Social And Political Philosophy Of Plato

1416 Words6 Pages
On the Social and Political Philosophy of Plato
Philosophy is the study of the ultimate causes of things known in the light of reason. Or so the definitive meaning of philosophy would state. Philosophy is the love of wisdom as the etymological definition would give. But what is Philosophy when put into the context of Social and Political Philosophy? Social means pertaining to the society. While political means pertaining to the affairs of the state. Deriving a definition from the common notions of the terms, Social and Political Philosophy is the study of the ultimate causes of the matters of the society and state. But that is still too vague of a definition to start with. Let us analyze the definition piece by piece. ‘Philosophy is the study
…show more content…
According to Plato, the soul has three parts, namely: reason, spirit and appetite. For Plato the soul is the source of locomotion and life for an individual. It is his belief that the body itself is inanimate, and in need of a something to animate it, and this something is the soul. Appetite and Spirit are the irrational part of the soul. They tend to seek the earthly pleasure of this earth, and if not guided by reason would degrade a person to succumb to vices. Reason should be in control of spirit and appetite in order for a person to be moral and good. Plato had used the analogy of the two horses and the charioteer to describe the three parts of the soul. The two horses are spirit and appetite while the charioteer is reason. If the charioteer is inattentive and does not direct the two horses, the two horses would lead the charioteer a different place than intended. So in order to attain peace, the charioteer must take control of the reigns and lead them to the right…show more content…
As stated above the society plays a role on the morality of an individual. For a society affects an individual whether consciously or unconsciously. That is Plato maintained that the virtue of an individual must also be the virtue of the state. That being said the four virtues mentioned must also be the virtue of the state. Though Plato had said that in order to know what a just man is we need to know what justice is for the state. For Plato the state is just like a giant man. Like a man composed of parts, so is the state. The state is a construct of man, in order to supply him of his need. That is basing on the precept that no man can sustain himself alone. For man have many basic needs, like food, clothing and shelter. And no man possesses all matters of trade in order to sustain himself alone that is why he needs connections. And when these basic things are met, man does not settle on this. He needs something more. That is why there is music and the arts, and that is why people have maids and butlers and drivers, according to Plato. So now, one would eventually exhaust the resources of a certain area because of these desires, and thus would take a part of another’s land. Now conflict would occur, if that so happens. So, like the body needs protector from foreign invaders, so does the

More about Social And Political Philosophy Of Plato

Open Document