The Consolation of Philosophy

Guide: Louis Markos

Notes

1:31 Bringing Athens and Jerusalem Together

  • General and special revelation
  • What you can learn from non-Christian authors

4:09 Introduction to Boethius

  • What he is trying to do in The Consolation of Philosophy
  • The value of myth

9:15 The historical period

  • Rome during Boethius’ life
  • Theological disputes

13:42 Influences

  • Platonism and Neoplatonism
  • Aristotle
  • Stoics
  • Christianity

17:55 Other writing

  • Mathematics, music and astronomy

20:05 Translation

  • Translation of Greek texts into Latin
  • Greek becoming a lost language
  • Translations of Boethius into English by Alfred the Great, Chaucer, Elizabeth I

22:13 Opening of the book

  • Muses of Poetry and Lady Philosophy
  • Dante’s borrowing of the scene
  • Allegory
  • Poetry as an imitation of an imitation

27:25 Philosophy’s consolation

  • The fickle nature of Dame Fortune
  • The heavens and the sublunar world

33:16 Does Boethius know he’s going to die when he is writing the book?

  • Lewis’ argument

34:55 The nature of goodness

  • The permanent
  • Aristotle’s unmoved mover
  • God is goodness, happiness is union with God
  • Eudaimonia
  • The life of contemplation

40:25 The problems with the goods people seek, like wealth, power, fame

  • Impermanent 
  • Shadowy nature

42:30 Myth in Boethius

  • Allegorising myth before Boethius
  • Odysseus and Circe
  • Orpheus and Eurydice

49:43 God’s knowledge of the future

  • Foreknowledge and predestination
  • Infinity and eternity
  • The debate today

54:00 Fate and Providence

  • Fourth of July parade
  • Only see part of God’s plan

58:05 Influence of The Consolation of Philosophy

  • Ideas 
  • Influence of and on genre
  • Chaucer
  • Beowulf
  • Tolkien and Lewis

1:02:40 Recommendations

  • Louis Markos: The Myth Made Fact, From Achilles to Christ, From Plato to Christ
  • Milton’s Samson Agonistes
  • Dante’s Divine Comedy
  • Cicero’s The Dream of Scipio
  • Shakespeare’s King Lear
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