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[504b] what was said before this?” “What?” “We were saying, I believe, that for the most perfect discernment of these things another longer way1 was requisite which would make them plain to one who took it, but that it was possible to add proofs on a par with the preceding discussion. And you said that that was sufficient, and it was on this understanding that what we then said was said, falling short of ultimate precision as it appeared to me, but if it contented you it is for you to say.” “Well,” he said, “it was measurably satisfactory to me, and apparently

1 Cf. Vol. I. on 435 C, Phaedr. 274 A, Friedländer, Platon, ii. pp. 376-377, Jowett and Campbell, p. 300 Frutiger, Mythes de Platon, pp. 81 ff., and my Idea of Good in Plato's RepublicUniv. of Chicago Studies in class. Phil. vol. i. p. 190). There is no mysticism and no obscurity. The longer way is the higher education, which will enable the philosopher not only like ordinary citizens to do the right from habit and training, but to understand the reasons for it. The outcome of such an education is described as the vision of the idea of good, which for ethics and politics means a restatement of the provisional psychological definition of the cardinal virtues in terms of the ultimate elements of human welfare. For metaphysics and cosmogony the vision of the idea of good may means teleological interpretation of the universe and the interpretation of all things in terms of benevolent design. That is reserved for poetical and mythical treatment in the Timaeus. The Republic merely glances at the thought from time to time and returns to its own theme. Cf.also Introd. p. xxxv.

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