Feed on
Posts
Comments

Descent into Tyranny

In Book Nine Socrates opens the discussion by explaining to those around him how a tyrant comes into being, and how erotic passion and the desire for unnecessary things play a role in this.  He starts by returning us to the idea of the democratic man who now has a son, this son who is now indulging in his fathers unnecessary desires will become a tyrant because he does not have the same influences as his father. Essentially what is being explained to us is a ladder that descends into deeper and darker things as you go through the generations. The democratic mans father would have been an oligarchical man which is why is son is a democratic man and the democratic man’s son will be a tyrant. This is only the beginning of the man’s descent into tyranny.

While the origins of the tyrannical mans birth are important, as Socrates would have us to believe it is only the foundation for why the man becomes a tyrant; the real catalyst is when someone, possibly a drone implants erotic and slothful desires into him (9.572E). This erotic passion leads to feasts, revelry, celebration, and all sorts of things. This is bad because as Socrates points out “doesn’t a drunken man have a certain tyrannical way of thinking?” (9.573C). This has some truth in it, a drunk person no longer holds to normal social standards, they revert to a more basic behavior. This is different for everyone and for a man raised by a democratic man this would lead to tyrannical behavior.  This leads to even worse behavior, it as if we are once again seeing how the slow descent into something worse.

Socrates tells us that the next logical step is that as a result of this drinking and partying the son will run out of money with which to pay for his desires. Having run out of money he will go to his parents looking for help. Socrates says the first thing the man will try to do is cheat his parents out of everything (9.574B).  He will ignore their resistance and after cleaning them out of everything he will move on. The idea that the son would rob from his parents is unthinkable to Adeimantus, whom Socrates is talking to. To Socrates this is just another “step” towards becoming a tyrant for this man.

Having been rejected by his parents he resorts to stealing what he needs, he starts committing crimes and eventually becomes a living nightmare. To Socrates this is a tyrant; because he is so driven to get money and has stopped caring about others his friends abandon him. Once he is alone he is unable to fulfill his needs and lives in fear. Socrates says this when he brings up the idea that “someone who’s most a tyrant for the longest time also have been in truth the most miserable person for the longest time?” (9.576C). This appears to be the final step towards becoming a true tyrant; once you are alone it is easier to control others and enslave them, even if you live in constant fear of them.

This change from supposed normality to tyranny occurs all starts because the man’s father is a democratic man. What is interesting is the process of the descent, starting all the way back to the man’s father. What is surprising is that a man would go to such lengths for this erotic passion and his partying habits. It is hard to believe that partying drives him to do these unspeakable things, it is possible that because I have not experienced this first hand I am unable to truly comprehend the idea behind it. How you are raised as a child does influence your life quite heavily, and if a democratic man raised this tyrannical man than his fathers views on the use of unnecessary things would rub off on him and become a bigger problem. Thus we get the progression from democratic men to tyrannical men just as we saw the progression from oligarchical men to democratic men.

19 Responses to “Descent into Tyranny”

  1. Related…

    […]just beneath, are numerous totally not related sites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[…]…

  2. TARGI OBUWIA says:

    Recent Blogroll Additions…

    […]usually posts some very interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[…]…

  3. Websites you should visit

    […]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[…]…

  4. Recent Blogroll Additions…

    […]usually posts some very interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[…]…

  5. Sites we Like…

    […] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose […]…

  6. Links

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]…

  7. Related…

    […]just beneath, are numerous totally not related sites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[…]…

  8. Links

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]…

  9. morel tempo says:

    Gems form the internet

    […]very few websites that happen to be detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly well worth checking out[…]…

  10. Related…

    […]just beneath, are numerous totally not related sites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[…]…

  11. Recommeneded websites

    […]Here are some of the sites we recommend for our visitors[…]…

  12. Read was interesting, stay in touch…

    […]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, as it represents our picks from the web[…]…

  13. visit says:

    Visitor recommendations

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]…

  14. Recommeneded websites

    […]Here are some of the sites we recommend for our visitors[…]…

  15. Sites we Like…

    […] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose […]…

  16. Recent Blogroll Additions…

    […]usually posts some very interesting stuff like this. If you’re new to this site[…]…

  17. Sources

    […]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[…]…

  18. Read was interesting, stay in touch…

    […]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, as it represents our picks from the web[…]…

  19. Websites we think you should visit

    […]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[…]…