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Ponder Points

A Ponder Point is a significant, outstanding, or effective idea, argument or suggestion that needs to be weighed in the mind with thoroughness and care.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Plato's Argument For The Immortality Of The Soul

As I look at the titles of my past posts, I see quite a range of topics. Compared to most blogs that seem to deal with a specific subject, it might appear that I am unfocused and wandering around with the little animals in the forest of ideas. The theme of this blog is to put forward thoughts and ideas that are worthy, at least in my view, of thoughtful consideration or pondering. My interests are wide ranging and I read incessantly and enjoy discussing just about any subject with anyone.

That said, the subject of this post is whether or not the soul is immortal. The following excerpt is from an article by Professor Peter Kreeft published in The Truth Journal entitled "The Case for Life After Death" http://www.leaderu.com/truth/1truth28.html. The professor makes some compelling arguments from several different perspectives. In this excerpt he is quoting from the Republic by Plato:

"One last argument for immortality from the present experience of what soul is, comes from Plato. It is put so perfectly in the Republic that I quote it in its original form, adding only numbers to distinguish the steps of the argument:

1. Evil is all that which destroys and corrupts. . .

2. Each thing has its evil . . . for instance, ophthalmia for the eye, and disease for the whole body, mildew for corn and for wood, rust for iron . . .

3. The natural evil of each thing . . . destroys it, and if this does not destroy it, nothing else can . .
(a) for I don't suppose good can ever destroy anything,
(b) nor can what is neither good nor evil,
(c) and it is certainly unreasonable . . . that the evil of something else would destroy anything when its own evil does not.

4. Then if we find something in existence which has its own evil but which can only do it harm yet cannot dissolve or destroy it, we shall know at once that there is no destruction for such a nature. . . .

5. the soul has something which makes it evil . . . injustice, intemperance, cowardice, ignorance. Now does any one of these dissolve and destroy it? . . .

6. Then, since it is not destroyed by any evil at all, neither its own evil nor foreign evil, it is clear that the soul must of necessity be . . . immortal. "

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