And in this instance, you who are the father of letters, from a paternal love of your own children have been led to attribute to them a quality which they cannot have; for this discovery of yours will create forgetfulness in the learners’ souls, because they will not use their memories; they will trust to the external written characters and not remember of themselves. The specific which you have discovered is an aid not to memory, but to reminiscence, and you give your disciples not truth, but only the semblance of truth; they will be hearers of many things and will have learned nothing; they will appear to be omniscient and will generally know nothing; they will be tiresome company, having the show of wisdom without the reality.
ce of truth” is as was man after the appearance of truth in the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Man now has worse than before, far worse, cut off from God whose power and knowledge he thought he could grasp.
But then of course there was the original proto-evangelium, the first gospel or message of salvation, when God promised to make all right. This gave more than knowledge but a sort-of un-recognized divine wisdom as it is true knowledge imparted by God according to His wish/will. Although it was not understood in the moment, salvation was to come not by men grabbing but by humble submission of man to God, of Him reaching down to man. This is Christ, Mary, and Christmas, man not trying to become what he is not, but accepting what he is, the opposition of the Fall.