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Plato's philosophy of human nature

1. natural human goal: eudaimonia
2. three parts/capacities of the soul

eudaimonia

"having a good guardian spirit"; happiness, flourishing, the "good life"

three parts/capacities of the soul

1. appetite
2. thumos
3. reason/intellect

appetite

desire for things we need to survive or thrive physically, things which are usually pleasant -- food, water, warmth, sex, etc.

thumos

energy, drive, ambition, aggression, get-up-and-go

reason/intellect

ability to analyze facts, evidence, and arguments in a detached and unbiased way

three classes in the Republic

1. working class
2. military
3. rulers

analogy between classes of the Republic and parts of the soul

1. working class -- appetites
2. military -- thumos
3. rulers -- reason/intellect

cardinal virtues

1. temperance (moderation)
2. courage (strength)
3. wisdom (prudence)
4. justice

temperance

an attitude of moderation toward pleasure, especially physical pleasures of food, drink, and sex

courage

an attitude of strength in the face of danger or in situations that cause fear or confidence

wisdom

the ability to recognize the best possible goal or result in a given situation and to figure out what actions to take to get to that goal

justice

fairness; giving people what they deserve; treating people equally

cardinal virtues in the Republic

1. working class -- temperance
2. military -- courage
3. rulers -- wisdom
4. the whole city/state -- justice

cardinal virtues in the soul

1. appetites -- temperance
2. thumos -- courage
3. reason/intellect -- wisdom
4. the whole soul -- justice

questions Plato leaves us with

1. will having the soul in harmony really make us just?
2. will being virtuous really make us happy?

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