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Ethos

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PostSubject: The Ancient Regime Sat Jul 30, 2016 7:53 pm

I am beginning this thread mostly to share and discuss insights gained from reading Paul Rahe's The Ancien Regime in Classical Greece which I will indicate as, but may hopefully inspire more discussion and other attemps at the subject.

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The Greeks had no professional armies (compare to Machiavelli).

To be free men, must fear slavery more than death.

Those things which are bad are ignoble, like slavery.

Courage is needed for freedom and a good life. (Thucydides 2.36.1, 43.4 , 4.126.2, 5.9.1, 9)

Aristotle contends that the true human quality is rational speech (logos), which enables reasoned discusion on what is good and bad (just and unjust) as opposed to merely expressing pleasure and pain. This enables cooperative action, a dynamic community, and the transmission of civilizational arts.

It is when one is capable of this rational deliberation and the ability to put it into practice that one loses one's humanity. {(Arist. Politics 1252b27 - 1253a39, 1278b15-30, 1280a25-1281a10, 1283b42-1284a3) compare Locke TTG II.ii.8, 10-11, iii16, vii.79-80, 93, xix.228}

Serving a king even in high office was to the Greeks akin to being a slave. (Arist. Politics 1285b29-33)

Poverty was worse than death because it reduced a man's freedom (his self-determination). (Plat. Epis. 7.351a, Xen. Helle. 2.3.47-49, Cic.Off. 1.42.150, 2.17.60, 3.2.7, Xen. Mem. 2.8.1-6)

When a monarch converts a polity into a private dominion, the status of citizens as 'free' becomes converted to the status of property of the monarch. All conventional limits on freedom is to convert the status of the individual to the property of the authority over him. The only way to safeguard freedom is by having citizens take part in government and thus maintain self-ownership.

Modern liberals, led by the belief of the primacy of self-preservation, held the opposite of the ancients in that they felt that liberty was safetly provied for by government and a limited one that allowed individuals to conduct their private affairs in peace. (Montesq. Spirit. 2.11.4; 4.22.2; 2.11.2-3, 5; 12.1-2; 2.11.5-6. 12.2-13.20; 1.5.6, 19, 7.1; 3.19.9, 26-27; 4.20.1-2. 4-8. 10. 12-14, 21, 23, 21.5, 6, 7, 12-16, 20, 22.2-3, 10-14, 17-19, 21-22, 23.8, 17)
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Sat Jul 30, 2016 10:02 pm

To be free, free from what? Each other? ... Are you sure slavery has no honor within it? Are you under the impression that slaves were always treated terribly..

Do you know the meaning of serving?

Is it then not clear that you will find a greater freedom which comes in the form of serving. Are you free from service? Will you ever be free without service?

What then is a good life without a good heart? Will you ever attain a good heart without engaging in the form of service? Does the word "slave" haunt your mind? Perhaps the word servant is more approachable ..

Does not a honorable loyal slave maintain ownership over his master within reason?

Will a master lose his honor and good life in the terrible treatment of the slaves he possesses?

What then is the indication when a slave is over burdened?

Who then, truly, is the beggar?
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Sat Jul 30, 2016 11:00 pm

mannequin wrote:
To be free, free from what?

The free man does not need the impositions of others for guidance or control of his will, to self-determine towards growth from one's current position.

mannequin wrote:
Are you sure slavery has no honor within it?

The goal is not to see the good in any trash so we can fashion it too as an accessory but to seek what is highest.

mannequin wrote:
Are you under the impression that slaves were always treated terribly..

This question has no relevance here, particularly to what I've written. See the response above.

mannequin wrote:
Do you know the meaning of serving?

Yes, and I can distinguish it from cultivating, enrichening, etc.

mannequin wrote:
Is it then not clear that you will find a greater freedom which comes in the form of serving.

No, this is sophism, at best Hegelianism which is little better than doublethink.

mannequin wrote:
Does the word "slave" haunt your mind?

No

mannequin wrote:
Perhaps the word servant is more approachable ..

Perhaps you find it so, if it is a proper fit for your essence.

mannequin wrote:
Does not a honorable loyal slave maintain ownership over his master within reason?

No, the so called honor of the slave is determined by the master, therefore it is part of the master's property and a quality for the master to revoke, beyond the will of the slave.

mannequin wrote:
Will a master lose his honor and good life in the terrible treatment of the slaves he possesses?

We must specify terrible treatment in order to work out the consequences.

mannequin wrote:
What then is the indication when a slave is over burdened?

Who then, truly, is the beggar?

A beggar implies one solicit favor of another and therefore put one's power in another's hands. This does not describe the relationship between a master and a slave but some other relationship. I think you are trying to imply that a master might not be in control of his own passions and so lead him to excessive want or desire. This is another problem, one that does indeed imply standards of nobility, but not the formal relations between masters and slaves which is the subject being discussed here.
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Sun Jul 31, 2016 8:49 am

Quote :
The free man does not need the impositions of others for guidance or control of his will, to self-determine towards growth from one's current position.

Modern humans are birthed into dependency due not being exposed to a more naturalistic upbringing, meaning a circumstance that would develop self-preservative tendencies. The modern systems are the closest a lot of people can possibly come to freedom, otherwise death by natural standards would filter them out excessively.

Natural freedom obtained by will of the self is hindered by governmental control as expanded territory is maintained, placing all resources under lock and key.

So, freedom now would still depend upon communication relative to the other.

What truly is freedom when it is based upon an agreement?
Quote :


The goal is not to see the good in any trash so we can fashion it too as an accessory but to seek what is highest.

But default, you have already sought the bad by referring to it as "trash", do you not think that mutually seeking the good within it would also contribute to refining that which is high?

mannequin wrote:
Are you under the impression that slaves were always treated terribly..

Quote :
This question has no relevance here, particularly to what I've written. See the response above.

That question has great relevancy, even vital in understanding the relationship between the master and slave..



mannequin wrote:
Is it then not clear that you will find a greater freedom which comes in the form of serving.

Quote :
No, this is sophism, at best Hegelianism which is little better than doublethink.

Relative to the modern circumstance, how then will you best serve your position in communication regarding freedom?

mannequin wrote:
Does the word "slave" haunt your mind?
Quote :

No

Does the word "master" fill you with joy?

mannequin wrote:
Perhaps the word servant is more approachable ..

Quote :
Perhaps you find it so, if it is a proper fit for your essence.

Do we not all serve..something?

mannequin wrote:
Does not a honorable loyal slave maintain ownership over his master within reason?

Quote :
No, the so called honor of the slave is determined by the master, therefore it is part of the master's property and a quality for the master to revoke, beyond the will of the slave.

Does a master have an automatic honor upon the possession of slaves?

By what means do a master determine?

mannequin wrote:
Will a master lose his honor and good life in the terrible treatment of the slaves he possesses?

Quote :
We must specify terrible treatment in order to work out the consequences.

Then specify it?

Perhaps it will be easy for you since you have already declared slaves as trash..

mannequin wrote:
What then is the indication when a slave is over burdened?

Who then, truly, is the beggar?

Quote :
A beggar implies one solicit favor of another and therefore put one's power in another's hands. This does not describe the relationship between a master and a slave but some other relationship. I think you are trying to imply that a master might not be in control of his own passions and so lead him to excessive want or desire. This is another problem, one that does indeed imply standards of nobility, but not the formal relations between masters and slaves which is the subject being discussed here.

Does not a slave willingly put his/her power in another person's hands, on the basis of impoverishment..and other things? Does the modern man not do the same regarding the system?
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Sun Jul 31, 2016 10:16 am

mannequin wrote:
Modern humans are birthed into dependency due not being exposed to a more naturalistic upbringing, meaning a circumstance that would develop self-preservative tendencies.

I do not follow your reasoning. Modern dependency is not a negation of freedom. Perhaps you are confused because nature itself entails no absolute freedom.

Humans are always dependent at birth, and in childhood we are always part of a process of cultural transmission. This part of ourselves are natural, one can see it also in animals who are bred to be entirely domesticated, only humans are a more extreme case since what gives us an advantage is our dexterity and our capacity for reasoning and abstracting by memory. This will always entail cultural forms particular to the human, and humans will never conquer circumstance to the point where they dictate it because the matter and form of circumstance is a priori to the human.

Every human alive in modernity has developed some sort of self-preservative tendencies, and when we say they have become servants we are talking about something particular. To be a servant or a slave is to enact the will of another. We can point to this in a modern context where one enacts the will of another regardless of whether the product of that will contradicts with the servants. A criticism against slavery is not a criticism against work, or effort, particularly in regards to a priori circumstances. One may legitimately work toward an outcome without being a slave, but one is a wage slave, for example, when one works towards another's end regardless of whether that end contradicts one's will.

Of course the reasonable man will find this a necessary conclusion because the reasonable man is aware of what effort upon which he should place his will, and an obstruction to that process is rather a burden than a fruitful position.


mannequin wrote:
The modern systems are the closest a lot of people can possibly come to freedom, otherwise death by natural standards would filter them out excessively.

What I have written above covers part of my response to this. I think your implying here more than you are explicit about. Your question is more of a personal question and also one for those who are considering being parents. It is a personal question because it regards your own abilities and your relation to what exists in the world.

Philosophy can or should not move to the point where it becomes a simulacra which rests the human in a bed of comforting deceit. Nowhere have I advised against cooperation among reasonable people, in fact I attest humanities physiological imitations and the importance of the intelligence for human survival.


mannequin wrote:
Natural freedom obtained by will of the self is hindered by governmental control as expanded territory is maintained, placing all resources under lock and key.

Yes, freedom of the will is hindered in this way, but it is not brought under subjection merely in this manner. Those who who have the capacity for reason will understand the necessity of being aware of world relations, and in relations to these and other standards will determine their actions.

mannequin wrote:
What truly is freedom when it is based upon an agreement?

This rhetorical question I do not understand. I think you have brought in terms that were not my own and assigned them to me perhaps.

mannequin wrote:
But default, you have already sought the bad by referring to it as "trash", do you not think that mutually seeking the good within it would also contribute to refining that which is high?

You did not understand my remark in two ways. I made an analogy to literal trash, in the sense that moderns do. What I meant is that the goal is no to look around at any garbage on the street and apropriate it as a new norm, but to seek what is highest. My analogy was to slavery and not to particular slaves. That is not to say that I would think that qualities of particular slaves should be emulated, if only because they will always suffer a taint of their own slavery.

I think that seeking what is higher is an a posteriori process which is combined with innate sense. Our knowledge can never be completely divorced from history.

Perhaps you wish to go into a sort of taxonomy of slaves. On one level I do understand your interest but on another I just think that too much time will be wasted in such a taxonomy which could be put to better use.

I do not think that defining the qualities of slaves and picking out good points, perhaps the strength and endurance of some, because these qualities can be found in better examples of men who exemplify these qualities. Pheidippides comes to mind satisfying both.

mannequin wrote:
mannequin wrote:
Are you under the impression that slaves were always treated terribly..

Quote :
This question has no relevance here, particularly to what I've written. See the response above.

That question has great relevancy, even vital in understanding the relationship between the master and slave..

I do not think that slaves were always terribly treated, no. I still think this irrelevant because it is the status of a slave which is degrading. If the slave shows himself to have no capacity beyond his subjection then he has already proven to be of a lower order and not fit for the emulation of reasonable men.

I have already said that the role of the master and the slave is dictated by the master, else there is no relationship.

mannequin wrote:
mannequin wrote:
Is it then not clear that you will find a greater freedom which comes in the form of serving.

Quote :
No, this is sophism, at best Hegelianism which is little better than doublethink.

Relative to the modern circumstance, how then will you best serve your position in communication regarding freedom?

I hope I have already satisfied this in the first section of this post.

mannequin wrote:
Does the word "master" fill you with joy?

It depends on the context. I do not seek the subjection of the world because I know nature better than that. Whether I would use the will of those who have no capacity for reason despite their own is a question for circumstance. Given the right circumstances yes.

mannequin wrote:
Do we not all serve..something?

I do not see it the way you do. I think many stoop to serve, yes. I do not understand all direction of the will relational to, for example, challenges, to be subjection.

mannequin wrote:
Does a master have an automatic honor upon the possession of slaves?

No. To be the master of slaves is a particular relationship which in itself does not imbue honor. It is likely that many masters have possessed honorable traits. In the sense in which you wished to varnish the slave for the sake of his silver, I assert that if we varnish the master we are likely to find much more of value to what is human. If you are asking whether it is my assertion that the most valuable man is by necessity a master, then I say no.

mannequin wrote:
By what means do a master determine?

Can you rephrase this? Do you mean by communication?

mannequin wrote:
mannequin wrote:
Will a master lose his honor and good life in the terrible treatment of the slaves he possesses?

Quote :
We must specify terrible treatment in order to work out the consequences.

Then specify it?

A master will in fact lose his honor and a good life when in the terrible treatment of his slaves he makes his household or his demesne of a worse nature than if his will had not commanded. In other words, if the master is utterly incompitent and a lower form of being.

mannequin wrote:
Perhaps it will be easy for you since you have already declared slaves as trash..

I made an analogy comparing the state of slavery as an ideal to seeking ideals within trash.

mannequin wrote:
Does not a slave willingly put his/her power in another person's hands, on the basis of impoverishment..and other things? Does the modern man not do the same regarding the system?

If we are going to be exact with terms, a slave does not necessarily willingly put his or herself in another person's hands, because often this process is anterior to the will of the slave. The individual was enslaved and therefore had no choice based on the will of the master.

A modern man in the liberal constitutional sense can only be a slave posterior to his will. The modern slave is enticed into slavery as an alternative to conflict with external circumstances facilitated by the modern state and its authorized bodies.

Another distiction one could make between slavery in the modern sense and slavery in the classic sense is that modern slaves are often unaware that they are slaves, generally due to a lack of knowledge and understanding and often the lack of desire for either. A master is likely to consider the modern slave as a more perfect slave if for this very reason.
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Sun Jul 31, 2016 12:13 pm

Political liberty was defined as the ability to speak what is important. (Thucydides 1.70, 2.34-46, 60-64)

Aristotle exhorts that man should strive to be greater than human (Arist. Nic. Eth. 1177b31-34)

Plato advocates philosophy as the means to that achievement.

For Aristotle, great actions make men more than animals. (Arist. Pol. 1254a7)

The desire for glory is bound up with the logos, the noble, the good, and virtue. (Plato Laws. 2.660e - 664c)

It is for the sake of excellence (arête) that logos has come into existence. (Arist. Nic. Eth. 1095b14 - 1096a2)

The logos is understood to be the cause of disagreements, strife, and war — especially over the good and just. (Plato Phaed. 263a-b, Alc.I. 111b-112e, Stat. 283b6 - 287b2, Arist. Pol. 1252b27 - 1253a29)

Aristotle indicates that humans are both political and non-political because they share as humans goals and needs, but as individuals their private needs and desires come at odds. It is due to the latter that justice becomes necessary for a community of rational communicative beings. Creeds of nobility, virtue, and regard are communal in character. (Arist. Pol. 1252b27 - 1253a29, 1280b29 - 1281a8, Nic. Eth. 1159b25 - 1160a29, 1167a22 - b16, 1170b33 - 1171a20)

The Greeks sought to create solidarity through unanimity of opinions and goals. (Xen. Mem. 4.4.16, Plat. Rep. 1.351a - 352a, Arist. Nic. Eth. 1155a22 - 26, 1167a22 -b16, Pol. 1330a9 - 23, 1306a9, Thucydides 8.75.2, 93.3, 3.82 - 83)

The Greeks knew that the differentiation of private interests was a threat to political solidarity/stability. (Xen. Oec. 6.4 - 8, Plat. Laws 4.704d - 705b, 5.741e - 744a, 8.847d - e, 12.952d - 953e, Arist. Pol. 1326b39 -1327a40)
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Mon Aug 01, 2016 12:30 am

Let's define treatment more specifically, out of curiosity, in your opinion is sexual interaction with a slave girl deemed acceptable, and to add an extra context to the sexual interaction, it will be of, let's say..BDSM nature, within a degree?

Quote :
Modern dependency is not a negation of freedom

Yes it is, well at least a restriction in a potentially developed level of freedom, had the humans been born in a less governmental time period, then the orientation of the will would of taken on a different form, most likely more self focused due to a more naturally occurring circumstance, but perhaps this falls into the hindering of the will, as you mentioned.

Out of curiosity, your thoughts on Utilitarianism?

Quote :
If we are going to be exact with terms, a slave does not necessarily willingly put his or herself in another person's hands, because often this process is anterior to the will of the slave. The individual was enslaved and therefore had no choice based on the will of the master.

I'm pretty sure in past times, there were slaves who willingly handed themselves over, and perhaps a part of the reason was because of their lower selves, or the incapacity they naturally maintained. Even if we talk specifically about those were enslaved, against their will, that often only stands initially until their will becomes generally synced with the approval of their own position after having being exposed to enslavement, but no doubt there are run aways and those who desired to be freed, or bought their own freedom.

Question. Hypothetically, if a slave is under your control and desires to be free, your response would be?
Quote :

Another distiction one could make between slavery in the modern sense and slavery in the classic sense is that modern slaves are often unaware that they are slaves, generally due to a lack of knowledge and understanding and often the lack of desire for either. A master is likely to consider the modern slave as a more perfect slave if for this very reason

Right, so wouldn't that contradict your previous statements
Quote :

Modern dependency is not a negation of freedom.

So you're basically saying freedom only becomes freedom when one decides to consciously seek it?

Even if that's the case, the will would have to be free in order for freedom of the self to be actualized. You have already agreed to modern hindering of the will, even if a conscious person seeks freedom.

If slavery is moved away from through will in order to seek freedom, do you not come closer to death, under modern dependency? It's a very real circumstance, not saying that you would die outright, but the possibility increases, as you did mention fear of slavery and death, even if you mentioned the fear of death as a natural event as a way of highlighting the extremity of slavery.

Perhaps there is confusion regarding that which you mean by freedom.
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:49 am

mannequin wrote:
Let's define treatment more specifically, out of curiosity, in your opinion is sexual interaction with a slave girl deemed acceptable, and to add an extra context to the sexual interaction, it will be of, let's say..BDSM nature, within a degree?

We are not "defining" treatment here, we are rather defining some kinds of standards, attitudes or laws. I would like to be clear on which it is before we continue. You say "in your opinion is sexual interaction with a slave girl deemed acceptable" - is this asking both my opinion and whether I would support law against the act? Are you asking, rather, whether I accept total slavery?

I will answer it thus because it is the way that I am most capable. Do I find what you describe a noble act? No, I find it a depraved act, and particularly with a slave. The act to me signifies a lower nature, a lack of control and guidance to thumos and the desire for what is lower. Sex would not be a proper way of controlling slaves because masters and slaves should not mix. The result of masters and slaves mixing would create a caste of those between master and slave which would be undesirable, since what is desired is to produce the highest. If the master desires it merely for pleasure then he is drifting towards hedonism and nihilism and his ability as a master is questionable. Of course we are using universals to hypothesize particulars which might lose sight or track of particulars.

mannequin wrote:
Out of curiosity, your thoughts on Utilitarianism?

Utilitarianism is a partly a reductionism and partly mistaking effects for ends. If you are talking about particular utilitarian theories I would have to consider them on that basis.

mannequin wrote:
Yes it is, well at least a restriction in a potentially developed level of freedom, had the humans been born in a less governmental time period, then the orientation of the will would of taken on a different form, most likely more self focused due to a more naturally occurring circumstance, but perhaps this falls into the hindering of the will, as you mentioned.

I said it is not a negation of freedom. You say it is, but you qualify your statement. I said modernity is not a negation of freedom, I did not say it was not a restriction, in fact I affirmed modernity has its restrictions. Other periods had their relative restrictions as well, but the vital difference is that this is your time. Your freedom is with the direction of your will. Your will is particular and relative, it is not absolutely free. Your actions are also relative, they are not absolutely free. Neither of these statements are a negation of the will. The will is negated only when it rationally surveys what exists and the rationality understands what must be willed but the volition acts against it for many reasons. These reasons are generally emotional, but they could also include a lack of knowledge or understanding, particularly in combination (conflicted feelings).

This is why one seeks what is highest.

"the orientation of the will would of taken on a different form, most likely more self focused due to a more naturally occurring circumstance" — this is not necessarily the case because you are experiencing this in hindsight. All historical peoples have had their challenges and it is the way that they face them which makes them great. One was not assured greatness just because of their period. It is the conviction with which one sets, the skills one has innately and those one cultivates and puts to use for the sake of great deeds.

mannequin wrote:
I'm pretty sure in past times, there were slaves who willingly handed themselves over, and perhaps a part of the reason was because of their lower selves, or the incapacity they naturally maintained. Even if we talk specifically about those were enslaved, against their will, that often only stands initially until their will becomes generally synced with the approval of their own position after having being exposed to enslavement, but no doubt there are run aways and those who desired to be freed, or bought their own freedom.

I am not sure what you wish to discuss here. It stands to reason that those who willingly handed themselves over were of a lower nature. Those who are enslaved by force are of course pitiable, but it is the recognition of this state which is recognition of its ill nature. On the question whether a slave can become noble, it would probably depend if they were a slave by nature or by law. If a slave is a slave by law then one may become free. If a slave is a slave by nature then he or she will never be free, the concept is a contradiction.

mannequin wrote:
Question. Hypothetically, if a slave is under your control and desires to be free, your response would be?

The desire to be free alone does not make one free. If a slave proves himself a free man, then to other free men it would be ignoble to keep him as a mere slave.

mannequin wrote:
Quote :
Another distiction one could make between slavery in the modern sense and slavery in the classic sense is that modern slaves are often unaware that they are slaves, generally due to a lack of knowledge and understanding and often the lack of desire for either. A master is likely to consider the modern slave as a more perfect slave if for this very reason

Right, so wouldn't that contradict your previous statements?

I do not see how it contradicts my previous statements. The lack of knowledge and understanding in many cases can be a lack of a will to knowledge. The presence of a lack of will to knowledge is a sign of a slavish nature. This is considered desirable by masters because they may possess slaves by nature rather than merely slaves by law. Slaves by law can consist of men who were unjustly enslaved, and so who were enslaved despite being free men.

mannequin wrote:
So you're basically saying freedom only becomes freedom when one decides to consciously seek it?

Not exactly, but sort of. Freedom is something of a construct of reason. Of course there is no external object "freedom". One cannot look actions alone or read value free or un-psychologistic descriptions of actions and deceipher what whether the action is free. The freedom of the action is decided by the reason, which can be in control of itself (through reasoning), or controlled (by emotion). A person is free when reason guides the action because the reason and the understanding are inseparable; one cannot understand one's actions without reasoning about them. I want to be clear here that emotions do come into reasoning, they are important in interpretation, but the word emotions is a construct signifying physiological processes. This is connected to that aspect of reason which makes it relational, as human, to particulars. And as humans we are natural beings, and in that sense possess natures.

I said not exactly because I am also making a further statement which is that the reason will light upon action, this is the practical aspect of reason. If, despite what one knows to be the actions which would lead to the highest effect within reason, one acts otherwise then one's freedom is restricted. One could propose examples like a mind which wishes to study but is very tired. If the mind is too tired for study it likely needs rest and though it is good to study it is necessary to take rests.

mannequin wrote:
Even if that's the case, the will would have to be free in order for freedom of the self to be actualized. You have already agreed to modern hindering of the will, even if a conscious person seeks freedom.

Even allowing that we are speaking about "modernity" in this way, we are talking about something like the makeup of the physical world through physical and social constructs which have consequences, etc. This is all of a given state, assuming we are talking about a posteriori content for possible interaction, and is rather content for reason and experience than an utter hindering of the will. To speak about freedom is not to speak about some unbounded unhindered power because freedom is always a state within an existing order.

mannequin wrote:
If slavery is moved away from through will in order to seek freedom, do you not come closer to death, under modern dependency?

No, I see no reason why the reason should choose death alone. To say one would rather death than slavery is to say one will lay aside the will and one's reason as the means for making decisions and understanding the world. Would a free man rationally choose slavery due to external circumstances? No, because he would see that by subjecting his will to another in such a way that it contradicts his will he is doing himself more of a disservice than any good. To accept the situation otherwise is to be a slave because one accepts the subjection of one's own will at a disservice to oneself. A free man will know how to guide his actions so that he is not a subject.


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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Mon Aug 01, 2016 10:17 am

The Greeks understood that merchants and craftsmen were less willing to defend territory than farmers. (Xen. Oec. 6.4.8 )

Compare to the modern — Montesquieu suggested that banking will bills of exchange made it possible for rich citizens to leave a given polity ruled by a sovereign against their interests, thus reducing national revenues and the sovereign's effective power. (Montes. Spir. 4.21.20, 22.12-14; 4.20.4-5, 8 , 10-11, 20, 23)

There is a disadvantage for tyranny in relation to divisiveness, lack of trust, and a breakdown of social relations. (Plat. Rep. 9.578d - 579a, Xen. Hier. 4.3, Hellen. 5.2.7)

Paul Rahe wrote:
[Three] renowned orators considered the situation in fourth-century Greece so desperate that it demanded concerted action on the part of the various cities. Gorgias first sounded the theme in 392; Lysias took it up shortly thereafter; and, again and again, over a period of more than forty years, Isocrates returned to the same point: calling for a cooperative Panhellenic effort to conquer the Persian empire, appropriate its greath wealth and populate its vast reaches with colonies of Greek poor. Well before Alexander the Great did just that, Plato urged Dionysus II of Syracuse to repopulate the cities of Hellenic Sicily in much the same fashion; in due course, Timoleon of Corinth managed the feat. [The Ancient Regime]

Eating communally was recommended. (Arist. Pol. 1271a26-36)

The wealthy were admired for or demanded to performed public works. (Xen. Oec. 2.5-8, Arist. Pol. 1291a33-34, 1309a14-32, 1320a31-b11, 1321a31-b3)

Property (land and moveable goods) were not considered individual rights but trusts granted by the community. (Xen. Oec. 2.5.-8, Plat. Laws. 5.740a, 9.877d, 11.923a-b, Arist. Pol. 1262b37-1263b29, 1320a31-b11)

Trade and interaction with foreigners was understood as causing foreign ideas to interbreed and threaten the solidarity of the community. (Cic. Rep. 2.4.7-9, Arist. Pol. 1327a10-15, 32-40, Plat. Laws 12.949e-953e)

Compare with modern ideas of trade: Montes. Spir. 3.19.5-6, 8-9, 12, 14, 27, 4.20.1-2, 4-14, 23, 21.5-7, 16, 20, 22.8

Measures were made against economic activity so that citizen relations are not based on profiteering off one another. (Plat. Laws 4.704d-705b, Aris. Pol. 1327a32-40)

The modern view of the emancipation of greed which attends a commercial society is supposed to bring about new moral relations. (Montes. Spir. 1.5.6, 3.19.27, 4.20.2)
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Wed Aug 03, 2016 8:58 am

Aristotle feared that a society which existed only for the means of trade and protection would degenerate because there would be no bonds to hold citizens to the covenants of law except convention. (Arist. Pol. 1280b10-1281a10)

Citizens were prohibited from becoming merchants. (Xen. Oec. 4.3)

It was held necessary to deny political rights to those engaged in commerce. (Arist. Pol. 1277a37-b7, 1278b25-26, 1321a26-29, 1328b37-1329a2, 1278a34-38)

Commerce was necessary in a climate where resources were scarce, but it was desired that the harmful effects of commerce would not infect the political community. (Arist. Pol. 1327a11-40)

Boundless scientific invention were considered to make people soft in mind and body, making them accustomed to luxury and easily defeated in war. It also caused them to forget the reasons for tradition and become skeptical of old ways which threatened commonality. (Xen. Mem. 4.7)

Household management, for the sake of self-sufficiency, and the devotion of oneself to politics, war and thought were considered endeavours worthy of free men, but trade for the sake of unlimited accumulation was dishonourable. (Arist. Pol. 1256b26-1258b8, Plat. Laws. 11.918a-919c)

Because land was not saleable, loans could not be secured by it.

Those with wealth could hire others to manage their estates and instead devote themselves to politics and thought. (Arist. Pol. 1255b31-40, Xen. Oec. 9.11-13)

With the rise and spread of Christianity, monasticism introduced an ethic of toil. Men were made in the image of the creator who worked for six days to make the earth. Christ was a carpenter and his disciples were laborers — work was demanded as penance for sin. Thus did the ethic regarding work begin to change.

To work for continued acquisition despite possessing wealth was to be truly poor and lacking. (Xen. Sym. 4.35)
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:09 pm

I pretty much agree with all of what you have said and have nothing further to add.

Moving on..

Tell me your thoughts on Spartan society, moral code and the sense of duty in obtaining full citizen status, including infanticide, austere lifestyle and rigorous testing of member's constitutions, military based society, enslaved Helots and the segregation of sexes.
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:52 pm

Ethos,

Quote :
"mannequin"Does not a honorable loyal slave maintain ownership over his master within reason?

No, the so called honor of the slave is determined by the master, therefore it is part of the master's property and a quality for the master to revoke, beyond the will of the slave.

You see a person's honor as something being owned by another, a slave's honor being owned by the master?

A man may own his slave but he doesn't own what is within that slave which makes him who he is. The owner does not have the power to take from that man what he values within himself - unless he gives it away.

It is the same with individual value. If we disown who we are, we become slaves to ourselves.



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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:19 pm

remark wrote:
Ethos,

Quote :
"mannequin"Does not a honorable loyal slave maintain ownership over his master within reason?

No, the so called honor of the slave is determined by the master, therefore it is part of the master's property and a quality for the master to revoke, beyond the will of the slave.

You see a person's  honor as something being owned by another, a slave's honor being owned by the master?

You are mistaken here. I do not "see a person's  honor as something being owned by another". What I said was that the so-called honor of a slave is determined by the master, not that the honor of humans are deemed by the esteem of others.

remark wrote:
A man may own his slave but he doesn't own what is within that slave which makes him who he is.  The owner does not have the power to take from that man what he values within himself - unless he gives it away.

I agree with the first sentence, the second I believe to be conditional, and the third irrelevant in the original context. A slave may be truly himself and value his slavishness, so what? This is the beginning of a taxonomy of slaves which is only of interest to those wishing to emulate slavish natures, or perhaps for slave owners to understand their slaves.


Last edited by Ethos on Thu Aug 04, 2016 6:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:21 pm

mannequin wrote:
Tell me your thoughts on Spartan society, moral code and the sense of duty in obtaining full citizen status, including infanticide, austere lifestyle and rigorous testing of member's constitutions, military based society, enslaved Helots and the segregation of sexes.

This I cannot do. I am not currently conducting a study of Spartan society. If you think it would be valuable to do so, by all means use this space. If you want my opinion on specific issues I ask you to be specific. I do not have a crystallization of Sparta on hand. Besides this, it's unclear what thoughts you want on Sparta, whether it has relevance now, or whether Spartans missteped historically, or something else of that manner?
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PostSubject: Re: The Ancient Regime Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:00 am

It was just a general open question keeping in line with ancient systems, but it can wait for another time.
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