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Monday, November 10, 2014

Greece 2.300 years ago. And Today?

I am presently reading a book about Alexander the Great by Robin Lane Fox and I came across the paragraph which I cite below. It comments on Greek society around 330 BC, or about 2.300 years ago. In brackets, I put today's equivalent of the terms applicable 2.300 years ago. Sort of striking; isn' it? 

"War [political conflict] was the natural state of every Greek city [Greek society]. In theory, they were considered to be at war [in conflict] with each other, except for particular cases where they had sworn a temporary alliance and theory was usually born out in practice. Greece … was a society obsessed with instability and poisened with revolution … It was a living proof that the Greeks had failed to produce any political and economic form which could hold a community together".


  1. And the point I assume is that we have not changed in 2,300 years? ok I agree.

    But in retrospect, it is the same society which gave all the greatness mankind has to be thankful for. Mathematics, Science, Philosophy, Language and Technology.

    As our great philosopher stated, know thyself. We know who we are. And it is because of this we are struggling to seek a way into improving our modern society. And we will evolve into a new self and succeed.


  2. @V
    Sigh! For me "Know thyself" would never make me reflect on what my ancestors achieved or my successors may achieve in the future. For me it means, who am I now? What do I do? How do I behave? What are my values? As for all your struggles to improve society or even Europe, small steps, start with??? Thyself.
    And since Klaus has brought up the relevance, Start with Alexander the Great and his oath from 324 BC ----"with common laws, governed by men of merit, regardless of race. I do not distinguish between Greeks and barbarians, as do the narrow minded. I am not interested in the country or race of origin of people, I only distinguish people according to their virtues. To me every virtuous foreigner is Greek and each non-virtuous Greek is worse than a barbarian. As for myself, I consider all persons, black and white, as equals".

    1. @ Lennard

      Nice reply.


  3. History teaches lessons. Glories of the past occurred only when the financials were in good standing so strong army could be built and thus control of world resources could be exploited.

    Athens prospered when it managed to defeat the Persians and take control over the trade roots of the eastern Med. THEN and only then it produced arts and sciences in an astonishing rate for such a short period of time. Macedonia was able to build a great army with gold produced by its gold mines. Then it could control other nations' wealth.

    Today, the US prospers more or less for the same reasons. China is following the same route too. History repeating itself times and again. Finances first and then the rest!