Friday, October 15, 2010

Cyclic History in Brief

Now the natural tendency of humanity is upward, in the direction of the ethereal—and that tendency is much helped by hardship, which concentrates the mind. When hardship is overcome, the upward striving weakens because attention is then collectively scattered, and if things don’t worsen, a slide develops toward the physical. The choices are spiritualization or commercialization. In due time marching in what for humans is the wrong direction produces disorder and then chaos. With chaos hardship grows—whereupon it is once more natural to seek the heights.


  1. Somehow I overlooked this post yesterday; but reading today, I find it a bit serendipitous, since this is very closely related to the discussion of "thumos" or "spirit" by Plato that I talk about in a post today.

  2. When I read yours on Bendideia this morning, I felt the same delight. I hadn't known this "backstory" to the Republic and found it refreshingly new, not least the "two heads" that must work together for things to work out well, not least governance...

  3. You put this quite poetically.

    And based on these comments, I'll have to check out the Siris blog post for the day as well.