In beginning a series of explanatory overviews of various schools of political philosophy, I have started to decide with the most ancient of the schools of thought: Conservatism. For English-speaking people, conservatism is a term that has infiltrated public consciousness but few seem to understand it. In particular the two greatest groups of offenders of … Continue reading Political Philosophy: What is Conservatism?
Plotinus’s second tractate of the first Ennead is a commentary over the division of virtues. This is commonplace in ancient philosophy and theology. For instance, Christianity divides the cardinal virtues (justice, prudence, fortitude, and temperance) and theological virtues (faith, hope, and love). Plotinus, in this section of his Enneads, separates the “civic virtues” with the … Continue reading Plotinus: The Virtues (Ennead 1.2)
The history of political philosophy is often divided between the classics (or ancients) in contradistinction to the moderns. Political philosophy, from the time of Socrates and Plato, has always been regarded as the queen of the philosophical enterprises because it most pertains to the question of being human. Hence, political philosophy is necessarily tied to … Continue reading The Great Divide: Political Philosophy, Ancient vs. Modern
One of the recurrent themes in Ibn Khaldun’s Muqaddimah is how human civilization follows nature life cycle patterns. This leads a cyclical view of history that is both tragic and filled with tragedy, irony, and one in which death is inescapable. In our sixth post reviewing the content of The Muqaddimah, we now turn to … Continue reading Reading Ibn Khaldun’s Muqaddimah, Part VI
As we continue examining Machiavelli’s The Prince, we turn to Chapters 10-19 which contains his most famous phrase of it is better to be feared than loved. Well, Machiavelli didn’t exactly say those specific words in that order, but his recommendations to the Prince is that it is better to command fear than to be … Continue reading Reading Machiavelli’s Prince, Part II
Plato’s Euthyphro is one of the more famous of the shorter dialogues. Several of the major themes are brought up in the dialogue include theology, ethics, and filialism. As such, we will briefly examine the major themes and their impact on philosophy. The beginning of the dialogue is Socrates seeking an answer to the question … Continue reading Plato’s Euthyphro
Besides political commentary, although Cicero’s ruminations about education and philosophy are still tied to his political philosophy, Cicero’s other great undercurrent of thought in the Republic is the relationship between philosophy and education with the health of one’s soul and how this pursuit of wisdom impacts how one acts and engages in the world. Naturally … Continue reading Cicero: On Education and Humanism