Verse > Anthologies > Robert Bridges, ed. > The Spirit of Man: An Anthology

Robert Bridges, ed. (1844–1930).  The Spirit of Man: An Anthology.  1916.
From Phaedo

Plato (427?–347 B.C.)
.. HAVE 1 we not then found .. a narrow path [of thought] which promises to lead us and our argument to the conclusion that while we are in the body, and while the soul is contaminated with its evils, our desire will never be thoroughly satisfied: and our desire, we say, is of the Truth. For thousand-fold are the troubles that the body gives us…. It fills us full of loves, and lusts and fears, with all kinds of delusions and rank nonsense; and in very truth, as men say, it so disposes us that we cannot think wisely at all, never a whit. Nay, all wars, factions, and fighting have no other origin than this same body and its lusts … We must set the soul free of it; we must behold things as they are, and then, belike, we shall attain the wisdom that we desire, and of which we say we are lovers: not while we live but after death, as the argument shows; .. For then and not till then will the soul be parted from the body, and exist in herself alone … And thus having got rid of the foolishness of the body we shall, it would seem, be pure and hold converse with the pure, and shall in our own selves have complete knowledge of the Incorruptible, which is, I take it, no other than the very Truth.  1
Note 1. Plato. ‘Phaedo’, 66. [Trans. R. Bridges.] In my renderings of Plato I have aimed at pleasing myself. I used Jowett’s version wherever it suited me; and sought expert assistance when I was in uncertainty. [back]
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