Love is worth it

In Plato’s The Symposium love -eros- is defined as a life fulfilment. We can also appreciate it in “Socrates’s Apology”, given the constant search of what we do not have. The search for Truth, by love is a constant search throughout a man’s life. Socrates defend the Truth by loving it as his ultimate life’s perfection.
A life worth living cannot be a liberation from the body, as Plato said. But to achieve truth by love as a lack of perfection and its constant search for it. We are not at peace with ourselves, because we are constantly seeking for hat we don’t have, and that is what love is. As Socrates states in the Symposyum:
“”What then is Love?”… He is by nature neither mortal nor immortal, but alive and flourishing at one moment when he is in plenty, and dead at another moment, and again alive by reason of his father’s nature. But that which is always flowing in is always flowing out, and so he is never in want and never in wealth; and, further, he is in a mean between ignorance and knowledge… Such, my dear Socrates, is the nature of the spirit Love. The error in your conception of him was very natural, and as I imagine from what you say, has arisen out of a confusion of love and the beloved, which made you think that love was all beautiful. For the beloved is the truly beautiful, and delicate, and perfect, and blessed; but the principle of love is of another nature, and is such as I have described.”” (Symposium 201d- 207b)
Now, once man realize that by eros’s myth, and the lack of something and the necessity to reach it. We find perfection and freedom from the body. He will only achieve his purpose based on the constant search for truth. Not by knowing everything there is, but by loving what he knows and what he doesn’t.
Socrates’s idea of the truth was fulfilled with eros. An exampe of it, is his death as imminent and unjust. He became conscious of his action and by loving the truth he couldn’t contradict himself. Then he found that his life has been worth living, not by possessing the Truth, but by loving it.  That is what death is about, to transcend by loving the truth.
“Human beings as an unhappy mix of two relatively independent things: mind and body[1]. The mind is by far the more important and nourished by theoretical occupations, and the body is dealt with in the practical or political realm. If the statesman has a knowledge, then it would be analogous to a shoemaker’s or doctor’s, for his business, like theirs, is to provide for the body’s needs. The statesman could only be an expert, therefore, in providing certain services for the body, all of which are indeed necessary because we have bodies, but none of which is relevant to the higher pursuits of the life of the mind… The youth has no notion of what an art or science would be that commands over and cares for ensouled things. For a mathematician, having a soul or being alive means simply being an animal and thus having a body.[2]
So when Buber says I-Thou, the relation that he has is between a conflict of what he is and what he gives to other. For men are not to be for themselves, but to be for others, that is what love means, not to own, but to give others what we are. There is a duality in ourselves, because we are not happy until we are given to others; not as an object but as a valuable being. As Kant says: “treat others not as means, but as an end”.
[1] Aristotle in the Metaphysics (Z, ll,1036b25)
[2] Scott R. Hemmenway. Pedagogy in the Myth of Plato’s “Statesman:” Body and Soul in Relation to Philosophy and Politics. History of Philosophy Quarterly, Vol. 11, No. 3 (Jul., 1994), pp. 253-268 University of Illinois Press on behalf of North American Philosophical Publications. URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27744627. 27/05/2014 15:42
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s