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Phaedrus Phaedrus by Plato
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Phaedrus Quotes Showing 1-30 of 30
“Love is a serious mental disease.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“The madness of love is the greatest of heaven's blessings.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“If men learn this, it will implant forgetfulness in their souls; they will cease to exercise memory because they rely on that which is written, calling things to remembrance no longer from within themselves, but by means of external marks. What you have discovered is a recipe not for memory, but for reminder. And it is no true wisdom that you offer your disciples, but only its semblance, for by telling them of many things without teaching them you will make them seem to know much, while for the most part they know nothing, and as men filled, not with wisdom, but with the conceit of wisdom, they will be a burden to their fellows.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Only a philosopher's mind grows wings, since its memory always keeps it as close as possible to those realities by being close to which the gods are divine.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Man is a prisoner who has no right to open the door of his prison and run away... A man should wait, and not take his own life until God summons him.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“O dear Pan and all the other gods of this place, grant that I may be beautiful inside. Let all my external possessions be in friendly harmony with what is within. May I consider the wise man rich. As for gold, let me have as much as a moderate man could bear and carry with him.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“[there are] two kinds of things the nature of which it would be quite wonderful to grasp by means of a systematic art...

the first consists in seeing together things that are scattered about everywhere and collecting them into one kind, so that by defining each thing we can make clear the subject of any instruction we wish to give...

[the second], in turn, is to be able to cut up each kind according to its species along its natural joints, and to try not to splinter any part, as a bad butcher might do...

phaedrus, i myself am a lover of these divisions and collections, so that i may be able to think and to speak.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“If anyone comes to the gates of poetry and expects to become an adequate poet by acquiring expert knowledge of the subject without the Muses' madness, he will fail, and his self-controlled verses will be eclipsed by the poetry of men who have been driven out of their minds.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“But of the heaven which is above the heavens, what earthly poet ever did or ever will sing worthily?”
Plato, Phaedrus
“the matter is as it is in all other cases: if it is naturally in you to be a good orator, a notable orator you will be when you have acquired knowledge and practice ...”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Madness, provided it comes as the gift of heaven, is the channel by which we receive the greatest blessings . . . the men of old who gave things their names saw no disgrace or reproach in madness; otherwise they would not have connected it with it the name of the noblest of arts, the art of discerning the future, and called it the manic art . . . So, according to the evidence provided by our ancestors, madness is a nobler thing than sober sense . . . madness comes from God, whereas sober sense is merely human.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Even the best of writings are but a reminiscence of what we know...”
Plato, Phaedrus
“... as a breath of wind or some echo rebounds from smooth, hard surfaces and returns to the source from which it issued, so the stream of beauty passes back into its possessor through his eyes, which is its natural route to the soul; arriving there and setting him all aflutter, it waters the passages of the feathers and causes the wings to grow, and fills the soul of the loved one in his turn with love.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Now I am a diviner, though not a very good one, but I have enough religion for my own use, as you might say of a bad writer—his writing is good enough for him; and”
Plato, Phaedrus
“The word friend is common, the fact is rare.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Oratory is the art of enchanting the soul, and therefore he who would be an orator has to learn the differences of human souls--they are so many and of such a nature, and from them come the differences between man and man.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“May not 'the wolf,' as the proverb says, 'claim a hearing'?”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Writing is unfortunately like painting; for the creations of the painter have the attitude of life, and yet if you ask them a question they preserve a solemn silence. And the same may be said of speeches. You would imagine that they had intelligence, but if you want to know anything and put a question to one of them, there is always one and the same answer. And when they have been once written down they are tumbled about anywhere among those who may or may not understand them, and know not to whom they should reply, to whom not: and, if they are maltreated or abused, they have no parent to protect them; and they cannot protect or defend themselves.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Now in the earthly likenesses of justice and temperance and all other prized possessions of the soul there dwells no luster; nay, so dull are the organs wherewith men approach their images that hardly can a few behold that which is imaged, but with beauty it is otherwise. Beauty it was ours to see in all its brightness in those days when, amidst that happy company, we beheld with our eyes that blessed vision, ourselves in the train of Zeus, others following some other god; then were we all initiated into that mystery which is rightly accounted blessed beyond all others; whole and unblemished were we that did celebrate it, untouched by the evils that awaited us in days to come; whole and unblemished likewise, free from all alloy, steadfast and blissful were the spectacles on which we gazed in the moment of final revelation; pure was the light that shone around us, and pure were we, without taint of that prison house which now we are encompassed withal, and call a body, fast bound therein as an oyster in its shell”
Plato, Phaedrus
“There is a third form of possession or madness, of which the Muses are the source. This seizes a tender, virgin soul and stimulates it to rapt passionate expression, especially in lyric poetry, glorifying the countless mighty deeds of ancient times for the instruction of posterity. But if any man comes to the gates of poetry without the madness of the Muses, persuaded that skill alone will make him a good poet, then shall he and his works of sanity with him be brought to nought by the poetry of madness, and behold, their place is nowhere to be found.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Αν όμως ακούσεις εμένα, πρώτα-πρώτα θα είμαι μαζί σου όχι για να προσέχω την ηδονή της στιγμής, αλλά και τη μελλοντική ωφέλεια που θα 'ρθει, δεν θα νικιέμαι από τον έρωτα, αλλά θα κυβερνάω τον εαυτό μου, ούτε θ' ανοίξω μεγάλη έχθρα για μικροπράγματα, αλλά και για μεγάλα ακόμη θα σου θυμώνω λίγο και σιγά-σιγά, θα σου συγχωρώ όσα λάθη κάνεις χωρίς να το θέλεις και θα κοιτάζω να σε αποτρέπω από όσα θα κάνεις με τη θέλησή σου.”
Πλάτων, Phaedrus
“يُروى يا عزيزي أن أول النبوءات قد صدرت عن شجرة بلوط في محراب زيوس بدورونا. و لم يكن أهل ذلك الزمان حكماءً على طريقتكم أيها الشباب، و إنما كانوا من البساطة بحيث لا يأنفون من سماع ما تنطق به شجرة بلوط أو حجارة مادام ينطوي على الحقيقة. أما أنت فلا يكفيك في الواقع إن كان الكلام صادقًا أم لا بل تريد معرفة من هو قائله و من أين جاء؟”
Plato, Phaedrus
“For a man must have intelligence of universals, and be able to proceed from the many particulars of sense to one conception of reason;—this is the recollection of those things which our soul once saw while following God—when regardless of that which we now call being she raised her head up towards the true being. And therefore the mind of the philosopher alone has wings; and this is just, for he is always, according to the measure of his abilities, clinging in recollection to those things in which God abides, and in beholding which He is what He is. And he who employs aright these memories is ever being initiated into perfect mysteries and alone becomes truly perfect. But, as he forgets earthly interests and is rapt in the divine, the vulgar deem him mad, and rebuke him; they do not see that he is inspired.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“But I have no time for such things; and the reason, my friend, is this. I am still unable, as the Delphic inscription orders, to know myself; and it really seems to be ridiculous to look into other things before I have understood that.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Dear Pan and all you gods of this place, grant me that I may become beautiful within; and that what is in my possession outside me may be in friendly accord with what is inside. And may I count the wise man as rich; and may my pile of gold be of a size that no one but a man of moderate desires could bear or carry it.

- Rowe's translation of Socrates' prayer to Pan”
Plato, Phaedrus
“He who is the victim of his passions and the slave of pleasure will of course desire to make his beloved as agreeable to himself as possible.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“For the body which is moved from without is soulless; but that which is moved from within has a soul..."

(Tr. Jowett)”
Plato, Phaedrus
“There’s no truth to that story’—that when a lover is available you should give your favors to a man who doesn’t love you instead, because he is in control of himself while the lover has lost his head. That would
have been fine to say if madness were bad, pure and simple; but in fact the best things we have come from madness, when it is given as a gift of the god.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“There’s no truth to that story’—that when a lover is available you should give your favors to a man who doesn’t love you instead, because he is in control of himself while the lover has lost his head. That would have been fine to say if madness were bad, pure and simple; but in fact the best things we have come from madness, when it is given as a gift of the god.”
Plato, Phaedrus
“Opinion is the state of mind of non-philosophers, who fail to look further than (or rise above) ordinary appearances.

[Rowe, summarising Plato's position]”
Christopher J. Rowe, Phaedrus