In which we discuss the theurgic and practical aspects of Plato's Symposium. Must we renounce physical expressions of love to achieve the higher philosophical love of pure Beauty? The role of the prophetess Diotima as the initiating guru of Socrates and as an icon, perhaps of Wisdom. Alcibiades and his wild, intoxicated erotic desire for the old man. The banquet itself as praise of god.
Greg, Isabel, and Alex talk about Greg's paper "The Chora of the Timaeus and Iamblichean Theology." What did it mean for the Neoplatonists for a human to embody the Divine? Similarities between Plato's Chora and Buddhist concepts of "shunyata" or emptiness as the matrix or mother of being. A memorable moment in Jean Paul Sartre's Nausea. Socrates as a Prophet of Islam. Philosophy as initiation.
Gregory Shaw from Stonehill College and my friend and fellow Classicist Isabel Farias join me this week to discuss the concept of the chora in Plato's Timaeus. Isabel wrote her thesis at Barnard about the Timaeus. Greg authored a paper about the concept titled "The Chora in the Timaeus and Iamblichean Theurgy." In the abstract to this paper, he offered the following brief description of what the concept is: "The chôra described in the Timaeus (52b) is said to be the receptacle through...
The conclusion of my interview with Greg Shaw of Stonehill College about Platonism as a contemporary spiritual path. We talk about how people who are interested in this might move forward with it, and I make plans to start working on this show with him and a couple other magnificent guests with Plato's Timaeus in a few weeks. By request, I give a very short intro to my own spiritual autobiography, which I intend to talk more about next week.