Thou whose deep ways are in the sea,Whose footsteps are not known,To-night a world that turned from TheeIs waiting — at Thy Throne.The towering Babels that we raisedWhere scoffing sophists brawl,The little Antichrists we praised —The night is on them all.
An end to wars, peace among the nations, the cessation of pillaging and violence such is our ideal, but only bourgeois sophists can seduce the masses with this ideal, if the latter is divorced from a direct and immediate call for revolutionary action.
The “democratisation” of the ownership of shares, from which the bourgeois sophists and opportunist so-called “Social-Democrats” expect (or say that they expect) the “democratisation of capital”, the strengthening of the role and significance of small scale production, etc., is, in fact, one of the ways of increasing the power of the financial oligarchy.
The age in which true history appeared in India was one of great intellectual and spiritual ferment. Mystics and sophists of all kinds roamed through the Ganga Valley, all advocating some form of mental discipline and asceticism as a means to salvation; but the age of the Buddha, when many of the best minds were abandoning their homes and professions for a life of asceticism, was also a time of advance in commerce and politics. It produced not only philosophers and ascetics, but also merchant princes and men of action.
The age in which true history appeared in India was one of great intellectual and spiritual ferment. Mystics and sophists of all kinds roamed through the Ganga Valley, all advocating some form of mental discipline and asceticism as a means to salvation; but the age of the Buddha , when many of the best minds were abandoning their homes and professions for a life of asceticism, was also a time of advance in commerce and politics. It produced not only philosophers and ascetics, but also merchant princes and men of action.
O Time! the beautifier of the dead , Adorner of the ruin, comforter And only healer when the heart hath bled Time! the corrector where our judgments err, The test of truth , love , sole philosopher , For all besides are sophists, from thy thrift Which never loses though it doth defer Time, the avenger! unto thee I lift My hands, and eyes , and heart , and crave of thee a gift .lord byron
I can smile with pity at the infidel whose vanity makes him dream that I should barter such a blessing for the few subtleties from the school of the cold-blooded sophists .
Many of the older sophists were selected as "ambassadors" of their cities, certainly no office of disrespect. The name Sophist was even applied without disparagement to Socrates and Plato themselves.
The halo around the heads of Plato and Socrates is now gone. He sees that they consistently are doing exactly that which they accuse the sophists of doing... using emotionally persuasive language for the ulterior purpose of making the weaker argument, the case for dialectic, appear the stronger. We always condemn most in others, he thought, that which we most fear in ourselves.
The bones of the sophists long ago turned to dust and what they said turned to dust with them and the dust was buried under the rubble of declining Athens through its fall and Macedonia through its decline and fall. Through the decline and death of ancient Rome and Byzantium and the Ottoman Empire and the modern states... buried so deep and with such ceremoniousness and such unction and such evil that only a madman centuries later could discover the clues needed to uncover them, and see with horror what had been done.Robert Pirsig
Skepticism with regard to the senses had troubled Greek philosophers from a very early stage... The sophists , notably Protagoras and Gorgias , had been led by the ambiguities and apparent contradictions of sense-perception to a subjectivism not unlike Hume's.
The auspices for philosophy are bad if, when proceeding ostensibly on the investigation of truth, we start saying farewell to all uprightness, honesty and sincerity, and are intent only on passing ourselves off for what we are not. We then assume, like those three sophists [Fichte, Schelling and Hegel], first a false pathos, then an affected and lofty earnestness, then an air of infinite superiority, in order to impose where we despair of ever being able to convince.Arthur Schopenhauer
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