Speechless About the Life of the Mind

Plato, Philebus 21d-e

P: This argument has made me completely speechless right now

S: Let’s not give up yet! Let’s take up and examine the life of the mind too.

P: What sort of life are you talking about?

S: If someone would accept living while possessing intelligence, thought, knowledge and perfect memory, but without having any small or great part of pleasure or pain but instead be completely untouched by these kinds of things.

P: Socrates, neither life seems attractive to me, nor to anyone else, I believe.”

ΠΡΩ. Εἰς ἀφασίαν παντάπασί με, ὦ Σώκρατες, οὗτος ὁ λόγος ἐμβέβληκε τὰ νῦν.

ΣΩ. Μήπω τοίνυν μαλθακιζώμεθα, τὸν δὲ τοῦ νοῦ μεταλαβόντες αὖ βίον ἴδωμεν.

ΠΡΩ. Τὸν ποῖον δὴ λέγεις;

ΣΩ. Εἴ τις δέξαιτ᾿ ἂν αὖ ζῆν ἡμῶν φρόνησιν μὲν καὶ νοῦν καὶ ἐπιστήμην καὶ μνήμην πᾶσαν πάντων κεκτημένος, ἡδονῆς δὲ μετέχων μήτε μέγα μήτε σμικρόν, μηδ᾿ αὖ λύπης, ἀλλὰ τὸ παράπαν ἀπαθὴς πάντων τῶν τοιούτων.

ΠΡΩ. Οὐδέτερος ὁ βίος, ὦ Σώκρατες, ἔμοιγε τούτων αἱρετός, οὐδ᾿ ἄλλῳ μή ποτε, ὡς ἐγᾦμαι, φανῇ.

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