Author Topic: Hospitals and courts  (Read 1987 times)

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Offline Porter ODoran

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Hospitals and courts
« on: March 02, 2015, 02:01:18 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

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Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2015, 05:20:00 PM »
What role does biology play in this?
"Well, do I convince you, that one ought never to despair of the disorders of the soul as incurable? ...For even if thou shouldst despair of thyself ten thousand times, I will never despair of thee" - St. John Chrysostom

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2015, 05:34:00 PM »
Do you mean in offering us problems to solve or in affecting our solutions?
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline orthonorm

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2015, 08:14:56 PM »
You left out the cost of education.

There is no question we live in a sick, imprisoned, and stupid society.

Good use of Plato to support a legitimate ideological critique.

Offline wgw

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2015, 08:47:05 PM »
At the same time does not the existence of hospitals and courts of law, which are infinitely better than those of Platos time, and influenced in how they operate by the Christian religion, as much as some would like to deny this, demonstrate that though sick, our society is acutely aware of its sickness and is struggling ever harder to do something about it?  We just need more Orthodox Christian thought.  But consider this: in the time of Thomas More, medicine was impressively ineffective and in England thieves were normally hanged.  An entire section of his work Utopia is basically an argument against executing thieves, providing various alternatives.  Indeed the Islamic practice of slicing off a hand looks less cruel in at least then the thief has a chance at life assuming shock or infection do not kill him.

Truly we have come along way from 16th century England, which represents in many respects the starting point of US history, with the emergence of the puritans who formed the initial colonists.
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Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2015, 08:55:33 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.
Are there better alternatives? I don't like going to the hospital, but I can't think of a better option when I've fallen and shattered my femur.
God bless!

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2015, 09:06:07 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.

Is Plato saying we'd be better off without hospitals or courts? Or that we wouldn't need them if our society were truly healthy? I suppose I can get on board with the latter to an extent: we certainly wouldn't need courts if we treated each other fairly. Whether we could do without hospitals is another matter: we'd need to equip every household with state of the art medical equipment, and train family members in medicine.

This quote is actual an interesting illustration of the distinction between moral and natural evil.

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2015, 10:00:18 PM »
Folks, the idea here is that it's better to be healthy and cooperative, in case that's not clear. The sign of a successful culture will be health and happiness, not gee-whiz medical technology and the most intricate legal system on record.
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2015, 10:01:46 PM »
This quote is actual an interesting illustration of the distinction between moral and natural evil.

What's the distinction?

Quote
I suppose I can get on board with the latter to an extent: we certainly wouldn't need courts if we treated each other fairly. Whether we could do without hospitals is another matter: we'd need to equip every household with state of the art medical equipment, and train family members in medicine.

In my opinion, that's like saying we might install a personal policeman in every hall.
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2015, 10:07:47 PM »
Folks, the idea here is that it's better to be healthy and cooperative, in case that's not clear. The sign of a successful culture will be health and happiness, not gee-whiz medical technology and the most intricate legal system on record.

A successful culture cures litigiousness, not measles.

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2015, 10:12:24 PM »

What's the distinction?

The distinction is that we can cure the one by simply following Christ's commandments; the other we are condemned to suffer no matter what we do.

Quote

In my opinion, that's like saying we might install a personal policeman in every hall.

I'm struggling to understand your failure to see the distinction I'm trying to make. We wouldn't need policemen, whether in our houses or on the streets, if we all abstained from sin. But no amount of good behavior is going to stave off all disease and injury, which is what doctors and hospitals are for. In order to fight natural evil we need specialized training and specialized equipment; to fight moral evil we only need to practice self-control.

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #11 on: March 02, 2015, 10:49:29 PM »
I can see you're fully convinced of this dichotomy, anyway.

Altho I must say, if there is no better or worse practical way to live, then why should we believe it when we are told there is a better or worse "spiritual"?

But in point of fact, there are healthier ways to live, healthier populations, and so on. Quite! Rotting teeth and cancer are Western illnesses for example. While the hospitals and nursing homes are crammed not with exotic sufferers, but with victims of "the American diet" -- diabetics, stroke and heart-attack sufferers. Even Alzheimers is being linked to way-of-life -- researchers call it Diabetes Type 3 ...
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2015, 12:21:34 AM »
I can see you're fully convinced of this dichotomy, anyway.

Altho I must say, if there is no better or worse practical way to live, then why should we believe it when we are told there is a better or worse "spiritual"?

But in point of fact, there are healthier ways to live, healthier populations, and so on. Quite! Rotting teeth and cancer are Western illnesses for example. While the hospitals and nursing homes are crammed not with exotic sufferers, but with victims of "the American diet" -- diabetics, stroke and heart-attack sufferers. Even Alzheimers is being linked to way-of-life -- researchers call it Diabetes Type 3 ...

Before modern medicine, most people didn't live long enough to experience these other things. Do you seriously believe people were healthier in the "good old days"? Spiritually healthier I can accept, but your romanticism knows no bounds, I guess.

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2015, 02:01:40 AM »
I've not contrasted modern and premodern times, but I suppose you're feeling the prick of conviction? Regardless, let's instead contrast modern and far-modern times: You are traveling through time and space and fall into a land in which everyone is rosy and healthy. Are you able to be more impressed with this than with brochures from modern-day Johns Hopkins?

To your dichotomy, another assay: What of mental health? On which side of your wall does this belong?
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline wgw

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2015, 06:53:53 AM »
Ss. Basil and John Chrysostom built hospitals.   Saying we should live healthier lives is one thing, but your own tabline is that piety consists of following the example of the Fathers.  Well follow Basil and John Chrysostom, and Gregory of Nazianzus, who worked to improve medical care in their dioceses.   

Regarding mental health, IMO the Orthodox Church needs to increase its presence in this domain.  Our priests have the ability to do something no psychiatrist can: exorcise demons.  I believers there to be at least a few thousand and probably ,any thousands withering away in Psychiatric ICUs with things like "atypical manic depressive disorder, with violent episodes, not responsive to treatment."  Most people in the mental hospital have diesels that can be treated and cured and will eventually be released, but some don't.  Only an Orthodox priest can provide a cure.  But in most cases our priests can't even get in the front door.  For this reason I believe a high geopolitical priority for the Orthodox Church should be control over the behavioral health industry.  We should setup LLC awith church money to invest in companies working in this field, and take measures to make sure at least one Orthodox clinician is employed at every mental institution in every country with an Orthodox population, and we should be ruthless about it.   

If the Mormons can run Marriott Hotels and dominate the genealogy business with ancestry.com, which supports their own proxy baprism activities, the Orthodox Church, which is hundreds of times larger and more powerful, should be able to easily gain enough control over mental health so as to at least slash the number of institutionalized demonaics, if not end the problem.  And unlike the Mormon initiatives with Proxy Baptism, this would actually make a real difference in people's lives, healing families, slashing medical expenses for the government, and giving people their freedom and dignity back.  Even if in some cases we had to conduct exorcisms surreptitiously it would probably be worth it. And we should equip our monasteries surreptitiously with psychiatric capabilities, so we can evaluate disturbed parishioners and attempt to exorcise them before releasing them to a mental hospital.  This last aspect would have to remain an absolute secret of the church, protected with the same integrity as the confessional seal.

I would go a step further.  On this forum we have discussed the problem with Celiac Disease, alcoholism and the Eucharist.  IMO both these diseases are Satanic attempts to interfere with the life giving Communion, the difference being the former is an environmental auto immune disease and the latter behavioral and self induced.  But either way, they both represent threats to the ability of the baptized faithful to partake of the holy and life giving Eucharist.  The Church needs to get in front of this.  Every Orthodox jurisdiction should have IMO a Chief Medical Pfficer to coordinate church operations.  In addition, a special security service to ensure the needed freedom from interference with regards to our behavioral health initiatives and to protect our monasteries is a must, particularly in the Middle East.   We must be as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves.
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Offline LenInSebastopol

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2015, 10:22:42 AM »
Without reading all the posts, the alternatives to hospitals and prisons is let the sick die and kill all that get in the way. So, Plato had it right?
OK, now I'll read the other posts....ignorance IS bliss.
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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #16 on: March 03, 2015, 11:15:04 AM »
Without reading all the posts, the alternatives to hospitals and prisons is let the sick die and kill all that get in the way. So, Plato had it right?
OK, now I'll read the other posts....ignorance IS bliss.

From what I can tell, he's saying that it would be better not to need hospitals and courts.  If society wasn't sick we could reduce the need, though I doubt we could remove the need all together.  I believe it was Trisigion who said above that he likes hospitals for when he breaks a femur.  This is something that isn't going away.  Having people hospitalized because they have herpes or are horrifically obese is something they generally have some level of control over.
Das ist des Jägers Ehrenschild, daß er beschützt und hegt sein Wild, weidmännisch jagt, wie sich’s gehört, den Schöpfer im Geschöpfe ehrt.

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2015, 11:48:13 AM »
I've not contrasted modern and premodern times, but I suppose you're feeling the prick of conviction? Regardless, let's instead contrast modern and far-modern times: You are traveling through time and space and fall into a land in which everyone is rosy and healthy. Are you able to be more impressed with this than with brochures from modern-day Johns Hopkins?

To your dichotomy, another assay: What of mental health? On which side of your wall does this belong?

If everyone is healthy without the need for intensive medical care of the kind you can only get in hospitals, I suppose I will have landed in a world where:

- every possible risk of injury has been removed, i.e. a nanny state gone insane OR everyone has acquired magical instant healing powers
- every infectious disease has been eliminated through some new magical ability to develop instant immunity against every new pathogen that turns up
- every inherited disease has been eliminated through some super genetic engineering

We would need enormous, unforeseeable scientific advances to eliminate the need for hospitals, in other words. It's not a problem that can be fixed just by ordering society in the right way. That's why I don't think courts and hospitals are equivalent.

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #18 on: March 03, 2015, 01:08:10 PM »
And yet you remained convinced of magical possibilities (to be analogous) on the other side of your arbitrary division. If you happened up on a land of no jails, you would say, Praise God, they read the Bible here.

Care to take a crack at my question in re your dichotomy and mental health?
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2015, 01:15:12 PM »
And yet you remained convinced of magical possibilities (to be analogous) on the other side of your arbitrary division. If you happened up on a land of no jails, you would say, Praise God, they read the Bible here.

Care to take a crack at my question in re your dichotomy and mental health?

I feel like we're talking at cross-purposes here. You cite Plato to the effect that the presence of courts and hospitals shows we are a sick society. I think that applies for courts, since courts only exist to try people for crimes, which they wouldn't commit if they behaved their best, or to pursue civil lawsuits, which again wouldn't be necessary if people treated each other fairly. But as long as disease and injury are with us, we will need hospitals. Even the saints suffered disease and injury. Courts and hospitals are not equivalent. Maybe they were equivalent in Plato's day, but not today.

Offline TheTrisagion

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #20 on: March 03, 2015, 02:32:36 PM »
And yet you remained convinced of magical possibilities (to be analogous) on the other side of your arbitrary division. If you happened up on a land of no jails, you would say, Praise God, they read the Bible here.
Care to take a crack at my question in re your dichotomy and mental health?
No. I would probably think, my gosh, they execute people for EVERYTHING around here!
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Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #21 on: March 03, 2015, 02:42:07 PM »
Same difference. ;)
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Quote from: Seekingtrue
Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline vamrat

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #22 on: March 03, 2015, 05:37:03 PM »
Das ist des Jägers Ehrenschild, daß er beschützt und hegt sein Wild, weidmännisch jagt, wie sich’s gehört, den Schöpfer im Geschöpfe ehrt.

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #23 on: March 03, 2015, 05:41:13 PM »
And yet you remained convinced of magical possibilities (to be analogous) on the other side of your arbitrary division. If you happened up on a land of no jails, you would say, Praise God, they read the Bible here.
Care to take a crack at my question in re your dichotomy and mental health?
No. I would probably think, my gosh, they execute people for EVERYTHING around here!

In theory, I like the concept of draconian laws.  Have very few and very simple laws that are posted so that everyone knows what they are, and when someone breaks the law punish them very harshly.  There are definite drawbacks to too harsh of punishments.  Most of all, I like the idea of few, simple laws.
Das ist des Jägers Ehrenschild, daß er beschützt und hegt sein Wild, weidmännisch jagt, wie sich’s gehört, den Schöpfer im Geschöpfe ehrt.

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #24 on: March 03, 2015, 05:45:55 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.

Great topic.
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Offline LenInSebastopol

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2015, 10:25:54 AM »
Folks, the idea here is that it's better to be healthy and cooperative, in case that's not clear. The sign of a successful culture will be health and happiness, not gee-whiz medical technology and the most intricate legal system on record.

Saw The Grand Budapest Hotel film. Very Platonic film, as it shows there are troubles in this life i.e. criminals, prisons, hospitals, love, etc, but if we were civilized life would be delightful, no?
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Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2015, 11:18:11 AM »
Folks, the idea here is that it's better to be healthy and cooperative, in case that's not clear. The sign of a successful culture will be health and happiness, not gee-whiz medical technology and the most intricate legal system on record.

Saw The Grand Budapest Hotel film. Very Platonic film, as it shows there are troubles in this life i.e. criminals, prisons, hospitals, love, etc, but if we were civilized life would be delightful, no?

Pastries aren't Platonic.

Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2015, 11:19:00 AM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.

Great topic.

It was potentially an interesting topic until Porter decided that we could not tolerate any disagreement with St Plato.  ::)

Offline LenInSebastopol

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #28 on: March 04, 2015, 01:02:30 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.

Great topic.

It was potentially an interesting topic until Porter decided that we could not tolerate any disagreement with St Plato.  ::)

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Offline LenInSebastopol

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #29 on: March 04, 2015, 01:03:33 PM »
Folks, the idea here is that it's better to be healthy and cooperative, in case that's not clear. The sign of a successful culture will be health and happiness, not gee-whiz medical technology and the most intricate legal system on record.

Saw The Grand Budapest Hotel film. Very Platonic film, as it shows there are troubles in this life i.e. criminals, prisons, hospitals, love, etc, but if we were civilized life would be delightful, no?

Pastries aren't Platonic.

Well, during this Season they are. ::)
« Last Edit: March 04, 2015, 01:04:06 PM by LenInSebastopol »
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Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2015, 02:51:18 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.

Great topic.

It was potentially an interesting topic until Porter decided that we could not tolerate any disagreement with St Plato.  ::)

No, you've been back and forth with St. Porter. Mostly back. Scrambling on the crag of my mental health question, I take it.
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Offline Jonathan Gress

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Re: Hospitals and courts
« Reply #31 on: March 04, 2015, 03:06:44 PM »
I'll paraphrase rather than quote our father among the pagans Plato:

The presence of hospitals and courts of law is not so much indications of society as sign that a culture has failed bodies and souls.

There are two areas of growth in American society that has hurtled us far ahead of the rest of the world: cost of healthcare, and number of imprisoned. In addition, the nature of the way we manage our hospitals and clinics and nursing homes, and our legislation and lawyers and courts seems to be virulent and metastasizing rapidly out of control (I should know about the former, as my wife and I both work in the health industry).

If this is granted, then Plato's teaching takes on a new interest for us in America, and I thought it would be worth some discussion.

Great topic.

It was potentially an interesting topic until Porter decided that we could not tolerate any disagreement with St Plato.  ::)

No, you've been back and forth with St. Porter. Mostly back. Scrambling on the crag of my mental health question, I take it.

LOL. I'm not going to let you change the subject that easily. You began the thread with that quote by Plato where he says courts and hospitals are the symptoms of a sick society. I said he was right about courts, wrong about hospitals, and instead of addressing this you want to go off on some tangent about mental health.