Journal entry 7

Thursday February 25, 2016

1.5 hours of class time

Daimonion — divinity spirit

Athena is serving as a restraining divinity.

Socrates is a leader in the sense that he has a following. May be silent in the room but when he does speak his opinion is valued. Known for being very wise and disciplined. Questions we came up with in class were as follows: Is being curious the same as being a leader? Do leaders HAVE to be direct or can they lead unintentionally? I believe that one can become a leader indirectly, for example my older brother who I look to does not always intend on being a great leader nor does he know that I watch him and take value in many of his actions. However he is still a leader in the sense that he has a follower who looks up to him for guidance. Hence I believe influence to be

of more importance than authority. Just because one has authority, such as a teacher does not mean they will have an impact on your life. The influencer tends to have a better/closer relationship with the influence than another authoritative figure. They are able to communicate

their intentions so that the followers are able to understand the meanings of such actions. Authoritative figures may act upon something and give no reason behind it, causing their followers to speculate their intentions.

Alcibiades

Socrates

Master of studied eloquence

Simple speaker, truth is his eloquence

Good at reading emotions of others

Does not read others emotions

Political leader

Assues political life

Rule/law breaker, flees from city

Obeys the law and follows wishes of city

Engages in instrumental/ reactive aggression

Anti-aggression, rather be harmed than harm others

Lover of status and honor — philonikia, philoproton

Lover of wisdom

Leads by bringing pride to his city — physically safe and materially prosperous

Leads unintentionally — making city right with the gods

Impious

Charged with impiety but is actually impious

Predatory for profiting

Lets others profit from him

Pathological liar

Truth teller

Moves around a lot in career — Sparta and Persia

Never left Athens other than for military campaigns

Wealthy, very lavish and pompous

Dresses modesty, lives off favors from others

Similarities

Both have a sense of grandiosity — believes they are very special and are often misunderstood

Both bold and defiant

Anti-democratic

Characterized as being emotional shallow​

Saturday February 27, 2016

2.5 hours

Read The Apology of Socrates by Xenophon

Socrates was more grandiose in Plato’s version, his wisdom was much more pronounced. Xenophon’s version was less condescending than Plato’s. He did not propose outlandish outcomes but rater believed that robbery, theft, and murder were the common crimes that warranted the death penalty. Socrates claims he is person who knows nothing in Plato’s version, so it would be contradictory if. he were to have a positive Daimonion leading him. In Xenophon’s version the Oracle at Delphi tells Caerephron that no one was more just, free or prudent than Socrates. He agrees and does not go about proving the Oracle false. Xenophon’s Socrates helps people out on a more personal level than that of Plato’s. he has a desire to go out and aid those in need, not in a civic sense but instead on a more personal basis. However both are pretty loose fabrications.

Tuesday March 1, 2016

1.5 hours of class time

Discussed The Apology of Socrates by Xenophon

Written around 365 BCE

Xenophon was known in the ancient world as a philosopher but was certaintly not as influential as Plato, but rather as a contemporary. Served as a knight in the Athenian cavalry and was responsible for leading 10,000 Greeks out of Persia. Therefore he was unable to attend the Trial of Socrates. The Cyropaedia “the education of Cyrus” was one of Xenophon’s master works.

Tuesday March 1, 2016

1.5 hours reading Biography of Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius was born on 26 April 121 and served a Roman Emperor from 161 to 180 where he was the last of the Five Good Emperors. Meditations described how to find and preserve equanimity in the midst of conflict by following nature as a source of guidance and inspiration. Although this piece gives us insight into his personal life it does not make many references to wordly affairs. Aurelius’ most prominent scholarly hobby was Stoicism, a theory that underscored destiny, reason and poise. Unlike the peaceful and prosperous rule of Antoninus, the joint reign of the two brothers was marked by war and disease. Marcus Aurelius, however, is not best remembered for the wars he waged, but for his contemplative nature and his rule driven by reason.

Wednesday March 2, 2016

3 hours

Read and paraphrased the first book of Meditations by Marcus Aurelius.

I. From his family

  • His grandfather Verus has taught him to be gentle and meek, refraining from strong emotions such as anger and passion.
  • • From the fame and remembrance of his father he has learned the behavior and characteristics needed to become a man.
  • • From his mother he has learned to be bountiful and religious while intending to do no evil. She has also instilled the importance of moderation in diet and wealth, without living too lavishly.
  • • To the great-grandfather education was a priority as he believed he should be schooled frequently, with good and able teachers to teach him at home.
  • II. He who raised Marcus Aurelius
  • • Taught him to endure labor, to do things himself rather than by others, avoid addiction to team sports, limit wants and needs, and to be truthful, not easily admitting to any slander.
  • III. Diognetus
  • • Taught him not to be offended with other men’s liberty of speech, and to apply himself upon philosophy. Aurelius thanks him for increasing his interests in philosophy as a youth, writing dialogues and listening to speeches of Bacchius, Tandasis, and Marcianus.
  • IIII. Rusticus
  • • Aurelius realized that his life needed to be reformed and cured. He showed him that his life ashould be improved and that his pursuit of philosophy should be without ostentation. He believed he should avoid reading superficially and should instead focus on the study of rhetoric, poetry and elegant language. He learned to write letters without using any affection, or curiosity and to easily forgive those who did him wrong.
  • V. Apollonius
  • • Taught him liberty and to always remain the same person despite the pains such as the loss of a child or a fatal disease. He also learned how to receive favors and kindness from friends so that he doesn’t come across as an insensible and ungrateful man.
  • VI. Sextus
  • • From Sextus he learned to live according to nature, without affectation, and to accommodate to all sorts of people. Learned not to bear an abundance of anger or any other passion, but be able to observe Stoic Apathhia or impassionedness, while still being tenderhearted.
  • VII. Alexander the grammarian
  • • Not to reprehend any man of barbarism or solecism in a harsh way but to gently and carefully correct them with admiration and thought.

VIII. Fronto

• He learned that tyrants are filled with envy and hypocrisy and that it was a common characteristic for the nobles to be born with a lack of affection.

IX. Alexander the Platonic

• Taught him to not put off duties which he owes to his friends and acquaintances with the pretense of other important business.

X. Catulus

• To listen to a friends criticism regardless if he believes them to be right or not. If he believes such accusations to be false then to provide knowledge to change his former disposition. Also taught to speak well of teachers holding them in high regard, and to love his children whole-heartedly.

XI. Brother Severus

• To be loving to everyone who dwells in his house and to seek justice and equality in the government. Seeked the importance of friendship and generosity.

XII. Maximus

• Taught to be cheerful and courageous during accidents and difficult times, such as illness. Work diligently in business affairs without complaint and to not be too fast but also never too slow. In character he leaned to be forgiving, honest and pleasant.

XIII. Father

• Aurelius observed his meekness and diligence. Was taught to readily listen to any man while holding himself in manner of honor and dignity. Taught cheerfulness, repressed flattery, to be socialable, to care for his body, not be concerned with external beauty and to have moderation in all things.

XIIII. The gods

• Thanks the gods for having good parents, grandfathers, masters and kinsmen. To not act in a harsh or rash manner as to offend the gods. Enjoys the simplicity of life and looks to help others while avoiding the sophists.

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