When we recall that Plato invented the concept of the immortal soul (Glaucon has never hear of it and thinks it would be difficult to prove), then nothing is impossible for our sophist writer. With the immortal soul established, Plato finishes the “Republic” with a literal “Wheel of Fortune” for the virtuous and impious alike. If one lives with virtue, one will can have a better lot in the next life. By adding details to his stories, Plato makes them upon first hearing, plausible. Only after reflecting and rereading does one see the lies exposed.
One must keep in mind that the masses only see what they have been told. With apologies to Ayn Rand- they do not think.
Philosophers (I refuse to add the adjective “true”) are people who leave societies to think. They are, and remain, unknown to the world. Practical or political philosophers stay in the city and support it with rhetoric (repeating conventional morality) and sophistry (making the weaker argument seem stronger than it is). When philosophers are not supporting the city (which is unnatural and, therefore, needs help to sustain itself), they are corrupting the youth by denying the Gods.
The works of Plato, Spinoza and other philosophers have escaped burning because they appeal to conventional morality with only glimmers of their true thoughts. Only in the Modern Age, witness Nietzsche and Aleister Crowley, that writers can be viewed as evil, anti-Christian and/or Satanic and not have their works expunged, but circulate freely. We measure the degree of Modernism by what is stated openly, not implied. This is due to the fact that most people are not careful readers. Because philosophers look to unchanging Nature as their standard, all philosophers have equal access to the same basic information. How they use this information, build upon it and record it for posterity is left to the individual philosopher. By having, and stressing, salutary morality, they insure their works will exist in the hand of the masses for a long time.
Nietzsche is not a radical philosopher. Fred has stated openly what others have only implied-Christianity is a detriment to the few strong people and the few strong (read intelligent) should rule the masses. Fred was a philologist. This fact must be in one’s mind at all times when slowly reading his commentaries. Fred says that knowledge has no obligation to ignorance. In the end, it is not Fred’s teachings, but the reader’s understanding, that prevents him from being understood by the majority. People brought up with the Christian morality of equality find these statements repugnant. Because Christianity is an unnatural construct, it needs to be supported like the city. Without the city, Jesus would not have fallen under civil punishment and death. Cities are not created out of equality. Cities are found upon a crime.
The USA is no exception to founding nations upon a criminal act, but the sophists make treason to the Crown acceptable. One must not think that all cities are founded upon Civil crime. There are enough examples of this from History, but the only manner that this statement could be true in all cases is to make it a crime against Nature. Every city is found upon the crime of not being found in Nature. Cities are started by an individual, usually through murder. The masses do not have the willpower to start cities-only select individuals.
Once we realize that cities are unnatural, and will provide a lifetime of work for practical Philosophers, then we can understand Plato’s contempt for “gentlemen”. That is his code word for people who cherish honor, bravery, nobility and will be willing to die for their city. Rereading Plato’s use of “gentleman” will confirm the veracity of this insight. Glaucon is a gentleman and this statement tells the reader all one needs to know about him.
In order to be “hold together”, the city must deny man his desires and punish any offender. Murder is condemned, but the city can retaliate and kill the murderer. Therefore, if a strong man want to kill his weaker neighbor, the city frowns on this natural behavior because it threaten the city-if the strong kill the weak, the city will be without the intelligent people and the masses. The strong would remain and the rationale for the city’s existence would only disappear.
As Zombies need brains and Vampires need life sustaining blood, so the city need philosophers and the vast majority of people to believe the lies of the pious frauds. Only in a rational society (a la Atlas Shrugged) would there be not need the fear of Divine Judgment (in this world or the next). The irrational religions were created so the city would not crumble from man’s desires. I suspect that the original cities were collections of rational people. The benefits are so great that any thinking person would gladly leave savage Nature for the city. Only later, when the city grew and included people who committed irrational acts, did the concept of the Gods and divine judgment come into existence.
The irony of irrational religions upholding the unnatural city cannot be lost on anyone.
People will continue to read Plato, however I warn the gentle reader to beware of his rhetoric and sophistry. The intrepid reader may wonder why the practical philosopher supports the city. All inhabitants, the philosopher included, benefit from the division of labor. The resultant time savings allows the philosopher more time to corrupt the disenfranchised youths of the city.
Plato is lying when he says the intelligent should not go to the doors of the wealthy. It would be ridiculous to say they should go to the poor, yet this is Plato’s implication.
In conclusion, Plato’s works are replete with lies, pious frauds, half truths, noble lies, appeals to authority and sham arguments. If, gentle reader, one can not understand these statements of facts, then consider yourself a gentleman. Plato’s secrets are kept safe between the lines.