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perceptions: they are their objective causes. The objects which the deceptive and vulgar organs of sense present to us we regard as real objects; while the Ideas which we acquire through reason, the messenger of the gods, are looked upon by us as fleeting shadows that come and go with self-consciousness! If we consider sensible objects as real, how much greater reason have we to assume the reality of the objects of the intellect! The general Ideas, expressed by our concepts, Good, Being, Identity, Man, etc., are therefore realities. Hence the name realism was inaptly applied to mediæval Platonism, which is diametrically opposed to modern realism. Platonic realism is thorough-going idealism, the theory which conceives Ideas as real beings,

What! Shall we say, Ideas are real beings; the Idea of being, more real than being; the Idea of the sun as real and even more real than the sun which shines upon us from the heavens; the Idea of man as real, and even much more real than Socrates, Antisthenes, and Euclides ! Common-sense rebels against such paradoxes. Socrates I see, but I do not see the man-type; I see beautiful men, beautiful statues, and beautiful paintings; I do not see the beautiful as such. I see moving bodies; I do not see motion as such, or the Idea of movement; I see living beings, but being or life in itself I cannot see anywhere. All these generalizations exist only in my mind, and have nothing real corresponding to them. Plato answers such objections by saying that when the sensualist sees beauti ful objects and just acts, and fails to perceive beauty as such, or justice as such, it is because he has the sense for the former, while his sense for Ideas or his reason is at fault. If this were sufficiently developed, it would no longer see the real reality (óvtws õv) in material existence, but in the Ideas; it would look for reality, not in the world of sense, but in the intelligible world. We consider general Ideas as the mental copies of sensible beings, whose reality we assume. The reverse is true; the Ideas are the models or the originals, and the natural beings or the individuals are the copies. The Ideas are both our thoughts (Wóyou) and the eternal objects (óvta) of these thoughts ; they are the thoughts of God, which no human intelligence can wholly reproduce, but which are none the less real, absolutely real.

Let us take the Idea of the beautiful, or beauty absolute (aŭtò kalóv). For the sensationalist, the beautiful, like the good and the just, is a quality which we abstract in thought (abstrahere) from the sensible objects, and which does not exist apart from these objects. For Plato, the beautiful is a reality; it is not only real, but much more real than all the beautiful things put together. Whatever endures is more lasting and therefore more real than that which passes away. Now, every beautiful object, be it a man or a statue, an act or an individual, is doomed to destruction and oblivion; beauty in itself is imperishable. Hence it must be more real than all the things the sensationalist calls beautiful. So, too, the type of man is more real than the particular man, because it remains unchanged, while the individual passes away; the Idea of the tree or flower is more real than a particular tree or a particular flower, because it endures. The Idea is what it expresses; it is this absolutely and without qualification; all we can say of the sensible object is that it has something of what the Idea is, that it partakes of it (wetéxei), while the Idea is undivided being

Let us again inquire into the beautiful, which is Plato's favorite Idea, and which he loves to identify with the good. Its manifestations in the sensible world are only relatively beautiful, that is, as compared with ugly objects ;

I Symposium, 211ff.

they are not beautiful when we compare them with more beautiful things. They are fair to-day, foul to-morrow, fair at one place, or in one relation, or in one point of view, or to one person; foul under different circumstances and in the judgment of other persons. Hence everything in the world of phenomenal beauty is relative, fleeting, and uncertain. Ideal beauty (aŭtò kalóv) is ever-lasting; without beginning and without end; without diminution and without decay; invariable, immutable, and absolute (MoVOELÒÈS aci óv); it is beautiful in all its relations and from all points of view; it is beautiful at all times and in all places and for all persons; it is pure and clear and unalloyed, and therefore transcends the powers of the imagination (είλικρινές, άμικτον, καθαρόν). It is neither a mere notion (, , ). nor purely individual knowledge (ουδέ τίς λόγος ουδε τις ÉTELOTÞun), but an eternal reality.

What is true of the beautiful is true of the great and the small, and of all Ideas in general. Simmias is tall as compared with Socrates, but small by the side of Phædo. The Idea of the great is great in all points of view; it is absolutely great. Hence to sum up: (1). The Ideas are real beings; (2) the Ideas are more real than the objects of sense; (3) the Ideas are the only true realities; the objects of sense possess a merely borrowed existence, a reality which they receive from the Ideas. The Ideas are the eternal patterns (Tapa deiyuara) after which the things of sense are made; the latter are the images (eidwra), the imitations, the imperfect copies (ouocámara, Hipnoels ). The entire sensible world is nothing but a symbol, an allegory, or a figure of speech. The meaning, the Idea expressed by the thing, alone concerns the philosopher. His interest in the sensible world is like our interest in the portrait of a friend of whose living presence we are deprived.

· Parmenides, 132: Timæus, 48

The world of sense is the copy of the world of Ideas; and conversely, the world of Ideas resembles its image; it forms a hierarchy. In our visible world there is a gradation of beings from the most imperfect creature to the perfect, sensible being, or the universe. The same holds true of the intelligible realm or the pattern of the world; the Ideas are joined together by means of other Ideas of a higher order; the latter, in turn, are embraced under others still more exalted, and so on; the Ideas constantly increase in generality and force, until we reach the top, the last, the highest, the most powerful Idea or the Good, which comprehends, contains, or summarizes the entire system, just as the visible universe, its copy, comprehends, contains, or summarizes all creatures. The relation existing between the Ideas and the highest Idea is analogous to that existing between objects of sense and Ideas. The objects, as we have said, partuke of the Ideas which they express; 1 they exist, not in themselves, but as reflections of their Ideas; they have no reality other than that which they receive from these Ideas; they are, in short, to these Ideas what accidents are to substances. Similarly, the Ideas of a lower order exist by themselves and as substances, only as compared to their visible copies. As compared to the highest Ideas, they cease to be substances; they become modes of the only really absolute Idea, the Idea of the Good; in the presence of this sun of the intelligible world, their individuality passes away as the stars vanish at the coming of the orb of day.

Hence the Ideas are both individual or self-existent atoms and members of a higher unity. Plato himself emphasizes the principle of the unity and connection of Ideas at the expense of their individuality; his disciples, on the other hand, seem to lay more stress on the

i Phædo, 100.

atomic and hypostatic character of the Ideas than on their unity. The clear and transparent Ideas of the master are, to use a figure of speech, precipitated by the school, and the Lyceum consequently censures the Academy for adding to the material world another wholly useless material world. The Ideas of Plato form a unity or an organism; they live a common life; and it is utterly impossible to separate them from each other and to make distinct beings of them. Indeed, they are independent of all time and space, that is, of the principle of separation and individualization. It is true, Plato speaks of the heavens as their abode, whither we must rise in order to contemplate them in their divine purity.3 But this heaven is not a part of the physical universe. The home of the Ideas is not the same as that of the things (aio OnTÓS TÓTTOS); it is sui generis, a place suitable to the nature of the Ideas, an ideal, intelligible place (vontòs Tómos); the home of the Ideas is mind (voûs), that is, the Idea as such. The Idea has no place outside of itself; it does not, like the atoms of Democritus, exist by virtue of empty space, but by itself (aŭtò kal' aúró). A prouder challenge could not be hurled at καθ' αυτό. materialism : Space which you conceive as a condition of reality is quite the reverse; it is the cause of non-being and impotence. The Idea is real because it is one and inextended, and because unity is force, power, or reality. Now, that which is concentrated in the Idea as in a mathematical point, is distributed in space and time, scattered over a thousand places and a thousand different moments, and consequently enfeebled, impoverished, and

· This substantialization of the Ideas is already noticeable in the Sophist, and has been regarded by some as an argument against the genuineness of the dialogue. (See Schaarschmidt, in the work cited above.)

Meno, 81. • Phaedrus, 247.

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