Cardinal Virtues In Relation To The Ideal State Essay Examples
Describe the general structure of the ideal state as Plato presents it in the Republic. What are the cardinal virtues and how do they relate to Plato's theory of the ideal state?
“The Republic” is Plato’s most renowned work on its comprehensive philosophical viewpoint. It is a full file of the most fundamental behaviors and principles in human life. Plato described his ideal state and its common structure. He included the value and characteristic of justice and the accompanying virtues as they materialize jointly in the constitution of society in unison with the individuality of a human being.
It is commonly recognized by people that the ‘Republic’ is the cordial argument of Plato’s central outlooks and experiences. Plato made the persona of "Socrates" as a made-up raconteur. Socrates refuted the rationalizations of his interlocutors. While the ‘Republic’ is a book about justice, it also tackles many other things. Plato aims to explain the importance of the philosophers to the city because he believed that philosophy is significant to a just city. He invented the political philosophy established on the scheme of creating a city on reasons and principles. Because justice is easier to discuss on a more general level, Plato started by analyzing the organization, establishment and structure of an ideal state through the application of its outcomes to individual life (Schofield, 296).
In the ‘Republic’, Socrates developed an understanding on the ideal state and its relation to soul, justice and happiness. He presented a broad and multifaceted, but integral argument, in defense of the ideal state structure.
The discussion presents a diversity of interpretative intricacies and has set off numerous philosophers in creating remarkable intellectual works. So as to attempt to understand the “Republic” all at once, it is essential to wrestle with the idea of the general structure of the ideal state as well as the cardinal virtues included in building the state.
According to Plato, an ideal state is comprised of three different classes and they are t he rulers, the soldiers and the people. Plato described the structure of an ideal state by associating it with the constitutions of the human soul first, and then relating it to the actual structure of a political society. In building an ideal state, one must consider that a human body is also a state that must achieve harmony to realize ideal condition. The discussion of the ideal state will include the constitution of the human soul, and then will continue to the discussion of the constitution of the state in parallel with the soul (Lorenz, 45).
Plato believed that every person show similar characters do similar responsibilities and exemplify similar virtues as the city state do. With this analogy, every person, just like the state, possesses several components that also have individual and specific roles. However, we can be aware of it during occasions when we are subjected to decision making and choosing options. Because only in these situation that we feel contradicting impulses forcing us in diverse paths.
Plato dissected the constitution of the soul and these are the rational, the spirited and the appetitive portions. The rational portion of the soul is the component that calculates and generates unbiased and unprejudiced decisions. This particular element of the soul always considers the wellbeing of the entire soul. The soul, as a whole, is its foremost priority. On the other hand, the spirited element is the component of the soul that is courageous, determined and self-motivated. The discussion of Plato tells us that the spirited component rationally collaborates with the rational element in the condition that it hasn’t been tainted by an appalling upbringing. The last component of the soul is the appetitive part. This particular part desires, becomes hungry and thirsty. It also gets thrilled by other appetites. It is the segment of the soul that can starve for immoral extravagance and corruption and thus, possesses no balanced discernment when it comes to its needs. However, the rational part of the soul maintains the desires restricted and permits the soul to differentiate the good from the bad (Lorenz, 57).
The three different components of the soul show that human souls have different wills; nevertheless, for a soul to keep on in the just path, it must have a few types of chain of guidelines. Plato presented the spirited element as the impudent follower of the rational element which manages the appetitive component (Lorenz, 57).
Plato divided the state into three categories of people: the rulers, the soldiers and the workers. Each person aims to attain the best education with utmost concern towards the course of the mission he could do with supremacy. People get hold of comparable and equal chances of becoming leaders or workers, not including whichever bigotry regarding their milieu. They are evaluated separately, completely aligned with their inherent dispositions.
People who are en suite to perform an unequivocal kind of work befall into workers. They are the fraction of the society whose duty is to provide the necessities of the states. Workers are imposed to be controlled and submissive to the head of the state. The second component of the society are the soldiers, they are the people who do best in combats. They are spirited and have passed the assessments of the state by seizing determinedly to the nationalistic viewpoint advantageous to defend the state from foreign and neighboring adversaries. Soldiers possess the courage and are educated as much as necessary to stay faithful. They do not hurt the citizens even if they are stronger. The third components of the society are the rulers who have the virtue of knowledge and they ought not to seek for eminence and grandeur. Rulers are devoted to their state. They love and recognize its rules, and therefore they will pursue justice as long as they can (Schofield, 302).
On Plato's outlook, a human being is just when the three components of the soul carry out their appropriate purposes in harmony, functioning for the good of the individual as one. Justice only occur if there is a harmonized interrelationship among the soul components same as in a well-ordered state.
In the ideal state, the separation of the classes does not have any room for errors. In this kind of state, all people are committed in the best way. Every person is suitable for his duty for the realization of a just state. Every single person is doing his part with supremacy that is known as virtue. Therefore, all people are causal to the virtue of the whole state. Thus, the cardinal virtue is accomplishing one’s personal duty.
The cardinal virtues will lead us to the deliberations of the way of gaining knowledge, the human nature, and the establishment of a proficient education, the classification between reality and expression, and the basics of morality. Plato’s philosophical apprehensions in the argument of cardinal virtues are both political and ethical. Plato explained that cardinal virtues of human are related to the human nature seeking for a just life. The notion of a just life comprise justice, comprehension, education, the arrangement of reality, beliefs on human happiness, importance of philosophy, the nature and the Forms, the virtues and vices, the position of women in culture, the family, good and bad souls and the afterlife (Allen, 65).
Plato stated that the concept of a just life is analogous in both the state and the soul. The workers are parallel to the appetitive element of the soul since they both require to be controlled in their desires. The soldiers and the spirited both hold the virtue of bravery to defend the state and the soul. The ruler and the rational have the knowledge that manages the state and the soul for the good of the entire state and soul.
An ideal state possesses harmony. This harmony implies that the appetitive must be restrained; the spirited must protect and the rational must lead. They should all conform for the good of the entire society. In ideal, people of the state know that supporting the harmony is for the good of the entire society. The soldiers of the society and the spirited component of the soul must maintain the organization of things. Cardinal virtues must be applied in both the soul and the state to achieve harmony and the ideal state.
Allen, R.E. Plato: The Republic. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006.
Lorenz, Hendrik. The Analysis of the Soul in Plato’s Republic. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2006.
Schofield, Malcolm. "Plato and Practical Politics." Rowe, C. and M. Schofield. The Cambridge Companion to Greek and Roman Political Thought. Cambridge University Press, 2005. 293-302.