i n P l a t o ' s A l c i b i a d e s
Socrates: Do you not remember saying that you were in great perplexity, lest perchance you should ask for evil, [150c] supposing that you were asking for good?
Alcibiades: I do.
Socrates: You see, then, how unsafe it is for
you to approach the God with your prayers, for it may chance that when
he hears your irreverent speech he will reject your sacrifice altogether,
and make you partake of other evils as well.
Alcibiades: Well, how long must I wait, Socrates, and who is to be my teacher? For I feel I should very much like to see who the man is.
Socrates: It is he who takes an especial interest in you. But I think, as Homer relates how Athena removed the mist from the eyes of Diomede,
[150e] so you too must first have the mist removed which now enwraps your soul, and then the means may be given to you whereby you may distinguish between good and evil.
For at present I do not think you could do so.
Alcibiades: Let my instructor remove the mist or whatever else he likes to call it: for I am prepared to obey every one of his commands, without shirking, whoever the man may be, so long as I am to be the better for them.
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Copyright ©1999 Roy George