Because wisdom's not easy to master,
His pursuit thus expired in disaster.
How much "Wiser the Sophists,
Who for reasonable profits,
Could provide it a hundred times faster!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9309

Still, through Plato's (his pupil) survival,
His ideas were assured a revival.
They were right for their time,
But his countrymen's crime
Simply made them postpone their arrival.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9309

Said Socrates, while in his cell,
"I drank it and I don't feel well.
If I may opine,
It tasted like wine.
The hemlock I cannot expel.
--- Al Willis P9710

The great Greek philosopher Socrates,
Pondered deeply on how the world rotates.
But his work came to naught,
Because most of man's thought
Originates in his macho nates.
--- Arthur Deex P0108

I once knew a gal Phyllis Sophical
Who lived in a region quite tropical.
She'd often reflect
On how Socratic
Observations today are still topical.
--- Anon

Who's wish to be wed to Xanthippe?
When Socrates took his last sip, he
Died slowly, feet first,
After which his wife cursed,
And remarked that her husband was dippy.
--- Nicholas Goodison P9709

Lady Heloise took, as her suitor,
Peter Abelard, scholar and tutor.
But her nasty old uncle
Made him live like a monk will,
By changing his gender to neuter.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9305

So this tragic logician and poet
Loved the lady, but had to forego it.
For her family made haste
To unfasted his waist
And cut short what he carried below it.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9305

(Yes I know!--though I chose to append him--
Such details aren't my proper agendum.
What should interest us, finally,
As one's vies doctrinally,
Not the fate that befalls his pudendum.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9305

As for doctrines this thinker brought forward,
In their day, they were hardly ignored.
But although it's no crime
To commit them to rhyme,
If I did so, I'm sure you'd be bored.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9305

Not too far from Miletus by birth,
He found Athens of somewhat more worth.
Or at least that's his attitude,
Till expelled, with ingratitude,
For saying the moon's made of earth.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9503

Not just four now, but ever so many!--
Thus the man from the town of Clazomenae.
And no portions you find
Lacks for some of each kind:
Want some gold? Well, there's some in each penny!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9503

Thus let's not--to give pause for a minute--
How his thought has a flaw to begin it:
Each natural item
Splits ad infinitum.
So he thought each has everything in it.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9503

Anaxagoras then, had supposed
What things "are" is just what they are most.
Would you call a thing such?
It depends on how much.
(Otherwise, your whole meal's in your toast!)
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9503

To be fair, though, he'd also maintain,
Not all being is quite this mundane.
For who'd dare be so blind
As to think Cosmic Mind
Could exist on so tawdry a plane?!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9503

So far as we know this man textually,
Cosmic Mind does its work intellectually.
He found Sicily's mystic
Too physicalistic,
When he viewed it as functionally sexually!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9503

To this thinker, were water ubiquitous,
Cosmic law would be wholly iniquitous.
Whether hotter or cooler,
If water's the ruler,
There'd be nowhere that isn't where liquid is.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9410

Unless cosmic injustice is gross,
There's a source from which everything flows.
So it's not only prior
To earth, wind, and fire,
But more basic than pure H2O is!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9410

Well what's that, I might ask, if not air?
(After all, as you'll grant, it's quite bare!)
And what doesn't seem airy?
That's just how it would vary
When it's made either denser or rare.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9410

So the Water that Thales as bound to:
What in fact does it really amount to?
It's just air we decree,
But of different degree.
For that's all in the end it boils down to.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9410

Water, Air, or whatever the rage is--
Here's a truth that's survived through the ages:
Don't just ask "What's it made of!"
But become quantitative,
And attack it with rulers and guages.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9410

On the world-view these thinkers acknowledged,
All internal distinction abolished.
Throughout the world's areas,
Only two thing are various:
A thing's size, and how smoothly it's polished.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9504

What are "things" then?--the Atomists quiz you.
There no question more suited to busy you!
Well, to answer the riddle:
They're all hard and quite little.
And whirling so fast it would dizzy you.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9504

For the Atomists--should we go back to 'm--
There's just 'atoms' surrounded by vacuum.
What they're made of, you query us?
That remains quite mysterious:
They alone are what seemed to be fact to 'm.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9504

Thus the Atomist's favorite theme:
Things are never the same as they seem.
Be they smooth or more spiny,
Since they're all very tiny,
Human eyes aren't permitted to see 'm.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9504

As for "fact", when our senses inform us,
The distortion's no less than enormous.
For what's seen's (per this wisdom)
Just our own nervous system,
After hordes of those little things storm us.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9504

A mystical poet from Sicily,
He gave science romantic simplicity:
Earth, air, fire, and water
Formed his natural order.
Love and Hate kept them moving unceasingly.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9502

So (dispensing with hollow amenities),
There's some error espoused by Parmenides.
Though our basis is static,
Still it's not Eleatic.
For it moves to form countless identities.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9502

Though their action's in general concommitant,
Cosmic cycles have one force that's dominant.
Through pure Hate, natural articles
Tend to burst into particles.
Through pure Love, general merger is prominent.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9502

Time alone, though, gives grounds to maintain
Whether Loving or Hate's on the wane.
Are we heading toward fusion
Or complete dissolution?
Never mind, it'll all come again.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9502

Were we awed by what struck Heraclitus,
We'd have movement and flux to excite us.
Life's a stream not stepped twice in,
Is a thought that's enticing',
Just like "Fish in it never twice bite us!"
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9412

Wherever we're stationed or quartered,
We can see that the world is well-ordered.
But the form one admires
Is much like a fire's.
That strike something more evely bordered
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9412

Thus our logic may lack the perfectitude
That Pythagoras proffered as rectitude.
But at least I"m not lowly,
Eating past'a fagioli,
Nor are sexual stigmas connected to it.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9412

This is file upl

What is truth? queried Pilate in jest.
Is it one, say, North, South, East and West?
Now in answer to Pontius,
William James makes us conscious
It's whatever works out for the best.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9405

Some say knowledge is finally perfected
When our thoughts and "the facts" are connected.
But what's fact to this faction
But some thought's satisfaction?
If it's more, after all, who'd detect it?
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9405

Still, if pragmatist's ways are victorious,
Don't suppose that mere dreaming's made glorious.
Lacking practical differences,
Any thinker's bald inferences
Would at most just comfirm what a bore he is!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9405

Thus this theory, assuming you buy it,
Says you make a thought true as you try it.
So don't live like a hermit:
Got a thought?--Then confirm it!
There's no truth in ideas that stay quiet.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9405

Is there God, or a Heavenly firmament?
Are there values in life that stay permanent?
There's just one sure criterion
To base any such theory on:
How's one's life to be changed by affirmin' it?
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9405

Whether science or mystical cult,
Here's a truth, then, as pragmatists cull it.
Don't prejudge--all that gets you is
The name Impetuous.
Simply try it, and check the result!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9405

The famous philosopher, Kant,
Said, "Why when I run, do I pant?
I fear 'twould be treason
To my Critique of Reason
To think I'm unfit, so I shan't."
--- C S Cook

An example of Kant's sterling wit
Was his theory that farts could be lit,
And it's said that all night
By the flickering light,
He composed his "Critique of Pure Shit".
--- Victor Gray

The cryptic philosopher, Kant
Announced, "I most certainly shan't
In my Prolegomena
Allow that phenomena
Are anything but what they aren't."
--- E F C

Der alt' Philosoph genannt Kant
Hat die reine Vernunft als Trabant.
Zeit war seine Buhle,
In seinem Nachtstuhle,
Ward die Zukunft des Weltraums gekannt.
--- L1452

The old philosopher named Kant,
Had pure reason for his playmate,
Time was his paramour,
And in his night-stool,
The future of time and cosmic space could be read.
--- Anon

Like Pythagoras, living in Italy,
What they say's awfully hard to take literally.
But they saound so emphatic,
Saying Being is static,
It seem clear they're not sayng it wittily.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9501

Of Parmenides, then, or of Zeno,
You'll be tempted to say "What does he know!"
If he thinks Logic proves
Nothing changes or moves--
Then he must have consumed too much vino!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9501

Still, Parmenides says, there's no doubt of it:
Being's such that there's just one amount of it.
Since Nonbeing's just fraught,
It can't even the thought;
Therefore, nothing goes in or comes out of it!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9501

Pythagoras formed a society
That saw numbers as objects of piety.
From mere ratio and fraction,
They derived satisfaction
Of a quasi-religious variety.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

The whole world -- if their view's not erroneous--
Is a God that's well-tuned and harmonious.
So of course they're estatic
When waxing mathematic:
As they do so, how much the more known He is!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

It was musical measures and ratios
That first hinted at vistas this spacious.
For each song, to these seers.
Was like Music of Spheres,
Tracing paths, each precisely curvacious.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

In addition, the group held canonic,
Knowing God makes your soul more harmonic.
For the more that you're partisan,
All the more that your heart is in
Attune with God's Architectonic.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

This, they held (like the cult known as Orphic),
We once had but, alas!, had to forfeit.
So let's ruse or keep falling
To a state (how appalling!)
Even lower than anthropomorphic!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

To insure such a fate's not eventual,
Don't give in (all that much) to what's sensual.
If you'd rather not worry,
Then it's reason you'll curry,
Or at least if you have any sense you will!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

It's pure reason alone that can glean
The proportions that shape the world-scene.
Only that's what can raise us
To share in God's graces.
(If we don't, by the way, eat a bean!)
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

Yes, one part of this deal (should you buy it)
Is taboo touching sex and our diet.
Why no beans? No one knows.
But the point, I suppose,
Is to help keep our lowly part quiet.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9411

What is Nature? or Truth? Who can probe them?
And Philosophers? (Once we disrobe them!)
Since their skill's just persuation,
Why not skip the evasion,
And admit that's the name of our Program?!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9505

Now while sophist meant "wise" at the time--
Who says wisdoms a gift that's divine?
So they charged to purvey it!
That's their right; who'd gainsay it?
(And who'd doubt, it's at least worth a dime.)
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9505

On the other hand, skipping pretensions,
This new wisdom's mere grasp of conventions:
What persuades an Athenian
Might just strike an Armenian
As merely "sophist" inventions!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9505

So the Sophists made some people nervous.
Nonetheless, they provided a service.
For though non-metaphysical,
They at least became quizical
About values that lie on our surface.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9505

In the sermons of Bishop Augustine,
There's a stance that some say is disgustin'.
For on this, his terms,
We're worthless as worms,
Without help from the God that we trust in.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

Were we left to our own poor devices,
We'd all wallow in vermin and vices.
Only Heavenly Grace
Sheds light in our face,
And first gives us an inkling what nice is.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

Though it might get some humanists miffed,
I'd be helpless without such a gift.
Born with Sin that's Original,
I'd be trapped in my pigeon-hole,
Without wings that give power to lift.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

And what's more--here's how weak our acumen is:
Nothing's known unless God makes it luminous.
The most trivial verity
Calls for graces and charity
That could only derive from what's numinous.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

(Incidentally, since numbers appease 'em,
Polytheists might share in this theism:
When Augustine's the boss,
Only one god can awe us,
But this one's, at the same time, a threesome!
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

On the view that he clung to with brio,
God's a solo, but also a trio.
And ideas, he opined,
Are all thoughts in his mind.
(So he's also Platonic--though "neo-".)
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

So from A, B, and C, down to Zeta,
If it's good, just say "Thank you Creator!"
And try hard--as you might--
To use all his gifts right,
So you also can say "See you later!"
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9303

In the days that were still pre-Socratic,
Abstract thought was a trifle erratic.
So let's try not to sneer,
When from Thales we hear,
That all things are at bottom, aquatic.
--- Lim Hist of Philos P9410