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Re: Aporreta and Plato's Unwritten Doctrines -- on Dennis and Giannis

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  • vaeringjar <vaeringjar@yahoo.com>
    ... in ... nor ... subject, ... from a ... continued ... therewith, ... soul by ... word ... speaks. Yes, I am are referring to the same doctrines. Hard to
    Message 1 of 12 , Dec 14, 2002
      --- In neoplatonism@yahoogroups.com, "Melanie Brawn Mineo
      <melonyfelony@y...>" <melonyfelony@y...> wrote:
      > I've been reading this string of messages with interest, and
      > wanted to say that I am familiar with the article on the "Third Man
      > argument" you mention. For myself, the "Unwritten Doctrines" that
      > particularly interest me are the ones that Plato may be pointing to
      > his 7th Letter: 7.341CD. Plato himself states that there does not,
      > will there ever, exist any treatise of his dealing with "this
      > for knowledge of it does not at all admit of verbal transmission
      from a
      > teacher like other studies. Coming as a result of individual,
      > application to the subject itself and communion (sunousia)
      > knowledge of it is suddenly (exaiphnes) brought to birth in the
      soul by
      > direct experience, "as light that is ignited by a leaping fire, and
      > thereafter is self-generating and self-nourishing." The written
      > can only point to the "unwritten," living realities of which it

      Yes, I am are referring to the same doctrines. Hard to ignore what
      Plato says here, isn't it, as wrenching as it is, making you wonder
      then exactly how he valued all the dialogues that were written down?
      Unless of course, as some, you discount the entire letter, so that
      this particular point just disappears as evidence.

      But what he says about not writing such a specific type treatise
      actually makes sense to me, when I consider that through dialectic
      one attempts to arrive at the truth, and dialectic implies engaged
      discussion, not merely passive reading. (I think this would be true
      also for even the ancient Greek habit of reading a text aloud in
      preference to the modern practice of silent reading.)

      And if I may, I know from my own experience that something about the
      physicality of the back and forth of discussion, the drama of it, if
      you will, brings me to a heightened perception of whatever I am
      considering, and often insights come to me that probably wouldn't if
      I were just sitting and thinking, or just reading to myself. So I
      think that Plato's very clear statement in this letter that he will
      never write down such things in a final form, is actually quite
      consistent with the method of his dialogues. They are after all often
      investigations, not pronouncements and include a lot of loose ends.

      Whether he tied them together in his own mind, and then shared that
      only with his students, and occasionally if also embarassingly with
      some public, as at the infamous lecture on the Good attended by
      Aristotle and others, is another matter and not so easy to determine
      with assurance.

      Dennis Clark
      San Francisco
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