Bringing Europe Home

Quotes from the Masters: Plato

With the onset of the Games of the 2012 Olympics, I’m sending an appreciative nod across the centuries to ancient Greece.  I’m also nodding quite fervently at the multitude of athletes who, through the ages, have continued to astound us in their ability to go ever “Faster, Higher, Stronger,” still.


View of the Caryatid Porch of the Erechtheion, on the Acropolis in Athens, Greece.

I admit that while I’ve been fervently nodding, I’ve also been fervently perusing possible quotes relevant to The Games.  I have finally decided on an improbable one, but it is attributed to Plato (I wanted a Greek).

“Never discourage anyone who continually makes progress, no matter how slow.”  Plato

These Olympic athletes have shown us very vividly that with slow, deliberate, determined effort, the ability of the human body can be pushed to the limit…and yet progress beyond that.  I watch in extreme admiration of this assembled group of athletes and in admiration, as well, of all those who came so close in the trials—of those who even qualified for the trials—of those who even attempted to qualify–and I say, “Go, Human Race, GO!”

“Quotes from the Masters” is a category of posts that I (usually) publish each Saturday.  Because of my proximity to Augusta, Georgia, I must add the disclaimer that it’s not about golf.  What it IS about is gleaning the best quotes I can find from European masters of literature, philosophy, theology, music, and the visual, performing, and culinary arts.

I’m offering this category as a blogging challenge.  Feel free to use the quote as an inspiration for your own post this week and interpret it as you like, using a photograph, a story, a reflection, a poem, a flower, a song, a recipe, a cup of tea –whatever! Please title this one, “Quotes from the Masters: Plato” and please add the link to this page on your post.  I’d be delighted to see a link to your post on the comments section of this page, too.


  1. cristinasandru

    I have nominated you for the “One Lovely Blog Award”. Congratulations!

  2. These are wonderfully inspiring quotes from Plato! My favourite being: “Never discourage anyone who continually makes progress, no matter how slow.” I think this has been the journey I’ve been taking blogging. It’s not easy but as long as I’ve been making progress (and I have) it’s worth continuing.

    • Thanks so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment, Samuel. I’m so glad you like the quotes. I completely agree with you re the blogging journey–and good for you for making progress! I finally decided that the time and effort I’ve been spending blogging has impaired the (already very slow) progress I was making in other writing endeavors, so I’m taking a break from the blogosphere. But I hope to return soon. In the meantime—I wish the best to you and your blog!

  3. Whew! I finally finished the newest challenge in Quotes from the Masters:Plato. This one was a little more difficult to connect. It is posted here Thanks for the great quotes, Robin. I can’t wait until the next one. 🙂 Jamie

    • That’s okay, Jamie, because I gave y’all an extra week for this one, anyway. You came up with a great post. Thank you!

  4. Wonderful quote Robin. You will not believe the number of talented athletes, from here at least, that don’t make it to the Olympics because of politics and corruption! Sorry I missed this. Perhaps later, when i have surfaced from catching up with my blog reading 🙂

    • That’s such a shame, about your athletes. Glad you like the quote. (And don’t worry, Madhu, you’ve got another week to work on Plato, if you’re interested. 😉 )

  5. I know I’m very late in saying this, and I’m sure all those replies I just scrolled through said something along the same lines, BUT I would like to add that I think you picked the PERFECT quote for the theme! Furthermore, I’m glad I just looked back at it because as I’m trying to learn a frustratingly new language, it was the perfect pick-me-up. 🙂 Thank you!

    • Oh, thank you Connie! I’m so glad to know that this was the perfect pick-me-up for you. Good luck with your new language; I am sure that you are making slow, steady progress, so use that to encourage yourself!

  6. Amy

    Here is my entry:
    Great post and pics you did. Thank you, Robin!

  7. I can certainly see how Plato was one of the grandfathers of philosophy. No more so, than the knowledge of slow, yet steady progress. Great quote and thank you for sharing 🙂

  8. You know I am in the challenge, Robin. I will post soon. Perfect choice of quote! connecting Plato with the Olympics was perfect. Thanks for offering this challenge. Enjoy the Evening.

  9. TBM

    Love the quote…now what should I post.

  10. elisaruland

    I’ll bet the queen was having a better time than some people think!
    I love your quote and the Olympic thought behind it…

    • I certainly hope that the queen was having a rollicking good time, ’cause she sure is getting a lot of flak! And thank you, Elisa, I’m glad you like the quote and the sentiments.

      • elisaruland

        It reminds me of a comment my daughter made to me after her sports banquet last May. It was loooong, but I was certain I was sitting at the table with a pleasant smile on my face, laughing at the right moments during speeches. When we got in the car she told me that every time she looked over at me I had a grimace on my face! I was stunned that I had given that impression….poor queen probably feels the same way!!

  11. Funny how your post has turned into a commentary on QE2. She looked miserable at the opening ceremony. I felt bad for you. But . . . the next day I saw her at an event (equestrian?) decked out in blue and she looked lovely. Her skin is amazingly peaches and cream at her age.

    • Yeah, I braced myself when I saw that first QE2 comment. Who knew a simple post meant to laud centuries of athletic prowess would spawn such controversy?!

  12. What a marvellous quote Robin, I am constantly amazed by what you come up with. I’m with you all the way re: Olympic athletes – their stamina, determination and will to succeed leave me gawping in awe and feeling inspired. I feel I have to stand up for the Queen. She’s 86! I don’t know how she does it, enduring long events that I would find exhausting, and I’m less than half her age. When I see what she does I often think of my dad, who’s 83, and although he’s very fit and healthy he would hate to have to attend big events like that and to be surrounded by all that noise, commotion and fanfare. It’s one thing watching it on TV in the comfort of your own home, but quite another being there in person and the centre of attention. Good for her, not feeling she has to smile for the cameras constantly. I say, give the lady a break, and respect her age! Rant over, now I’m going to think about your challenge. 🙂

  13. I agree with your sentiments relating to all the olympic athletes – I feel for those that miss by the slimmest of margins, but they are all worthy of admiration. As for the quote … good quote, but I don’t know how to translate this one … giving it thought …

    • I knew there were others out there that feel the same way about all of the Olympic hopefuls. They are still among the best athletes in the world, after all!
      As for the quote…I’m sure you’ll come up with a dandy, Lynne. 😉

      • I hope your confidence in me is not misplaced 😉

        • Of course it’s not, Lynne! I’ve seen what you paint and photograph and write…you could do this challenge in your sleep.

          • Oh gosh golly Robin, let’s wait and see – i’ve been going to bed with it, to see what percolates to the surface.

            • See? You perked right up with a great post! Thanks for participating, Lynne!

  14. Amy

    This is such a timely post using Plato quote! Thank you, Robin!

  15. petit4chocolatier

    I genuinely enjoy your blog! Wonderful quote by Plato and thank you for the link to An Olympic Philosophy of Life (Psychology Today).

    • Thanks so much!
      And, that article seemed worthy of a link.

  16. This is such a cool post 😀
    Saw the ceremony yesterday and now am feeling pumped with plato running through the head 😉

    Choc Chip Uru

  17. I saw that puss on the Queen’s face yesterday too. But frankly, it didn’t look so different from the puss she had during her Jubilee, or at any other time, really.

    Love this photo. The one time I’ve been to Greece was during one of their hottest summers, and I still have flashbacks to how hot and exhausted I was after climbing to the top of the Acropolis. Those ancient Greeks must have had some serious cardiovascular fitness.

    • Funny–we were in Greece during one of their coldest springs. All my kids wanted to do was swim, but it was freezing!
      And yes, judging from the silhouettes painted all over those Greecian urns, the ancient Greeks were in pretty good form.

  18. Excellent quote inspiring reflection at this great moment with the start of the Olympics. Thanks for sharing it with us.

  19. One day I will actually get round to posting something relevant to your quotes, I am now three behind 😦

  20. Interesting post.


  21. Betsy

    Have you seen the picture of Queen Elizabeth that’s making the rounds on Facebook? She has the most awful, dour frown in a photograph from last night, and the caption says, “Look at all these countries I used to own.” The photo is so hilarious, and the caption is so true…India, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the USA, the list just goes on and on.

    • No, I didn’t see those photos or captions, Betsy, but I did see the look on her face. In fact, those watching with me commented on it. And, we all agreed that the four or five hour-long ceremony must have taken a toll on her and she just wanted to go home!

    • Er bit unfair that. 1) I don’t think QE2 considers she owns any countries but does support the Commonwealth and 2) the USA was long gone before she ascended the throne.

  22. I love your quote Robin! It reminded me of the story The Tortoise and the Hare – lovely GREEK fable with a moral to it. 😀

    • Thanks, Cathy. I was looking for a Creative Commons photo of a snail…maybe I could have looked for a tortoise and hare. Good call!


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