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[532a] “‘No’ is surely the answer to that too.” “This, then, at last, Glaucon,” I said, “is the very law which dialectics1 recites, the strain which it executes, of which, though it belongs to the intelligible, we may see an imitation in the progress2 of the faculty of vision, as we described3 its endeavor to look at living things themselves and the stars themselves and finally at the very sun. In like manner, when anyone by dialectics attempts through discourse of reason and apart from all perceptions of sense4 to find his way to the very essence of each thing and does not desist

1 Cf. Phileb. 58 D, Meno 75 C-D, Charm. 155 A, Cratyl. 390 C, and on 533 B, pp. 200 f., note f.

2 This is not a literal rendering, but gives the meaning.

3 Cf. 516 A-B. Plato interprets his imagery again here and in B infra.

4 Cf. p. 180, note a, and p. 187, note c. Cf. also 537 D, and on 476 A ff. Cf. Bergson, Introduction to Metaphysics, p. 9: “Metaphysics, then, is the science which claims to dispense with symbols”; E. S. Robinson, Readings in General Psych. p. 295: “A habit of suppressing mental imagery must therefore characterize men who deal much with abstract ideas; and as the power of dealing easily and firmly with these ideas is the surest criterion of a high order if intellect . . . “; Pear, Remembering and Forgetting, p. 57: “He (Napoleon) is reported to have said that ‘there are some who, from some physical or moral peculiarity of character, form a picture (tableau) of everything. No matter what knowledge, intellect, courage, or good qualities they may have, these men are unfit to command”; A. Bain, Mind, 1880, p. 570: “Mr. Galton is naturally startled at finding eminent scientific men, by their own account, so very low in the visualizing power. His explanation, I have no doubt, hits the mark; the deficiency is due to the natural antagonism of pictorial aptitude and abstract thought.”; Judd, Psychology of High School Subjects, p.921: “It did not appear on superficial examination of the standings of students that those who can draw best are the best students from the point of view of the teacher of science.”

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