
Is appearance of something may differ from the substance. Shiny
objects are not all gold.
Opinion of beauty. Opinion is good because its not ignorance. But it’s
Opinion is good if you don’t rest with your opinion it’s never good
enough. Opinion will inspire you to have knowledge. That’s the value of
the opinion. Especially about beauty. No one wants the appearance of
beauty, you want real beauty.
We do not have the real thing without the knowledge.
Eros is a spirit gives us opinion which allows us to desire beauty, we
want the real thing, so it gives us the desire for knowledge of beauty.
Beauty inspires us. You can’t do one without the other.
Diotima starts to tell us a myth. It doesn’t serve the same purpose as
the myth of the Agathon or Aristophanes. The purpose of the myth is to
demonstrate the argument.
Plenty has what Poverty wants. Poverty is the source of
resourcefulness. Eros gives us the resources to get knowledge even
though Eros doesn’t have knowledge. What do you need to do if you
don’t have much?
You have to be resourceful and clever and inventive. Eros is resourceful because his mother is Poverty and father is Plenty.
All mortal things desire beauty by Eros residing in them – because of
sexual drive. Reproduction.
What motivates male beavers to reproduce?
They desire sex with a female beaver.
Beautiful beavers attract male beavers to mate with them. This
produces what they really desire beautiful baby beavers. (BBB).
Healthy beautiful baby beavers to produce.
The ultimate goal is the desire for immortality (animals – biological
The desire for beauty inspires us to have knowledge of beauty which is
We can give birth to beautiful ideas.
Beautiful ideas last forever.
How do you give birth to beautiful ideas?
Lover James (old) sees beloved Kevin (young).
It has to be a guy. Possess sexually.
First step up – visit the AGO. Look at immortal representation of
beautiful bodies. They will be beautiful forever because they
immortalized in art.
Set up to trick Kevin but tricked himself because at the AGO he is
exposed to a beauty more universal that in comparison Kevin’s
beautiful body which is a pale imitation.
Start falling in love with beautiful institutions – something to which art
is a pale imitation. It’s from a beautiful idea because someone had the
idea to have the institutions.
Beautiful ideas give birth to beautiful institution.
Go from being a seducer to a companion, to a scholar. Date to
colleague by studying beautiful ideas.
Idea of beautiful embodies beauty it is beauty. We grasp it as
knowledge because our capacity to study.
Latter of love. In possession of the idea of beauty.
Knowing the idea of beauty and having sure possession of the truth
you discover a part of yourself that is immortal.
As we climb the latter of love everything we love behind is a pale
imitation. We find the true beauty that you were desiring all along
That’s the path Eros tricks us.
Then you are Godlike because you discover a part of yourself that’s
like a God Argument for true beauty.
Its grasps as a form of knowledge. Inspires us to knowledge.
Come to university to have beautiful job. But for those who are inspired
by the true beauty of university. We will get lost in the world of
Porne – Greek word for prostitute. They promised with their stories.
Diotima – is the true porne because she is the only one that delivers
the true goods.
Socrates – philosophical response.
What’s the difference between Agathon and Alcibiades.?
Agathon writes tragedies- they are high, honourable, heroes.
Comedies – low, explicit reference to sex, as in the case with
Aristophanes. That’s what you expect of the comedian
Pornography is sexually erotic stories. Supposed to give their
customers sexual ecstasy.
Most porne don’t deliver what they promised. No commitment for the
man. But it doesn’t sound like ecstasy. Ecstasy is supposed to last
Diotima does deliver what she promised. How to possess beauty itself
not imitation of it. How to possess it eternally. If you follow instructions
in her story you will become immortal and be Godlike.
We can grasp eternal ideas and get in touch of ourselves that is
Godlike and we can live as Gods.
She is a true porne. What she offers she really delivers. She promises
that you can attain eternal beauty, immortality, Godlike immortality.
All you have to do to get it is to go to school.
Socrates thinks you need to have a beautiful body. You need a
beautiful person to trick you and to remind you why you are looking for
something you really want. You hate studying so you have to be tricked that you will get a physical
good. You don’t see the beauty in studying and you don’t see the
beauty of studying the things that are worthy studying. That’s why its
important to be attracted to something you find beautiful now.
Someone in a relationship has to be physically beautiful because
studying will come easier for the other person to make the study
happen. The younger beautiful person will motivate you to study.
Beauty is a motivator to study or you will never start. The best is the
physical beauty because it always promises immortality.
“They lived happily ever after” once two beautiful people get together.
Beauty delivers at a level of the idea of beauty.
What is the love that parents have their kids?
Making the parents immortality. The mother ensuring that her kids
survive by nurturing them to grow. Important that they survive and
thrive because they will be able to reproduce and promises
You don’t have possess beauty without knowledge.
If you possess it, it means you know it and vice versa.
What Socrates and Diotima done?
Philosophical response to myth.
Before content now structure of their response.
People that begin the discussion are Socrates and Agathon. Socrates
asks questions. Agathon answers them. First stage of philosophy.
The person answers the questions puts his Doxa – opinion. Agathon’s
doxa Eros is a God.
The purpose of the questions is to test whether or not Agathon’s doxa
is consistent with his other beliefs. It is not.
Questions are designed to show that Agathon’s reasoning is
inconsistent. Process of questioning is elenchus.
Agathon feels betrayed by Agathon.
Aphoria – confusion. You need a teacher. Your opinion is not based on
Dialectic – teaching. The questioner is working with you to put the right
reasons for believing the truth in the right order.
Knowledge isn’t about having the right answer. Someone can g