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2020-08-07 11:20:58 站长之家


这就宇宙It remains for us to glance at the controversy which has long been carried on respecting the true position of the Sophists in Greek life and thought. We have already alluded to the by no means favourable judgment passed on them by some among their contemporaries. Socrates condemned them severely,H but only because they received payment for their lessons; and the sentiment was probably echoed by many who had neither his disinterestedness nor his frugality. To make profit by intellectual work was not unusual in Greece. Pheidias sold his statues; Pindar spent his life writing for money; Simonides and Sophocles were charged with showing too great eagerness in the pursuit of gain.75 But a man’s conversation with his friends had always been gratuitous, and the novel idea of charging a high fee for it excited considerable offence. Socrates called it prostitution—the sale of that which should be the free gift of love—without perhaps sufficiently considering that the same privilege had formerly been purchased with a more dishonourable price. He also considered that a freeman was degraded by placing himself at the beck and call of another, although it would appear that the Sophists chose their own time for lecturing, and were certainly not more slaves than a sculptor or poet who had received an order to execute. It was also argued that any one who really succeeded in improving the104 community benefited so much by the result that it was unfair on his part to demand any additional remuneration. Suppose a popular preacher were to come over from New York to England, star about among the principal cities, charging a high price for admission to his sermons, and finally return home in possession of a handsome fortune, we can well imagine that sarcasms at the expense of such profitable piety would not be wanting. This hypothetical case will help us to understand how many an honest Athenian must have felt towards the showy colonial strangers who were making such a lucrative business of teaching moderation and justice. Plato, speaking for his master but not from his master’s standpoint, raised an entirely different objection. He saw no reason why the Sophists should not sell their wisdom if they had any wisdom to sell. But this was precisely what he denied. He submitted their pretensions to a searching cross-examination, and, as he considered, convicted them of being worthless pretenders. There was a certain unfairness about this method, for neither his own positive teaching nor that of Socrates could have stood before a similar test, as Aristotle speedily demonstrated in the next generation. He was, in fact, only doing for Protagoras and Gorgias what they had done for early Greek speculation, and what every school habitually does for its predecessors. It had yet to be learned that this dissolving dialectic constitutes the very law of philosophical progress. The discovery was made by Hegel, and it is to him that the Sophists owe their rehabilitation in modern times. His lectures on the History of Philosophy contain much that was afterwards urged by Grote on the same side. Five years before the appearance of Grote’s famous sixty-seventh chapter, Lewes had also published a vindication of the Sophists, possibly suggested by Hegel’s work, which he had certainly consulted when preparing his own History. There is, however, this great difference, that while the two English critics endeavour to minimise the105 sceptical, innovating tendency of the Sophists, it is, contrariwise, brought into exaggerated prominence by the German philosopher. We have just remarked that the final dissolution of Sophisticism was brought about by the separate development given to each of the various tendencies which it temporarily combined. Now, each of our three apologists has taken up one of these tendencies, and treated it as constituting the whole movement under discussion. To Hegel, the Sophists are chiefly subjective idealists. To Lewes, they are rhetoricians like Isocrates. To Grote, they are, what in truth the Sophists of the Roman empire were, teachers representing the standard opinions of their age. Lewes and Grote are both particularly anxious to prove that the original Sophists did not corrupt Greek morality. Thus much has been conceded by contemporary German criticism, and is no more than was observed by Plato long ago. Grote further asserts that the implied corruption of morality is an illusion, and that at the end of the Peloponnesian war the Athenians were no worse than their forefathers who fought at Marathon. His opinion is shared by so accomplished a scholar as Prof. Jowett;76 but here he has the combined authority of Thucydides, Aristophanes, and Plato against him. We have, however, examined this question already, and need not return to it. Whether any of the Sophists themselves can be proved to have taught immoral doctrines is another moot point. Grote defends them all, Polus and Thrasymachus included. Here, also, we have expressed our dissent from the eminent historian, whom we can only suppose to have missed the whole point of Plato’s argument. Lewes takes different106 ground when he accuses Plato of misrepresenting his opponents. It is true that the Sophists cannot be heard in self-defence, but there is no internal improbability about the charges brought against them. The Greek rhetoricians are not accused of saying anything that has not been said again and again by their modern representatives. Whether the odium of such sentiments should attach itself to the whole class of Sophists is quite another question. Grote denies that they held any doctrine in common. The German critics, on the other hand, insist on treating them as a school with common principles and tendencies. Brandis calls them ‘a number of men, gifted indeed, but not seekers after knowledge for its own sake, who made a trade of giving instruction as a means for the attainment of external and selfish ends, and of substituting mere technical proficiency for real science.’77 If our account be the true one, this would apply to Gorgias and the younger rhetoricians alone. One does not precisely see what external or selfish ends were subserved by the physical philosophy which Prodicus and Hippias taught, nor why the comprehensive enquiries of Protagoras into the conditions of civilisation and the limits of human knowledge should be contemptuously flung aside because he made them the basis of an honourable profession. Zeller, in much the same strain, defines a Sophist as one who professes to be a teacher of wisdom, while his object is individual culture (die formelle und praktische Bildung des Subjekts) and not the scientific investigation of truth.78 We do not know whether Grote was content with an explanation which would only have required an unimportant modification of his own statements to agree precisely with them. It ought amply to have satisfied Lewes. For ourselves, we must confess to caring very little whether the Sophists investigated truth for its own sake or as a means to self-culture. We believe, and in the next chapter we hope107 to show, that Socrates, at any rate, did not treat knowledge apart from practice as an end in itself. But the history of philosophy is not concerned with such subtleties as these. Our contention is that the Stoic, Epicurean, and Sceptical schools may be traced back through Antisthenes and Aristippus to Hippias and Protagoras much more directly than to Socrates. If Zeller will grant this, then he can no longer treat Sophisticism as a mere solvent of the old physical philosophy. If he denies it, we can only appeal to his own history, which here, as well as in our discussions of early Greek thought, we have found more useful than any other work on the subject. Our obligations to Grote are of a more general character. We have learned from him to look at the Sophists without prejudice. But we think that he, too, underrates their far-reaching intellectual significance, while his defence of their moral orthodoxy seems, so far as certain members of the class are concerned, inconsistent with any belief in Plato’s historical fidelity. That the most eminent Sophists did nothing to corrupt Greek morality is now almost universally admitted. If we have succeeded in showing that they did not corrupt but fruitfully develop Greek philosophy, the purpose of this study will have been sufficiently fulfilled.破其兽而The confusion was partly inherited from Aristotle. When discussing the psychology of that philosopher, we showed that his active Nous is no other than the idea of which we are at any moment actually conscious. Our own reason is the passive Nous, whose identity is lost in the multiplicity of objects with which it becomes identified in turn. But Aristotle was careful not to let the personality of God, or the supreme Nous, be endangered by resolving it into the totality of substantial forms which constitute Nature. God is self-conscious in the strictest sense. He thinks nothing but himself. Again, the subjective starting-point of305 Plotinus may have affected his conception of the universal Nous. A single individual may isolate himself from his fellows in so far as he is a sentient being; he cannot do so in so far as he is a rational being. His reason always addresses itself to the reason of some one else—a fact nowhere brought out so clearly as in the dialectic philosophy of Socrates and Plato. Then, when an agreement has been established, their minds, before so sharply divided, seem to be, after all, only different personifications of the same universal spirit. Hence reason, no less than its objects, comes to be conceived as both many and one. And this synthesis of contradictories meets us in modern German as well as in ancient Greek philosophy.一盘

    Lucretius has been called Rome’s only great speculative genius. This is, of course, absurd. A talent for lucid ex101position does not constitute speculative genius, especially when it is unaccompanied by any ability to criticise the opinions expounded. The author of the De Rerum Natura probably had a lawyer’s education. He certainly exhibits great forensic skill in speaking from his brief. But Cicero and Seneca showed the same skill on a much more extensive scale; and the former in particular was immensely superior to Lucretius in knowledge and argumentative power. Besides, the poet, who was certainly not disposed to hide his light under a bushel, and who exalts his own artistic excellences in no measured terms, never professes to be anything but a humble interpreter of truths first revealed to his Greek instructor’s vivid intellect. It has, indeed, been claimed for Lucretius that he teaches a higher wisdom than his acknowledged guide.195 This assertion is, however, not borne out by a careful comparison between the two.196 In both there is the same theory of the universe, of man, and of the relations connecting them with one another. The idea of Nature in Lucretius shows no advance over the same idea in Epicurus. To each it expresses, not, as with the Stoics, a unifying power, a design by which all things work together for the best, but simply the conditions of a permanent mechanical aggregation. When Lucretius speaks of foedera Naturai, he means, not what we understand by laws of nature, that is, uniformities of causation underlying all phenomenal differences, to understand which is an exaltation of human dignity through the added power of prevision and control which it bestows, but rather the limiting possibilities of existence, the barriers against which human hopes and aspirations dash themselves in vain—an objective logic which guards us against fallacies instead of enabling us to arrive at positive conclusions. We have here the pervadingly negative character of Epicureanism,102 though probably presented with something of Roman solemnity and sternness. The idea of individuality, with which Lucretius has also been credited, occupies but a small place in his exposition, and seems to have interested him only as a particular aspect of the atomic theory. The ultimate particles of matter must be divided into unlike groups of units, for otherwise we could not explain the unlikenesses exhibited by sensible objects. This is neither the original Greek idea, that every man has his own life to lead, irrespective of public opinion or arbitrary convention; nor is it the modern delight in Nature’s inexhaustible variety as opposed to the poverty of human invention, or to the restrictions of fashionable taste. Nor can we admit that Lucretius developed Epicurean philosophy in the direction of increased attention to the external world. The poet was, no doubt, a consummate observer, and he used his observations with wonderful felicity for the elucidation and enforcement of his philosophical reasoning; but in this respect he has been equalled or surpassed by other poets who either knew nothing of systematic philosophy, or, like Dante, were educated in a system as unlike as possible to that of Epicurus. There is, therefore, every reason for assuming that he saw and described phenomena not by virtue of his scientific training, but by virtue of his artistic endowment. And the same may be said of the other points in which he is credited with improvements on his master’s doctrine. There is, no doubt, a strong consciousness of unity, of individuality, and of law running through his poem. But it is under the form of intuitions or contemplations, not under the form of speculative ideas that they are to be found. And, as will be presently shown, it is not as attributes of Nature but as attributes of life that they present themselves to his imagination.了起会弱There was a time when mortals lived like brutes最起So far we have contrasted the Apologia with the Memorabilia. We have now to consider in what relation it stands to Plato’s other writings. The constructive dogmatic Socrates, who is a principal spokesman in some of them, differs widely from the sceptical Socrates of the famous Defence, and the difference has been urged as an argument for the historical authenticity of the latter.85 Plato, it is implied, would not115 have departed so far from his usual conception of the sage, had he not been desirous of reproducing the actual words spoken on so solemn an occasion. There are, however, several dialogues which seem to have been composed for the express purpose of illustrating the negative method supposed to have been described by Socrates to his judges, investigations the sole result of which is to upset the theories of other thinkers, or to show that ordinary men act without being able to assign a reason for their conduct. Even the Republic is professedly tentative in its procedure, and only follows out a train of thought which has presented itself almost by accident to the company. Unlike Charles Lamb’s Scotchman, the leading spokesman does not bring, but find, and you are invited to cry halves to whatever turns up in his company.会这

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    袈裟In Plato’s Parmenides we have to note the germ of a new dialectic. There it is suggested that we may overcome the difficulties attending a particular theory—in this instance the theory of self-existing ideas—by considering how much greater are the difficulties which would ensue on its rejection. The arguments advanced by Zeno the Eleatic against the reality of motion are mentioned as a case in point; and Plato proceeds to illustrate his proposed method by showing what consequences respectively follow if we first assume the existence, and then the non-existence of the One; but the whole analysis seems valueless for its immediate purpose, since the resulting impossibilities on either side are left exactly balanced; and Plato does not, like some modern metaphysicians, call in our affections to decide the controversy.有办声笑

    The qualities which enabled Epicurus to compete successfully with much greater thinkers than himself as the founder of a lasting sect, were practical rather than theoretical. Others before him had taught that happiness was the end of life; none, like him, had cultivated the art of happiness, and pointed out the fittest methods for attaining it. The idea of such an art was a real and important addition to the resources of civilisation. No mistake is greater than to suppose that pleasure is lost by being made an object of pursuit. To single out the most agreeable course among many alternatives, and, when once found, steadily to pursue it, is an aptitude like any other, and is capable of being brought to a high degree of perfection by assiduous attention and self-discipline.211 No doubt the capacity for enjoyment117 is impaired by excessive self-consciousness, but the same is true of every other accomplishment during the earlier stages of its acquisition. It is only the beginner who is troubled by taking too much thought about his own proficiency; when practice has become a second nature, the professor of hedonism reaps his harvest of delight without wasting a thought on his own efforts, or allowing the phantom of pleasure in the abstract to allure him away from its particular and present realisation. And, granting that happiness as such can be made an object of cultivation, Epicurus was perfectly right in teaching that the removal of pain is its most essential condition, faulty as was (from a speculative point of view) his confusion of the condition with the thing itself. If the professed pleasure-seekers of modern society often fail in the business of their lives, it is from neglecting this salutary principle, especially where it takes the form of attention to the requirements of health. In assigning a high importance to friendship, he was equally well inspired. Congenial society is not only the most satisfying of enjoyments in itself, but also that which can be most easily combined with every other enjoyment. It is also true, although a truth felt rather than perceived by our philosopher, that speculative agreement, especially when speculation takes the form of dissent from received opinions, greatly increases the affection of friends for one another. And as theology is the subject on which unforced agreement seems most difficult, to eliminate its influence altogether was a valuable though purely negative contribution to unanimity of thought and feeling in the hedonistic sect.更肋Thus, while the atomic theory enables Lucretius to account for the dependent and perishable nature of life, the same theory enables him to bring out by contrast its positive and distinguishing characteristics. The bulk, the flexibility, the complexity, and the sensibility of animal bodies are opposed to the extreme minuteness, the absolute hardness, the simplicity, and the unconsciousness of the primordial substances which build them up.不了

   只有三分11选5手机购彩网址 and grant that we the wisdom哪怕Through all his criticisms on the popular sources of information—sense, language and public opinion—Plato refers to an ideal of perfect knowledge which he assumes without being able to define it. It must satisfy the negative condition of being free from self-contradiction, but further than this we cannot go. Yet, in the hands of a metaphysician, no more than this was required to reconstruct the world. The demand for consistency explains the practical philosophy of Socrates. It also explains, under another form, the philosophy, both practical and speculative, of his disciple. Identity and the correlative of identity, difference, gradually came to cover with their manifold combinations all knowledge, all life, and all existence.太古


避开Plato, like Socrates, makes religious instruction the basis of education. But where the master had been content to set old beliefs on a new basis of demonstration, the disciple aimed at nothing less than their complete purification from irrational and immoral ingredients. He lays down two great principles, that God is good, and that He is true.142 Every story which is inconsistent with such a character must be rejected; so also must everything in the poets which redounds to the discredit of the national heroes, together with everything tending in the remotest degree to make vice attractive or virtue repellent. It is evident that Plato, like Xenophanes, repudiated not only the scandalous details of popular mythology, but also the anthropomorphic conceptions which lay at its foundation; although he did not think it advisable to state his unbelief with equal frankness. His own theology was a sort of star-worship, and he proved the divinity of the heavenly bodies by an appeal to the uniformity of their movements.143 He further taught that the world was created by an absolutely good Being; but we cannot be sure that this was more than a popular version of the theory which placed the abstract idea of Good at the summit of the dialectic series. The truth is that there are two distinct types of religion, the one chiefly235 interested in the existence and attributes of God, the other chiefly interested in the destiny of the human soul. The former is best represented by Judaism, the latter by Buddhism. Plato belongs to the psychic rather than to the theistic type. The doctrine of immortality appears again and again in his Dialogues, and one of the most beautiful among them is entirely devoted to proving it. He seems throughout to be conscious that he is arguing in favour of a paradox. Here, at least, there are no appeals to popular prejudice such as figure so largely in similar discussions among ourselves. The belief in immortality had long been stirring; but it had not taken deep root among the Ionian Greeks. We cannot even be sure that it was embraced as a consoling hope by any but the highest minds anywhere in Hellas, or by them for more than a brief period. It would be easy to maintain that this arose from some natural incongeniality to the Greek imagination in thoughts which drew it away from the world of sense and the delights of earthly life. But the explanation breaks down immediately when we attempt to verify it by a wider experience. No modern nation enjoys life so keenly as the French. Yet, quite apart from traditional dogmas, there is no nation that counts so many earnest supporters of the belief in a spiritual existence beyond the grave. And, to take an individual example, it is just the keen relish which Mr. Browning’s Cleon has for every sort of enjoyment which makes him shrink back with horror from the thought of annihilation, and grasp at any promise of a happiness to be prolonged through eternity. A closer examination is needed to show us by what causes the current of Greek thought was swayed.基础

着奈To search out the secret of things,了她



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