To my mind, love…. both the sorts of love, which you remember Plato defines in his Banquet, served as the test of men.
Of late in Moscow and in the country, since he had become convinced that he would find no solution in the materialists, he had read and re-read thoroughly Plato, Spinoza, Kant, Schelling, Hegel, and Schopenhauer, the philosophers who gave a non-materialistic explanation of life.
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Plato famously said, "We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light."
I remember something Mrs. Harbor once said on one of her crazy tangents in English: that Plato believed that the whole world—everything we can see—was just like shadows on a cave wall.