RE: Theos-World Socrates and Plato
Jun 06, 2006 08:11 AM
by W.Dallas TenBroeck
6/6/2006 8:05 AM
We ought to also check the T. Taylor translation -- in some ways it is
better than Jewett's
Here is an interesting view: from FORUM ANSWERS, p. 128-9
"Q.: When great teachers like St. Paul, St. John, Socrates and
others incarnate do they commence with the degree of development with which
they closed the preceding incarnation? if so, why are there so few great
souls in the world teaching and living the proper life?
W.Q.J.-Let us take the last part of your question first, and ask how do you
know there are "so few great souls in the world"? It would not be right to
judge all other men by yourself nor by a limited number of persons you may
have known, hence it is likely you do not so judge, but have merely assumed
that there are very few souls in the world like unto those you mention. Such
an assumption does not seem to be a correct one. There very probably are
among us now many great souls of the past. Nothing in philosophy or the
doctrine of reincarnation is against such a view.
We being actors on the present stage are not able to judge whether some
others of whom we know are great men or not, who may be regarded by
posterity as great personages like to St. Paul and your other examples. It
is more than likely St. Paul was not highly regarded in his time; now, in
the distance, he shines out.
Certainly we know that Socrates had such poor regard from his contemporaries
as to be poisoned because he was thought not to be a good man; now we, so
far off, look at him differently. In the same way will it be respecting our
own present times after the lapse of centuries.
As to where any Ego will begin in any life is determined by karma and the
needs of development. The whole front, or mass of our nature is so enormous
that one life or one sort of development is only a small part of it: there
is no possibility of at once exhibiting it all. So the former life of St.
Paul may be now certainly hidden for further use while he is undergoing
another necessary development which had formerly been neglected. If we look
at his life we find he was a persecutor once. That was not at all atoned for
by his subsequent conduct- unless of course you admit vicarious salvation-
which I do not. He must atone for all that hurt done to others, and his
reincarnation in some obscure place and body for several lives would quite
accord with the needs of the case. So you can reason out the whole matter,
recollecting that karma goes by (129) cause and effect, and that the whole
vast nature of man must be considered, and that you and I do not know the
whole nature of those people you refer to. Hence we must conclude that the
present age and the karma of past sages do not coincide in such a way as to
produce many living before us. And if we ask what is the use, we must
conclude that in such a selfish, superficial time as this they would be
useless and out of place." F A pp. 128-9
Sent: Sunday, May 28, 2006 9:05 AM
Subject: Socrates and Plato
It is rather interesting for anyone to say that Socrates was not Plato's
The first third part of Plato's extensive works is most influenced by
Socrates and Socrates is a major player in those Dialogues.
Plato openly recognized Socrates influence over him and made extensive
homage to his master, for instance in "Apology of Socrates".
Plato's inner source is linked -- as it is well-known -- to certain
Pythagorean manuscripts he acquired. Yet he was a pupil of Socrates'.
Best regards, Carlos.
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