In Plato, Gorgias, Callicles makes the claim that, “it’s fine for a person to dabble in philosophy when he’s the right age for it, but it ruins him if he devotes too much of his life to it.” Originally, I found this passage confusing and I had to analyze this statement in a more inclusive way. However, after I reflected on this text, I realized what Callicles was claiming to Socrates.
In this passage, Callicles directly claims that if a human being wants to discuss different topics regarding philosophy and he’s the right age for it, it is considered to be acceptable. However, if he devotes most of his time in his life talking about topics regarding philosophy, it will simply ruin him. For instance, if someone wants to major or minor in philosophy, or be a philosophy teacher or professor, it will ruin him due to philosophy taking up a majority part of his life.
This passage caught my attention because it incorporated Callicles opinion concerning a person devoting all of their time on philosophy and ruining his life, rather than someone casually talking about philosophy, and the outcome of that being fine. “It’s fine for a person to dabble in philosophy when he’s the right age for it, but it ruins him if he devotes too much of his life to it.”