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PHL202 - Republic Books V.docx

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Jon Rick

Republic Books V-VII Platonic Forms and Knowledge (K)/Ignorance (I)/Opinion(O) (levels of understanding) Knowledge is of Forms and Opinion/Belief is of Partakers  Knowledge is higher True Philosophers vs. Lovers of Appearances  True Philosophers love knowledge and thus love learning about the Forms, about What-is  Lovers of Appearances love to inquire about Partakers and thus develop mere opinions/beliefs about what is and what is not True Philosophers Should Rule  If true philosophers are the only ones capable of gaining knowledge of Forms (such as the Forms of Beauty, Justice, or Goodness), they are the only ones equipped with the proper Wisdom to rule and protect the Ideal City  484d – as if there is a grand system or plan, from which we bring down to earth and try to understand True Philosophers’ Main Object of Knowledge  What is Socrates talking about in 504d? There is more important than justice… o Form of the Good (503e-518b)  505a o How might we interpret this last pregnant clause of Socrates?  Form of the Good is best of all the forms. A lot of disagreement about what the form is. Socrates cant articulate because he hasn’t reached it. There is something about the form of the good, by which it is the Form of all forms.  The forms themselves partake in the form of good.  Can’t really explain it. So he gives a sense of the offspring of the good.  He is trying to be humble 506d-e  He has a vague sense of it  2 ways of interpreting o He doesn’t have access and can’t speak of it o He does know, and the people he is speaking to don’t, and it limits what he can explain. These people haven’t been initiated o How does Socrates respond to the request that he tell his interlocutors what he believes to be the meaning of Goodness? Image of the Sun 507c-509b Each corresponds to a Form of the Good  Connected to our capacity of
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