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[644a] to which, as I suppose, our present argument would confine the term “education” whereas an upbringing which aims only at money-making or physical strength, or even some mental accomplishment devoid of reason and justice, it would term vulgar and illiberal and utterly unworthy of the name “education.” Let us not, however, quarrel over a name, but let us abide by the statement we agreed upon just now, that those who are rightly educated become, as a rule, good, [644b] and that one should in no case disparage education, since it stands first among the finest gifts that are given to the best men; and if ever it errs from the right path, but can be put straight again, to this task every man, so long as he lives, must address himself with all his might.

You are right, and we agree with what you say.

Further, we agreed long ago that if men are capable of ruling themselves, they are good, but if incapable, bad.

Quite true.

Let us, then, re-state more clearly [644c] what we meant by this. With your permission, I will make use of an illustration in the hope of explaining the matter.

Go ahead.

May we assume that each of us by himself is a single unit?


And that each possesses within himself two antagonistic and foolish counsellors, whom we call by the names of pleasure and pain?

That is so.

And that, besides these two, each man possesses opinions about the future, which go by the general name of “expectations”; and of these, that which precedes pain bears the special name of “fear,” and that which precedes pleasure the special name of “confidence”; [644d] and in addition to all these there is “calculation,” pronouncing which of them is good, which bad; and “calculation,” when it has become the public decree of the State, is named “law.”

I have some difficulty in keeping pace with you: assume, however, that I do so, and proceed.

I am in exactly the same predicament.

Let us conceive of the matter in this way. Let us suppose that each of us living creatures is an ingenious puppet of the gods, whether contrived by way of a toy of theirs or for some serious purpose—for as to that we know nothing; [644e] but this we do know, that these inward affections of ours, like sinews or cords, drag us along and, being opposed to each other, pull one against the other to opposite actions; and herein lies the dividing line between goodness and badness. For, as our argument declares, there is one of these pulling forces which every man should always follow and nohow leave hold of, counteracting thereby the pull of the other sinews:

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