Eros & the Return of the Ancient Order w/ Michael Michailidis | Learning In Public 23


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Michael Michailidis from the channel, Ancient Greece Revisited, joins us.

Our shared interests include modern liberal democratic states eschewing the

development of virtue in their citizenry, eros as the drive for harmony,

holistic thinking, natural political orders,

myth/narrative and more…


Approximate Time Markers for Discussion Topics:






Modernity being a break with classical wisdom and ancient order. 

Difficult identity of contemporary Greeks, catching up to rest of

Europe after 400 years of Ottoman occupation.

Transcending left/right dichotomy.



The intellectual break of the Enlightenment, Descartes.



More on how methods of modern thought represent a rupture with what came before.

Ancient Greek approach to geometry as opposed to what

we think of as math today, abstract numbers. 

Geometry was based on symmetry, proportions. 

Michael actually relates this to analog versus digital music recording.



Atomists–reductionist style thinking tending to appear

towards the  end of societal cycles.


More on the break/change in consciousness of the early Enlightenment. 

John on how modern writing is different, social engineering aspect.



A broader view of conspiracy theories

“The lie that tells the truth.”



Elitism, social order. 

The dance between universals and particulars,

how globalism currently tries to confuse people, make us think we are “all one”—

even when there could be truth to that notion. 

The modern world being a bureaucratic order.

Modernity “trains” through bureaucracy.

The four political orders, if you throw one out, what are you replacing it with?

Myth having to work alongside law/systems.



Creating new myth now. Modern conundrum of trying to connect with old traditions. 

Reaching out to the divine, “seducing the gods back into reality.”

Disenchantment of the modern world.



The human soul. Longing for something more in a mechanized age.

Re-enchanting the world.




The ancients had an essentially scientific understanding of what

love could be, but rejected it for something more holistic. 

How boundaries and love interrelate.



John asked Michael if the English language is limited by having one word for “love.”

Ancient and modern Greek language.

Relates back to definition of Eros, possible root word indicating “distance.”



The seductive element of the “counter culture,” postmodernism. 

Our own counter to this, the nuances of the “traditional” movement,

limits of “going back.”



The political form (polis) is the fulcrum between microcosm

and macrocosm, links the realms. 

This is severed in a secular, “world citizen” style empire,

de-contextualized of identity and political life. 

Language as the key to control and the key to freedom.




Guest Links:


Twitter for his podcast, “On Tyranny”



Please see the growing collection of Learning in Public episodes and clips here.

~John’s Website~

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