Quote by Plato: “Unless, said I, either philosophers become king...”
What is PLATO'S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY? What does PLATO'S POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY mean?
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However, Plato thinks that it is scarcely possible for philosophers to become rulers and so rulers must also be philosophers. Plato establishes theories and arguments on why rulers must also be philosophers. In spite of practicalities in certain cases, these theories and ideas undeniably make Plato an idealist thinker. The reasons and arguments Plato provided in his theories on why rulers must also be philosophers are briefly discussed in the following:. Theory of Three Souls and Three Classes. According to this theory of Plato, every soul has either of the three qualities- rational, spirit, and appetite. Individuals in whom the rational element is predominant constitute the ruling class or the guardian class.
According to Plato , a philosopher king is a ruler who possesses both a love of wisdom , as well as intelligence, reliability , and a willingness to live a simple life.
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Although democracy is the most popular system in the modern day society, certain people like the NZ TV personality Paul Henry , feel that the majority is not educated or intelligent enough to rule themselves well. Plato also saw a number of problems with the Greek democracy of the time. Plato felt that ordinary people are not experts and prone to making uninformed decisions. He also felt politics could attract power-seeking individuals, motivated by their personal gain rather than the public good, leading to corruption and tyranny. Plato concluded that politics requires expert and just rulers who are carefully selected and trained. In practical terms, his idea is very controversial and not feasible, but serves as a good illustration of the implications of rule by a chosen elite rather than by the people.