Looking for Wisdom
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Looking for Wisdom

How Plato played Aristotle

A medieval Persian tale

Madhu Khanazad (attr.) Plato charming the wild animals with music, Khamsa of Nizami, Mughal, 1595 -6, f.208, British Library. Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

This story from a 12th century Persian text is about music, harmony, philosophy, and the beef between Plato and Aristotle.

It’s a curious image. The philosopher Plato, dressed in a turban and a sash, sits before a pipe organ and plays sweet tunes. Meanwhile, around him lies a catatonic tribe of lions, tigers, antelopes, leopards, deer, rhinos, cranes…




Philosophy for insatiably curious: the greatest philosophers and the most intriguing philosophies from across the world.

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Will Buckingham

Will Buckingham

Writer & philosopher. PhD. Stories & ideas to make the world a better place. HELLO, STRANGER (Granta 2021): BBC R4 Book of the Week. Twitter @willbuckingham

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