Ancient Wisdom for Modern TimesApr 14, 2016
Sunday we consider whether ancient wisdom -- namely that of the Greeks -- can be applied to modern problems. Most Greeks thought the earth was flat, that slavery was OK, and that women were second-class people. Plato thought democracy sucked, that poetry and drama were bad things, and that freedom of speech is a sort of joke. He even thought that Philosophers, of all people, should be Kings. So, one might ask, where’s the wisdom in all that?
But there’s also a lot the Greeks got right. We moderns would do well to appreciate and adopt some of their wisdom -- especially their profound understanding of the nature of human virtue and human vice.
Modern philosophy sort of lost track of that understanding somewhere along the way, under the influence of Kant, Bentham, and Mill. They were more focused on the right than the good.