Socrates v. The State

  • Socrates v. The State

    Posted by Craig Matheson on December 27, 2022 at 12:59 pm

    Socrates v. The State

    ‘Twas the 5th C before our Common Era,

    And alive at the same time…three men;

    Buddhic, Confucian, Socratic sierras

    Shaping horizons bound by zen.

    Therein India, China or Athens,

    A change was indeed underway;

    The climate of citizen passions

    Was warming, but ‘high’ dismay.

    A ‘royal pain’ felt for the great masses?

    So annoying to imagine their struggle!

    But a new icon for common classes?!

    An elite could sense fortune or trouble.

    The Buddha mulled dharma in India

    While pondering the sanity of ‘the system’,

    As Confucius reflected in China

    Upon ethics, morality and wisdom.

    But perhaps the most tested of the three,

    Only Socrates did battle in war;

    Then on to challenge the ‘powers that be’

    So much that they slammed his door!

    What had gripped ‘Socrates the Great’,

    Was it trauma from war’s savage combat?

    Renown for legioned defence of the state,

    He survived to later test ‘The Format’.

    Widely-viewed as a brave fighting hero,

    He’d rescued fellow soldiers in battle.

    The State eventually ground him to zero

    For intellectually-prodding ‘the cattle’.

    “True knowledge” he said, the “best good”

    But bad for engineering hive mind.

    By contending ALL was NOT understood,

    Some deemed him acting unkind.

    To consult others upon “true knowledge”

    He’d advise that’s therein Self-search;

    Devine inspiration. Not mental bondage

    Of a blind faith in any State-church.

    He carved path for Plato and Aristotle,

    But were these Greeks so much alike?

    Plato compelled to apply more throttle

    Once his mentor was seized by the reich.

    Plato’d never “known” the life of war;

    Aristotle sought the grace of a prince;

    Such cherished visions of elite adore

    Had swelled upon Socratic Waves since.

    ‘The Maker’ himself nary wrote his way,

    Instead walked the Athenian streets;

    Plato was later moved to parlay

    And published a version of his feats.

    Big State-Plato penned his Republic

    Twenty years beyond Socrates’s death;

    As some’d wished forgotten ‘the lunatic’

    His vibe’d settled deep in social breadth.

    Since those times past many a year

    And still valued are Socratic opinions;

    Despite them fielding ridicule and jeer

    From esteemed gurus, or allied minions.

    Into the Greek forum, he’d cut new space

    For openly questioning a State actor;

    Knowledge the tool, not spear or mace,

    As new weapon for any civic detractor.

    More women’s rights, he’d argued a duty;

    Some saying: he’s too ugly to ignore.

    He’d challenged the definition of “beauty”;

    The State accused him guilty of more.

    He refused faith in any Greek deities

    While’d praised phony gods on a lark;

    He’d done as much with little anonymity,

    “I know what I don’t know”, his mark.

    He’d seen it wise to get lost in talking

    While in search to find one’s lead,

    If even such endpoints stirred a mocking,

    Such banter germane to his creed.

    Socrates and Jung both figured the same:

    It’s Rare Folks “Knowingly” Act Wrong;

    That if (by habit) there’s others to blame

    Our shadow projects wide and long.

    Impassioned to rule not upon a soul;

    Liberty for each woman and man.

    Where the State defines a ‘hero’s role’,

    He’d say: seek own Devine plan.

    Scientific theory and Common law;

    Both forged in-the-fires of open debate.

    His rigorous style exposed previous flaw,

    And without it…non-sense more innate.

    Not ‘Magnificent’ alike Suleiman,

    Nor ‘Great’ like the ravenous Alexander.

    Socrates executed as a free-thinking man

    Of Promethean fire, and candour.

    So…for this fellow, shall we raise a glass?!

    An Athenian the State took to task.

    Socrates the Good, or Socrates the Crass?

    From within, he’d advised us to ask.

    Craig Matheson replied 1 year, 5 months ago 1 Member · 0 Replies
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