by Jacob Bell
Editor, Classical Wisdom
May 15, 2019
You are born into a
political and social structure which has three classes. The
class you are born into depends upon your lineage and will
determine the career you have for your entire life...
This structure is upheld
by a noble lie which is embedded into each
citizen of the city-state.
The lie claims that each citizen, being a creation god, has
within him or her, one of three metals.
Those endowed with
gold during creation are part of the ruling class.
silver are part of the warrior class.
bronze are part of the craftsmen and farming class.
it is possible for
someone of the gold demarcation to beget a child of silver or
bronze status, and it is also possible, but rare, for someone of
the lower classes to beget a child of higher status.
It is also possible,
but difficult, for someone to move up the classes during their
Men and women receive the same education, and both are capable
of ascending to the highest class, because in this society, the
soul is more important than the structure of one's body.
A plan of eugenics is
established, and a careful strategy which seeks to breed the best
with the best is enforced.
Children are raised
collectively and according to political and social dictation.
The silver and gold classes are not allowed to marry or have a
They are also not
allowed to obtain private property or wealth.
They are sustained on
what is necessary and nothing more.
The bronze class is allowed more in way of material goods.
They receive the
biggest portion of their work as farmers and craftsmen, but they
have no say in how the city is run.
Rules and law come from
the top down.
Education is rigid and includes both academic studies and athletics.
What one is allowed to
read is dictated by the ruling class; mass censorship is put into
They will tell you
which poetry you can read, and they will destroy the rest.
They will rewrite the
works of great poets, allowing only the poetry that encourages
immoral and amoral works are destroyed.
Say goodbye to much of
The city-state is closed
off to immigration, and travel is discouraged.
Everything must be
closed off if this delicate and fragile political structure is
Once so-called real
knowledge is established, it must be permanent and unchanging.
Once the myths are in
place, they must be permanent and unquestionable.
structure of this society and attempting to enact change are
both viewed with contempt.
Before we continue, let's
reflect on the city-state outlined above, and ask ourselves,
if this is a society
that we would like to live in...
Further, let us ask
ourselves if this city-state sounds more like a harmonious
utopia or a tyrannical hell...
Got your answers locked in...?
As some of you might have already guessed, the city-state outlined
above comes from the dialogue titled
This political and social
structure is, for Plato, the ideal state...
Now, I can only speak for myself here - but I'm not much of a fan...
I value freedom and autonomy as a living-breathing individual, this
city-state sounds extremely oppressive and tyrannical. I don't think
anyone should dictate what I read, and to establish a city-state on
a foundation of self-recognized lies sounds altogether insane.
Although the gold-ruling class is to be comprised of
philosopher-kings, I don't think much philosophizing will be
going on. If knowledge is set in stone, there is no room for
creative or original thinking.
I think that the ruling-class would be more like computers. They are
taught a very specific mode of thinking, and mathematics is of the
utmost importance to their education.
They would be
programmed for certain thought patterns, and they would be
instructed to perpetuate the noble lies...
Plato's vision for a harmonious state - for a utopia - is just that,
It is part of his theory
of forms, which is to say,
not a part of this world.
In the same dialogue, Plato wants to claim that if his theory of
forms - his ideals - cannot be realized in this world, it is because
something is wrong with the world that we find ourselves in.
Plato denigrates this world for the transcendent world of forms:
he refuses to accept
He wants to exist free of the human
condition, free of body, desire, and sensation...
He wishes to exist as
a disembodied soul.
In trying to free himself
and his peers from the illusions of this world, he
unwittingly stumbles further into a fictional realm...
As much as he hated the thought, Plato was human, and even
the most recognized and decorated philosophers are wrong about some