Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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The Divided Line Merrimack College imposes two sets of course requirements on all students, an institutional and distribution requirement. It is not known why the college imposes these requirements, but they can be looked at through a Platonic perspective and can be figured out why the college may impose these requirements. The role of mathematics plays an important role in the platonic way of teaching philosophers, and it also plays an important role in the requirements of the college. But one must figure out why these requirements play such a role and why mathematics plays such an important part in teaching and it can be found out by looking at the concept of the divided line in Plato's Republic.

The divided line is broken up into 2 main parts with four different components in these main parts. Imagination is at the bottom of the line; it has to do with the images that you see and the physical aspect of things.

Above imagination is trust, that is the sensible things, objects. These two things make up the visible aspect of the divided line. Above trust is thought, which is objects of mathematics. And above this is intellection, which are the ideas. Once one has reached the top of the divided line and understood all the components, they have reached the good itself. The good itself is the cause of everything else. Because one is striving for the good itself, they must take each step on the divided line in order to reach the good. The divided line is considered the outline of the education of philosophers. Philosophers must learn all of the components of the divided line to reach the good itself, which to them is the greatest achievement. One is always striving to go from becoming to...