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Observations placeholder

Diotima – 01 Eros and his nature



Type of Spiritual Experience


Eros here is a personification/function of Higher spirit



A description of the experience

Symposium – Plato [Translator: B. Jowett]

First I said to her … that Love was a mighty god, and likewise fair; and she proved to me …that, by my own showing, Love was neither fair nor good.
'What do you mean, Diotima,' I said, 'is love then evil and foul?'
'Hush,' she cried;'must that be foul which is not fair?'
 'Certainly,' I said.
 'And is that which is not wise, ignorant? do you not see that there is a mean between wisdom and ignorance?'
 'And what may that be?' I said.
'Right opinion,' she replied; 'which, as you know, being incapable of giving a reason, is not knowledge (for how can knowledge be devoid of reason? nor again, ignorance, for neither can ignorance attain the truth), but is clearly something which is a mean between ignorance and wisdom.'
'Quite true,' I replied.
'Do not then insist,' she said, 'that what is not fair is of necessity foul, or what is not good evil; or infer that because love is not fair and good he is therefore foul and evil; for he is in a mean between them.'
'Well,' I said, 'Love is surely admitted by all to be a great god.'
 'By those who know or by those who do not know?'
 'By all.'
'And how, Socrates,' she said with a smile, 'can Love be acknowledged to be a great god by those who say that he is not a god at all?'
'And who are they?' I said.
'You and I are two of them,' she replied.
 'How can that be?' I said.
 'It is quite intelligible,' she replied; 'for you yourself would acknowledge that the gods are happy and fair--of course you would--would you dare to say that any god was not?'
'Certainly not,'I replied.
'And you mean by the happy, those who are the possessors of things good or fair?'
 'And you admitted that Love, because he was in want, desires those good and fair things of which he is in want?'
'Yes, I did.'
 'But how can he be a god who has no portion in what is either good or fair?'
'Then you see that you also deny the divinity of Love.'

'What then is Love?' I asked; 'Is he mortal?'


'What then?'

'As in the former instance, he is neither mortal nor immortal, but in a mean between the two.'

'What is he, Diotima?'

 'He is a great spirit (daimon), and like all spirits he is intermediate between the divine and the mortal.'

The source of the experience

Diotima of Mantinea

Concepts, symbols and science items




Science Items

Activities and commonsteps



Love with visualisation