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Nietzsche, Plato, Heraclitus and the pursuit of illuminate dwelling

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This essay delineates points of agreement and disagreement between Plato and Nietzsche with respect to the original Heraclitean argument that the underlying dynamic connective structure of the whole is ‘strife’. Also discussed is the issue of how each philosopher understands life itself, as a general process, to be related to the wider processive whole. The paper analyses how the Heraclitean understanding of the natural whole influences each philosopher's interpretation of the political structures of man. The analysis attempts to demonstrate why for Nietzsche, on one hand, the value forms of the traditional polis are more in accord with human nature and nature in toto than is philosophy and why for Plato, on the other hand, when the value forms of the polis are superseded by those of philosophy it is a natural process rather than contrary to nature.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 215 Harwood Avenue, Sleepy Hollow, NY 10591, USA.

Publication date: 1998-04-01

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