Compassion expressed or withheld – Plato and Luke
The question of the relation between compassion and property and the emotional-psychological-spiritual results of expressing or withholding compassion came to the fore several Sundays ago after hearing a reading from The Book of the Acts of the Apostles.
“Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common” [Acts 4:32].
The whole group, i.e. the early disciples of Jesus, were putting into practice the political philosophy Plato recommended centuries before to legislators in the Greek republic:
“The form of law which I propose would be as follows: In a state which is desirous of being saved from the greatest of all plagues—not faction, but rather distraction—there should exist among the citizens neither extreme poverty nor, again, excessive wealth, for both are productive of great evil . . . Now…
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