Paul's Passing Thoughts

More Questions About Plato; This Time From Bob

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on December 15, 2016

Revised and Edited.


My Conclusion of Plato/Aristotle differences: Plato—”Know your place;” Aristotle—”Knowledge is power.” But Christianity (Catholicism more influenced by Aristotle) Protestantism is most influenced by Plato. Calvin learned this from St. Augustine, St. Augustine learned this from Plato and everyone was influenced by the original philosopher King Socrates. Got this right?


Pretty close. The Reformation was sparked by the Catholic Church’s shift away from Platonism to Aristotle. The Reformation was NEVER about the Bible; that’s just propaganda that would even make the Chicoms blush.

Socrates believed that wisdom was intuitive which makes him closer to Aristotle in that regard. However, like Plato, he believed man can only obtain wisdom by going beyond the 5 senses. Reality is not knowable; that is, Plato’s trinity of the true, good, and beautiful, but wisdom for society’s best life now can be obtained by philosophical study that transcends the material world which is merely shadows of the true forms.

Aristotle believed that the material world is reality. Even though he shared Socrates’ view of an epistemological level playing field, he rejected Socrates’ metaphysics. Plato added caste epistemology to Socrates’ metaphysics. He had to in order to return to Athens because the idea that everyone possesses intuitive knowledge got Socrates executed. When 90% of the population are the slaves, it’s a bad idea to level the playing field.

The Catholic Church utilizes a hybrid integration of Aristotle and Plato. Pope Francis is of the Platonist persuasion while other popes are going to be more of the Aristotle persuasion. Before the Reformation, Catholics didn’t colabor with the Church to get into heaven (Platonist influence); post-Reformation they do (more of an Aristotle influence), but it’s still salvation by Church membership. To this very day, even though it is dressed up in theology, the tiff between the two churches is Plato versus Aristotle.

Meanwhile, most parishioners put their money in the plate every week thinking it’s really about the Bible. Nope.

Now, from a Catholic perspective, their allegiance to the Church is based solely on Platonist authority. If the pope says it…that settles it. Period. That’s Plato’s The Republic straight-up. The good Catholic parishioner or producer class just doesn’t question the pope. It matters little what the Church teaches because salvation is through allegiance to the Church no matter what it teaches. That being said, people are still perplexed in regard to the horrible things popes say and do.

However, what they say and do makes perfect sense if you know anything about Plato. For instance, Plato believed the purest love is between a man and a boy; so, all of the stuff going on with priests in that regard shouldn’t surprise us. That’s a primary example among many.

2 Responses

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  1. johnimmel said, on December 15, 2016 at 8:51 PM

    Might i recommend my TANC 2014 and some of 2016 … i address this at length in both sessions. and i have been discussing this very thing in most every conference since 2012.

    Socrates did preceded Plato but he is not the source of Plato’s philosophical framework. Plato was an originator in scope and integration. As was Aristotle. Both men are wholly unique in world history.

    The specific progression goes Plato >>> Cynics/Stoics >>Plotinus>>Augustine.


  2. John (Not Immel, Andy) said, on December 17, 2016 at 8:47 AM

    You keep on asking, Bob, so that I can learn and do my own research too. (John Immel is a legend on these matters).

    Paul, this specific article got me thinking: Did anyone of these man geniuses (Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Calvin (thingus be upon him), Bugs Bunny, etc., ever learn from Christ? From the Bible? From God? Even though that were around before Christ? In my best Hebrew, I can say; NO.

    And it shows.


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