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By no means.Athenian
So then the teaching which refuses to separate the pleasant from the just helps, [663b] if nothing else, to induce a man to live the holy and just life, so that any doctrine which denies this truth is, in the eyes of the lawgiver, most shameful and most hateful; for no one would voluntarily consent to be induced to commit an act, unless it involves as its consequence more pleasure than pain. Now distance has the effect of befogging the vision of nearly everybody, and of children especially; but our lawgiver will reverse the appearance by removing the fog,1 [663c] and by one means or another—habituation, commendation, or argument—will persuade people that their notions of justice and injustice are illusory pictures, unjust objects appearing pleasant and just objects most unpleasant to him who is opposed to justice, through being viewed from his own unjust and evil standpoint, but when seen from the standpoint of justice, both of them appear in all ways entirely the opposite.Clinias
So it appears.Athenian
In point of truth, which of the two judgements shall we say is the more authoritative,—that of the worse soul or that of the better.Clinias
That of the better, undoubtedly. [663d] Athenian
Undoubtedly, then, the unjust life is not only more base and ignoble, but also in very truth more unpleasant, than the just and holy life.Clinias
It would seem so, my friends, from our present argument.Athenian
And even if the state of the case were different from what it has now been proved to be by our argument, could a lawgiver who was worth his salt find any more useful fiction than this (if he dared to use any fiction at all in addressing the youths for their good), or one more effective in persuading all men to act justly in all things [663e] willingly and without constraint?Clinias
Truth is a noble thing, Stranger, and an enduring; yet to persuade men of it seems no easy matter.Athenian
Be it so; yet it proved easy to persuade men of the Sidonian fairy-tale,2 incredible though it was, and of numberless others.Clinias
The tale of the teeth that were sown, and how armed men sprang out of them. Here, indeed, the lawgiver has a notable example
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