How Did Plato Learn About Atlantis?

Plato describes in detail how he first learned about Atlantis from a variety of friends and relatives. For the rest of his life, fascinated by the subject, he continued to search for more information. He was able to consult with learned individuals, including students of Pythagoras (582-500 B.C.) who were acquainted with the historical lore when the western world’s extensive libraries, such as Alexandria, were destroyed.

Proclus, 5th century A.D., writes that Plato went to Egypt where he talked with a variety of priests about Atlantis. He sold edible oils (olive oil?) to the Egyptians to pay for the journey. Crantor, a student of Plato’s went to Egypt and visited the temple of Neith where priests showed him a pillar covered with writings about the history of Atlantis. The translation of the column agreed completely with Plato’s story.  (for details and sources see Plato’s biography in “Atlantis: Insights From a Lost Civilization.”)

Plato, who was born in about 429 B.C., refrained from writing his two dialogues about Atlantis until just before he died in 347 B.C. It appears that, as he neared the end of his life, he finally wrote about Atlantis in an effort to ensure that the history of the lost civilization would be preserved, even though it endangered his life to do so.

Plato undoubtedly received some of his information from priests in southern Italy who were members of secret brotherhoods who swore him to secrecy. In the past, these mystery schools keep wisdom from those who were not initiated into their society, for it helped to ensure the safety of their intellectual treasures during perilous times when marauders were
pillaging the land. It also offered them esteem and a means of
controlling the general public. In some situations, the punishment for disclosing sacred hidden knowledge was death. Since the time of Plato, secret societies have continued to appeal to the human race. Their ceremonies are usually not open to the public, but knowledge about the organizations is generally available.

Thank you for visiting my blog. For more information on Atlantis and what this lost civilization was like, please consider reading my book, Atlantis: Insights From A Lost Civilization. Thanks again and be sure to leave a comment below on your thoughts.

Atlantis, Plato, Pythagoras, Proclus, Brotherhoods.

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