February 16, 2009

"Plato.... in one of his more exotic myths, imagined that 'the penis and the womb introduced the mindlessness and the beastly nature...'"

"'... of the appetitive part of the soul into human anatomy,' men having previously had neither a penis nor a woman to put a penis in, a state that is conducive (according to Plato) to natural bliss. The penis was to prove a tyrannical and recalcitrant beast, impervious to reason. (Augustine, eagerly picking up on Plato centuries later, thought an erection was the mark of Original Sin.) After all this, Aristotle's biological common sense — his view of the sexual drive as guarantee of natural procreation, with the penis a kind of spontaneous ideal slave — comes as welcome relief. Moralists, alas, preferred Plato."

Thought you'd like some hoity-toity philosophy to start the week.

15 comments:

Ron said...

It makes me wonder if Gabe Kaplan was the Platonic Form of the JewFro!

Ann Althouse said...

Now, I have to think about Gabe Kaplan's penis!

Lem said...

…men having previously had neither a penis nor a woman to put a penis in, a state that is conducive (according to Plato) to natural bliss.

Is that the idea behind circumcision?

A kind of anti stimulus, shock therapy?

Lem said...

I was circumcised as a teenager btw. Not pleasant.

It scarred me for life ;)

EDH said...

Reminds me of the joke about how they used to spearate the men from the boys in ancient Greece.

Walt said...

Saturday Night Live - Dick In A Box!

traditionalguy said...

Plato had it about right. But today's 4 hour+ erections would wear out even the ancient Greeks. Well maybe not the Spartans. Was this why condoms were called Trojans, because the Trojan Horse was slipped into Troy's gates by Greeks bearing an erect gift who said,"You know you want it." It was all the woman's fault, said Man #1. That's our story and we are sticking to it.

EDH said...

Lem said...
I was circumcised as a teenager btw. Not pleasant.

It scarred me for life ;)


Poor Lem, obviously no one told him how to use The Safe Word.

Walt said...

It is best to keep it in your pants!

Lem said...

..his view of the sexual drive as guarantee of natural procreation, with the penis a kind of spontaneous ideal slave--comes as welcome relief.

he he he.. he said spontaneous.

Synova said...

He's including the womb, too. So why the fixation on the penis?

I think that a modern example of the exact same idea is the elevation of Spock and the Vulcans as representing the top of civilization, something separated from lust and superstition.

ricpic said...

A man has a penis?
Or a penis has a man?
Either way a Venus
Is the locus of their plan.

RLB_IV said...

Hmmm...
Plato was trying to explain the consciousness out of our bodies, i.e
that state of consciouness that precludes the passion of material senses. If you ever had the experience of sex in the lower astral planes you would understand. think dreamland...
ask the blogging cockroach...he probably knows...

Walt said...

"Plato described the uterus as an animal endowed with spontaneous sensation and emotion that was lodged in a woman, ardently desiring to produce children. If the uterus remained sterile long after puberty, it became ill-tempered and caused a general disturbance in the body until it became pregnant. The common prescription for the hysterical female in those days was marriage and child birth."

amba said...

a spontaneous ideal slave??? WTF?