humanity

Humanity topics include pieces on the real lives of politicians, legislators, activists, women in politics and the everyday voter.

  • Creative Writing
    Published about 9 hours ago
    Thrasymachus

    Thrasymachus

    Thrasymachus was an Antiquity Greek sophist better remembered as a Plato's Republic hero. Thrasymachus was a Chalcedonian citizen, on the Bosphorus. His life seems to have been spent at Athens as a sophist although the precise essence of his research and thesis remains uncertain. He is credited with an improvement in the rhythmic nature of the Greek oratory, particularly the use of paeonic rhythm in prose, and a greater appeal through gesture to the emotions. Aristophanes makes Thrasymachus, in a passing joke from a forgotten play dated to 427 BCE, echoes what is more specifically dateable. From this passage Nils Rauhut from the Internet Archive of Philosophy indicates that Thrasymachus may have taught many years before this point at Athens. A passage from Clement of Alexandria offers some extra meaning when comparing Thrasymachus with the Archelaus of Macedonia. Hence Rauhut notes specifically that in the last three decades of the 5th century, Thrasymachus was the most influential one. Dillon and Gergel propose the alternative hypothesis that the speech was written by Herodes Atticus, 2nd-century CE, to whom we have extracts similar in nature to Clement's text which reads as authentically 5th-century, showing a detailed knowledge of Thessalian politics. In Aristotle's Politics there is a man of the same name who overthrew the monarchy at Cyme but little is known about this case, nor can it be said with any degree of certainty that they are the same entity. In his Nuanced Refutations Aristotle again makes reference to a Thrasymachus, where he credits him with a crucial role in the growth of rhetorical philosophy. In addition, this is what happened with regard to rhetorical discourses and almost all other arts: for those who invented their roots, they only advanced them in a limited way, while today's celebrities are descendants of a long sequence of people who created them little by little and thereby formed them into their present form, Tisias coming after the first founders, Dillon and Gergel. More specifically written in the Rhetoric, Aristotle introduces a witty simile to Thrasymachus. Dillon and Gergel suggest this may justify Thrasymachus's choice of Plato as the "combative and bombastic adherent to his Republic's 'truth is true' doctrine." Against this theory, though, scholar Angie Hobbs suggests that this Thrasymachus 'purpose may be merely to highlight current hypocrisy, rather than applaud its abuse. Plato quotes Thrasymachus as a good rhetorician within his Phaedrus but assigns nothing important to him. The Byzantine Suda gives a brief description of the role of Thrasymachus as a rhetorical theorist. A Chalcedonian sophist, of the Chalcedon Bithynian. He was the first to discover time and colon, and he invented the new sort of rhetoric. He was the philosopher Plato's pupil, and the rhetoric of the Isocrates. The second sentence, Dillon and Gergel note, is an irrational argument, both in reference to Plato and Isocrates. We suggest a lacuna in the text in which Thrasymachus is considered another's pupil, and a rival to Plato and Isocrates. In his On Isaeus, Dionysius of Halicarnassus praises Thrasymachus for his numerous rhetorical skills, calling Thrasymachus sweet, clever and creative and capable of expressing as he pleases, either with terseness or an eruption of vocabulary. Nevertheless, Dionysus regarded Thrasymachus as a second-rate orator despite the incisive and beautiful Lysias, leaving no forensic speeches to posterity, merely manuals and display-talks. The present value of Thrasymachus derives in large part from his being a character in the Republic. In Leo Strauss's opinion, Thrasymachus and his idea of justice reflect the city and its laws, and are therefore in a way contradictory to Socrates and philosophy in general. As an intellectual, however, Thrasymachus possibly aligned enough with the philosopher to behave in favor of philosophy in the area.
  • Creative Writing
    Published about 9 hours ago
    Simplicius of Cilicia

    Simplicius of Cilicia

    Simplicius of Cilicia was one of the last Neoplatonists to be a student of Ammonius Hermiae and Damascus. He was among the pagan scholars that Justinian persecuted in the early 6th century, and was forced to seek asylum at the Persian court for a while before being welcomed back into the empire. He'd written thoroughly on Aristotle's plays. While not all his works are original compositions but commentaries on Aristotle and other authors, his scholarly and prodigious expertise renders him the last great philosopher of pagan antiquity. His dissertation has maintained significant knowledge from earlier scholars, who otherwise may have been overlooked. Simplicius was an Ammonius Hermiae and Damascus pupil, and thus one of the last representatives of the Neoplatonist school. Secondary offices are in Athens. This has been the subject of the last attempts to preserve the Hellenistic order against Islamic invasions. Imperial edicts issued against paganism in the 5th century provided civilian protection against personal heathen ill-treatment. In the year 528 Emperor Justinian had ordered the expulsion of pagans from government offices. Some of their assets confiscated, others had been put to death. The declaration stated that were they to be removed from the Kingdom if they did not convert to Christianity within three months. Furthermore, Athens discouraged the exercise of ethics and jurisprudence any more. Possibly even the wealth of the Platonist Academy, priced at the time of Proclus at more than 1000 pieces of gold, was confiscated; at least Justinian deprived the physicians and teachers of the liberal arts of the provision-money provided to them by the former emperors and took money raised by the people for shows and other civic purposes. Seven philosophers, including Simplicius, Eulamius, Priscian and others, with Damascus at their side, the last president of the Platonist school in Athens, agreed to seek shelter in the court of the famous Persian king Chosroes, who ascended the throne in 531. And their expectations collapsed. Chosroes, concluded in a peace treaty with Justinian c 533 The philosophers were to be able to return without anxiety and to continue the practices which they left behind. We will not know much about the real experiences with the seven thinkers. We may not know where Simplicius lived and where he studied. This is proven not only by the address given to his hearers in Aristotle's commentary on the Physica Auscultatio, as well as the title of his commentary on the Divisions. He had been educated partly as a Damascus student in Alexandria under Ammonius, partly in Athens; and it was presumably in one of these two towns that he eventually took up residence; for, with the exception of those towns and Constantinople, it would have been difficult to find a town with the collections of books that he wanted, and he could not have gone to Constantinople. There are no definite allusions about his personal history in Simplicius's writings, particularly his migration to Persia. Only at the end of his description of the Epictetus 'treatise does Simplicius, with appreciation, discuss the consolation he had sought in these ethical contemplations under tyrannical tyranny; which may indicate that it was written during or shortly after the persecutions described above. The following works are his remarks on Aristotle's de Caelo, Physica Auscultatio, and Divisions as well as a commentary on the Epictetus Enchiridion. There is also a commentary on Aristotle's de Anima under his signature, but it is simplistic in stylistic terms and lacks the breadth of historical details normally used by Simplicius. Priscian of Lydia suggested it was written even though some scholars found it genuine. Before that, the commentary on de Caelo was written on the Physica Auscultatio, but presumably not in Alexandria, since he cites an astronomical discovery made by Ammonius during his stay in that city. After Damascus died, and even after his return from Persia, Simplicius wrote his commentary on the Physica Auscultatio
  • Chris Gruchacz
    Published a day ago
    The Fundamentalist Fallacy

    The Fundamentalist Fallacy

    “When the fundamentalist wins, the world enters a dark age"
  • Creative Writing
    Published 2 days ago
    Aristotle

    Aristotle

    Throughout the Classical period Aristotle had been a Greek philosopher and polymath in Ancient Greece. He was the founder of the Lyceum, and Aristotelian Theory and Philosophy's Peripatetic School. Along with his teacher Plato, he was called the father of Western Philosophy. His research covers biology, genetics, zoology, metaphysics, philosophy, ethics, painting, poetry, theatre, writing, rhetoric, psychology, linguistics, economics, history and economy. Aristotle gave a complex interpretation of the other theories that existed before him, and it was from his teachings above all that the West extracted his philosophical lexicon, as well as the tools of questions and examination. His philosophy has since had a tremendous impact on almost every area of knowledge in the West, and remains the subject of contemporary academic debate. None of his own lives are known. Aristotle was born in the town of Stagira, in northern Greece. His father, Nicomachus, died when Aristotle was a child, and had been raised by a guardian. Around the age of seventeen or eighteen he entered the Plato Academy in Athens, and stayed there until he was thirty-seven. Soon after the death of Plato Aristotle left Athens and tutored Alexander the Great at the behest of Philip II of Macedon beginning in 343 BC. In the Lyceum, he founded a library that helped him produce some of his hundreds of papyrus scrolls. Although Aristotle wrote many elegant treatises and dialogues for publication, only about a third of his original writing, none of which was intended for publication, has survived. Physical science influenced Aristotle's opinions on the scholarship of the mediaeval period. Their influence extended from the Late Antiquity and Early Middle Ages into the Renaissance, and was not continually replaced until the Enlightenment and philosophies such as classical mechanics. Any of Aristotle's zoological observations, found in his biology, such as on the reproductive neck of the octopus, were disbelieved until the 19th century. His studies include the earliest recorded systematic logic analysis which was studied by mediaeval writers including Peter Abelard and John Buridan. Aristotle's influence on logic, however, continued well into the 19th century. He influenced Islamic philosophy as well as Christian theology during the Middle Ages, especially Early Church Neoplatonism and scholastic practise of the Catholic Church. Aristotle has been regarded by mediaeval Muslim thinkers as "The First Scholar," and by mediaeval Christians such as Thomas Aquinas as the fundamental philosopher. Though still dominant, the theory sparked a revived interest in the recent development of virtue ethics, for instance in the work of Alasdair MacIntyre and Philippa Foot. In Prior Analytics, Aristotle is credited with the first study of formal logic, and his invention of it became the dominant style of Western logic until advances of mathematical logic in the 19th century. In Pure Reason's Critique Kant believed it had been inferred with Aristotle's logic. Contrary to his teacher Plato, Aristotle's philosophy is against the abstract. Aristotle's ontology positions the absolute in particulars, events in the cosmos, while Plato's ideal is a purely recurring concept that imitates real things. To Aristotle, shape is always based on what phenomena, but in a particular substance it is instantiated. Aristotle's empirical theory encompasses a broad variety of natural phenomena beyond those already being investigated by biology, psychology, and other natural sciences. "Physical philosophy" is, in Aristotle's words, a branch of philosophy that addresses real life phenomena, including fields that can today be considered physics, psychology, and other natural sciences. Aristotle's work encompassed virtually every aspect of metaphysical inquiry. Aristotle makes philosophy coextensive, in the broadest sense, with logic, which he most also describe as intelligence. Remember, though, that the use of the term analysis has a meaning distinct from that which the term science method offers.
  • Creative Writing
    Published 2 days ago
    Alcibiades

    Alcibiades

    Alcibiades, son of Cleinias, from the deme of Scambonidae, was a prominent Athenian statesman, orator, and general. He was the last famed descendant of his parents 'aristocratic family, the Alcmaeonidae, who had fallen from favour after the Peloponnesian War. He played an significant part in the second half of the war as a diplomatic advisor, military officer, and dictator. During the Peloponnesian War Alcibiades had changed its political allegiance several times. In the early 410s BC he advocated robust foreign policies in his native Athens and was a leading advocate of the Sicilian Invasion but he fled to Sparta after his political opponents laid charges of sacrilege against him. He served in Sparta as a political counsellor, organising or coordinating a great many big actions against Athens. Nevertheless, in Sparta too, Alcibiades soon made close friends, and felt compelled to rebel against Persia. There he served as an adviser to the satrap of the Tissaphernes until his military Athenian allies took his memories. He then spent a few years as an Athenian general, but his opponents eventually tried to oust him a second time. Scholars have indicated that had the Sicilian expedition been under Alcibiades rather than Nicias 'command, the expedition would not have met its final catastrophic fate. Alcibiades played a key role in the undoing of Athens during the years during which he commanded Sparta; Decelea's overthrow and the revolts of other important Athenian subjects happened either at his behest or under his influence. Upon returning to his home town, however, he played a central role in a series of Athenian victories that eventually led Sparta to make peace with Athens. He favoured unorthodox tactics, and primarily won over cities by treachery or coercion rather than by attack. Alcibiades 'military and diplomatic abilities also proved valuable to whichever state his loyalty still held, but his propensity to attract powerful enemies ensured that he never stuck in one place for a long time; and by the end of the war he had begun to rekindle in the early 410's, his days of diplomatic prominence were a bygone memory. Since signing the Nicias Agreement, Alcibiades first rose to notoriety when he began advocating radical Athenian politics. The settlement, an uneasy truce signed halfway through the Peloponnesian War between Sparta and Athens, came at the culmination of seven years of conflict during which neither of the two sides had gained a decisive advantage. Historians Arnold W. Gomme and Raphael Sealey argue that, as Thucydides writes, Alcibiades was irritated by the Spartans negotiating the peace for Nicias and Laches, ignoring him because of his youth. Disputes over understanding of the treaties forced the Spartans to send formally authorised delegates to Athens to resolve all matters pending. Initially these delegates were well received by the Athenians, but Alcibiades met secretly with them before they spoke to the ecclesia and warned them that the council was haughty and with high ambitions. He encouraged them to give up their political power to represent Sparta, and instead to encourage him to assist them through his position in Athenian politics. The delegates accepted and were isolated from Nicias, inspired by Alcibiades, who truly wished to reach an agreement with the Spartans. During the next day's meeting, Alcibiades asked them what powers Sparta had given them to negotiate and, as agreed, they replied that they had not come with full and fair arms. It was in complete contrast to what they had said the day before and Alcibiades took advantage of this moment to condemn their actions, cast doubt on their goals and damage their prestige. This strategy boosted Alcibiades 'reputation and thereby embarrassed Nicias, and subsequently Alcibiades was appointed chancellor.
  • Robert Gitau
    Published 3 days ago
    Police Brutality: What Fuels Police Militarization and Brutality in Kenya?
  • Joella Terry
    Published 3 days ago
    Will We Survive Operation COVID-19?

    Will We Survive Operation COVID-19?

    One question that has been going around lately in every city and every household is will we survive the coronavirus epidemic? Are we going to be around for our next birthday the children may ask or will I be around to see my kids graduate some adults are wondering.
  • Cheryl E Preston
    Published 3 days ago
    Buckingham Palace silent on whether or not Queen Elizabeth II has been tested for coronavirus

    Buckingham Palace silent on whether or not Queen Elizabeth II has been tested for coronavirus

    According to USA Today, Buckingham Palace is remaining silent regarding whether or not Queen Elizabeth II or her husband Prince Phillip have been tested for the coronavirus. The 93 year old monarch had contact with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on March 11, and her son Prince Charles on the 12th. Both men tested positive for Covid-19 and have self quarantined. The Duchess of Cornwall, Camilla Parker Bowles was tested and it came back negative. Royal watchers are concerned about the Queen and her 98 year old husband because their advanced years put them at risk for serious health issues should they have the dreaded disease, but thus far there has been no news.
  • Amber Jessup
    Published 6 days ago
    Shifting The Paradigm

    Shifting The Paradigm

    The structures that we’ve so heavily relied on to keep everything afloat is no longer suffice and Spirit has asked us all to use this time to reflect on how those structures have elicited behaviors of egoism.
  • Jessica Fontaine
    Published 8 days ago
    All of you are Racists

    All of you are Racists

    Sorry, it's true. We're all a little racist. Racism isn't always the violent, vocal trash we see in the news. It can be low-key and within our own minds. It's normal to have our best interests in mind, but think about people who don't even have a voice. It's easy for us to say that life is pretty good when we're not getting attacked by police officers every day, supervised by employees when we're walking around in stores, or stopped from enjoying an afternoon walk. We often don't think about those people who need our thoughts the most.
  • Claire Raymond
    Published 10 days ago
    A Red Cross On The Door: The Year The World Shut Down.

    A Red Cross On The Door: The Year The World Shut Down.

    Let me paint you a little picture. It’s December 31st and people all over the world are making their new year’s resolutions. Some people promised themselves a vacation, some wanted to lose weight, and others just wanted to spend more time together. So they set the wheels in motion. Wheels that unbeknown to them would soon come to a screeching halt. Because as these people were making their plans, others had already put theirs into action. They had booked that vacation they promised themselves and were travelling the world. 
  • Walter Rhein
    Published 13 days ago
    Republicans Abandon Their Values Under Adversity

    Republicans Abandon Their Values Under Adversity

    A few months ago the United States had a bustling economy with a record setting stock market. Today, all the gains from the last three years are gone, and most of the nation is practicing social distancing. Schools, restaurants, and non-essential businesses have closed their doors and we face a global recession.