Socrates and the Apology
Socrates and Death in the Apology
In The Apology, Socrates contrasts his ability to address the crowd against more skillful speakers stating that he offers truth over eloquence (17b). In essence, he infers that others use the power of persuasion and slick words to sway others vs. The truth. He postulates that there are others who will always present a skewed depiction of the facts in order to win favor. We see this played out in modern arenas where public discourse relies on competing factions presenting two sides of an issue.
At this time in America, the public is flooded with messaging regarding the Presidential race (i.e., political debates, advertising campaigns and political speeches). Presidential candidates are each presenting "facts" that support their criticism of their opponent's character, views, plans for the country and stance on issues that impact the daily lives of military personnel and…… [Read More]
Both comedy and tragedy are "related to emotional needs and religious longings that became crystallized and structured in ritualistic celebrations and festivals," (34). Both can be framed as "catalysts" that force "some sort of conversion" in the individual (34). Moreover, both comedy and tragedy reflect the "eternal spectacle of human nature and its weaknesses," (35). Both art forms use imitation or mimicry of a political figure or idea.
However, there are distinctions between comedy and tragedy. ith regards to imitation of a public figure, the tragedy aims to showcase the fallibility of heroes; comedies make fun of common foibles. As Navia points out, comedy likely evolved out of the Bacchanalia, in rural regions. Comedies were judged based on audience reactions: the louder and longer the laughter, the greater the price (35). In comedies, performances were lewd; tragedies were not.
The title of the play comes from the chorus, which…… [Read More]
Socrates and Virtue
Comparing and Contrasting Virtue in Taoism and Socrates' Philosophy
The idea of virtue in Taoism may be compared and contrasted to the idea of virtue in the teachings of Socrates. For Socrates, virtue is related to the pursuit of wisdom through philosophy, and is ordered to that which is true and good. Taoism similarly calls upon the practitioner to devote himself to the Way, which is the order that life should take, and through which a life of virtue, or harmony, can be lived. If today virtue is understood as a "good habit," both Taoism and Socratic philosophy may be said to be Ways by which virtue may be achieved. Where the two schools of thought contrast, however, is in their expression of the Way. This paper will compare and contrast Taoism with Socratic philosophy on the subject of virtue and show how the two schools of…… [Read More]
Socrates is one of the most renowned philosophers of all times. His dialectic method is used in a number of ways and has vital importance in literature and deliberation. In the contemporary era, Socratic or Dialectic Method is the term that is used to point out a conversation between two or more people who might have opposing views about an issue but they come to a conclusion after trying to understand the opinion of the other party. However, the dialectic method of Socrates "consisted in examining statements by pursuing their implications, on the assumption that if a statement were true it could not lead to false consequences" ("Socrates from The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed."). Thus, Socratic deliberating dialectic method can be considered important as it is discursive and informal and is a reflection of the autonomous conviction that truth billows out of debate.
The Apology by Plato holds imperative significance…… [Read More]
As a result, Plato is demonstrating social disobedience, by highlighting how anyone who questions authority will face a similar fate as Socrates. (Plato, 2007)
In Crito, Socrates has been found guilty of his crimes and is awaiting his death sentence in an Athenian prison cell. On an early morning, his friend Crito pays him a visit and offers to help him escape. He feels that if Socrates is able to go into exile, he can question the actions against him and offer a service to young adults though his guidance. (Plato, 2007)
However, Socrates refuses to accept Crito's offer. This is because he claims that he is a citizen of Athens and must follow their laws. The only way that he can stay in compliance with these moral obligations is to accept his fate. Evidence of this can be seen with Plato writing, "If we think that we're acting unjustly…… [Read More]
Socrates and Plato
Greek philosophy held a preeminent place in the middle ages among scholastics like Thomas Aquinas, whose Summa Theologica was an attempt to reconcile faith and reason. The faith aspect was supplied by the Church, but the reason came from classical (pagan) ecclesiology -- notably from Greek philosophers like Plato and Aristotle. The latter was the pupil of the former, and the former was the pupil of the first great Greek philosopher, Socrates. Socrates, like Christ, left behind no written work of his own. In fact, all of his words come down to us now, as recorded by Plato, who carried on and elaborated upon the teachings of Socrates. This paper will give an overview of the life and teachings of both Socrates and Plato.
Socrates: Life and Teaching
Socrates (469 BC) was an Athenian by birth. His father was a sculptor, from whom Socrates, as a boy,…… [Read More]
Then, my good friend, take my advice, and refute no more." In short, you must learn to take care of yourself and deal with current circumstances -- refusing to participate in 'the system' will only cause you harm, and by extension, harm to those you care about. If politicians did not learn to deal with the real world on a practical level, nothing would get accomplished, including social justice. That is why people think little of individuals who do not work at anything practical, and merely philosophize -- often living off of the good will of others.
Callicles positions himself as a great orator, but Socrates states that the humbleness of philosophy and its necessity is what makes it great -- in other words, Callicles' advocacy of the political life does not involve real, material work, but only empty hot air. Knowing how to philosophize is as necessary as knowing…… [Read More]
Before we begin our discussion on Socrates' decision and take a position on this issue, we must bear in mind that philosophy doesn't offer any clear-cut answers to perplexing questions or situations. For this reason, we need to closely study various writings and philosophies and strive to interpret them in our way.
The reason Socrates' decision is still embroiled in controversy is because many fail to see consistency between what he preached and how he behaved in the end. Critics maintain that if Socrates always believed in doing the right thing, how could he possibly obey a wrong order? Fair enough. In an attempt to unearth the reasons on which Socrates must have based his decision, some critics frustratingly declared that Socrates was a "law unto himself" -- Colaiaco, 223 and thus his decision need not be questioned.
However this approach is flawed and raises even more misunderstandings…… [Read More]
Socrates Argument Against Charges
The Apology: The horse-breaker analogy
The trial of Socrates came about because he was the teacher of several radical aristocrats who attempted to overthrow Athenian democracy and replace it with an oligarchy. Socrates had taught many of these men philosophy, and he advocated a philosophical kingdom ruled by elite philosophers as the ideal form of government. Socrates believed that just as the people most suited to make shoes should be cobblers, only the most intelligent and intellectually 'fit' should be allowed to rule (Stone 1979). hen Athens was threatened, Socrates was prosecuted (Stone 1979). Socrates' analogy of the horse-tamer is in response to Meletus' claim that everyone else is a positive influence upon the youth of Athens -- except Socrates. Socrates points out specialized individuals are required to tame a horse, rather than ordinary individuals. This suggests that only educators can have an influence upon young,…… [Read More]
Buddhism and Confucianism can be regarded largely as religious systems -- although Confucianism is a remarkably secular set of beliefs, it nonetheless regards ritual activities -- but Socrates is not prized as a religious figure as Confucius and the Buddha are (although in the guise of neo-Platonism would have an influence on certain Christian traditions many centuries after Socrates drank the hemlock). So what does Socrates bring to the table that Confucius and the Buddha do not, that he still captures our attention? Soccio needs to invoke Karl Jaspers' concept of the "paradigmatic individual" as to why Socrates lingers on as the archetypal "Wise Man" of Western Civilization (Soccio 92).
Yet we also need to begin with a curious paradox -- one that Socrates clearly relished -- which was that Socrates himself professed to offer nothing: his philosophical stance began with a profession of his utter ignorance. Soccio chooses…… [Read More]
As Navia puts it, "there are not many things that are known about Socrates with certainty," (15). Historians do know the philosophers years of birth and death (469 BCE and 399 BCE, respectively), and the fact that he was poisoned by an Athenian jury much as Plato described the matter in his Apology. As with Jesus, Socrates life is pieced together by the writings of other people, many of whom did not actually know the philosopher or even live during the same era. Beck claims that the lack of reliable historiography related to the life of Socrates is known as the "Socratic Problem." Navia states that the Socratic Problem also entails the fact that anything that is known about Socrates from one source is readily contradicted by another. The Socratic Problem can never be solved, because there are no definitive sources. Socrates did not leave behind an autobiography, and…… [Read More]
He shows this to be as absurd as things such as believing in flute-playing without believing in the players that make the music. The point that Socrates makes is that, in the same way, no person can believe in spiritual and divine agencies without also believing in spirits or demigods.
In this way, the accuser, Meletus, contradicts himself by saying that Socrates teaches and believes in divine agencies without in fact believing in the gods themselves. Socrates shows the illogical nature of this accusation by making the point that one cannot believe in a divine manifestation without also believing in the god behind it. Indeed, it would be as absurd as believing that mules exist without believing in the horses and donkeys that created them. Socrates here correctly accuses Meletus that he in fact has nothing to accuse the philosopher of, and proves himself to be a believer in the…… [Read More]
And the irony is that he was sentenced to death because he questioned the laws and the gods trying to save Athens from a process of decay which had already started before the defeat in the conflict with Sparta.
As far as the theme of knowledge and wisdom is concerned, Socrates believed that he was an ignorant. What made him valuable was his capacity to realize how limited his knowledge was. Knowing you know so little is the fundament for self development since it triggers a process of search and hard work in this direction. While man had always wanted to understand the universe, Socrates suggested that the truth is best to be found in knowledge of oneself. Wisdom is supported by an attitude of modesty and moderation.
Under these circumstances we may bring into discussion the Socratic method. While trying to teach to his pupils, what the philosopher did…… [Read More]
This is the nature of the philosopher; a person who seeks knowledge and truth; the "good," with his whole being. This search sets him apart from the rest of humanity, and also enables him to lead them where necessary. ocrates emphasizes that it is often dangerous to try and force people to emerge from the cave, as a sudden emergence could have the above-mentioned effect of turning these people away from the sun forever.
The divided line image from Book VI of the Republic is a rather complicated preliminary image to the Allegory of the Cave in the following Book. Here ocrates explains the division between the physical and intellectual worlds by means of a line that is divided into two. One of the lines is below the other and represents the physical, or visible world. The other line, above the first, represents the mental, or the intellectual world. This…… [Read More]
Trial of Socrates
Socrates thought he was being tried because he was making the Athenian leaders uncomfortable by asking them to know themselves and seek the truth instead of always being pleased with themselves. He asserted that they were more interested in pursuing their own will than God’s will and this is what upset them—they did not like being accused by a philosopher. They, for their part, said they were putting Socrates on trial for corrupting the youth—so basically they were projecting onto him what they themselves were doing, and he knew it.
Though Socrates knew what the Athenian jury was up to he showed his respect for them nonetheless by accepting the verdict—even though he still railed against them. He said that he would rather “obey God than men” because he understood that God’s will was more important than the wills of men. God’s will is pure and good…… [Read More]
As someone might say today, the lack of knowledge as a result of not willing to search for it is no excuse. How can anyone be sure to do right since the truth remains hidden? Socrates thinking was aimed at making his fellow humans who were willing to listen to him aware of the dangers of doing wrong by not being willing to question the truth or what it was known as the truth.
ne cannot help and wonder what would have happened if Socrates had accepted the jury's forgiveness in exchange for giving up his beliefs. Certainly, a life long work would have went to pieces and be destroyed. His credibility in front of his contemporary disciples, like Plato and all those who followed them would have been for ever shattered. Even if they understood his fear in front of what appears to be the most frightful opponent of…… [Read More]
Socrates as Not an Enemy to the State
as Socrates an enemy of the state? There are two appropriate answers -- "yes" and "no." But first a definition of "enemy" is needed. In Mark Twain's short story "The Mysterious Stranger," Satan explains why there will always be war. It is because "a loud little handful" at first instigates it then, "…the great, big, dull bulk of the nation will rub its sleepy eyes and try to make out why there should be a war… [and later] statesmen… [will] blame…the nation that is attacked" -- in other words, as long as the "enemy" is identified, there will always be war. Therefore, an "enemy" is not just someone to distrust or despise, or someone who threatens the peace and safety of a community, but someone to blame. In the case of Socrates and his trial, the court apparently found Socrates to be…… [Read More]
Socrates argues that the accusation is absurd, as the accusation implies that he is solely responsible for the state of the youth. Socrates uses the allegory of a horse trainer to explain that he is a trainer, rather than corruptor, of the youth (Cavalier, "Ancient Philosophy").
Socrates' second argument in his defense is that, had harmed the youth, the philosophy that evil begets evil would dictate that the youth would harm him in turn. Being a believer in this philosophy, Socrates would be harming himself knowingly by harming the youth.
egarding the charge of impiety, Socrates argues that he is in fact a guardian of the piety of the City. He has devoted his life to understanding divinity and in service of the gods. However, being disturbed by hearing the truth from Socrates, those indicted by his very piety accused him of impiety.
All of the accusations against Socrates therefore…… [Read More]
The main themes of Plato's Apology are the great irony of many of Socrates' claims, his use of the Socratic method of teaching, and his surprising strategy of questioning the fundamental validity of his trial itself, rather than putting on a vigorous and elegant defense of his actions as was expected by both his supporters and detractors, and likely by the people of the jury. Plato's Apology is a detailed account of the 399 BC trial of the great philosopher Socrates, in which Socrates was on trial for his life after being accused by Meletus, an ambitious young Athenian, and others of the upper class of being "a doer of evil, and corrupter of the youth, and he does not believe in the gods of the state, and has other new divinities of his own" (Plato, Apology). Ultimately, Socrates' defense led to his death, by his own hand, and…… [Read More]
The fact that he believes in the gods differently than some of his neighbors seems to cause them to view his teachings as atheism. In the "Apology," Socrates says: "Some one will say: And are you not ashamed, Socrates, of a course of life which is likely to bring you to an untimely end? To him I may fairly answer: There you are mistaken: a man who is good for anything ought not to calculate the chance of living or dying; he ought only to consider whether in doing anything he is doing right or wrong, acting the part of a good man or of a bad." This sense of pursuing goodness does not mean that Socrates believes he will necessarily have a better place in the afterlife. However, Socrates believes that to act morally is its own reward, not something that will win him favor in the eyes of…… [Read More]
Furthermore, many laypeople can have great stores of knowledge, and may have learned to train horses better than professionals -- and to be better teachers and philosophers, from personal experience. In fact, given that philosophy is the study of life, one could argue that ordinary people are the best teachers of the discipline. This is one of the principles of the democratic Athenian system, that everyday people can govern and teach themselves. Socrates, an advocate of philosophers 'leading' others through teaching and through government leadership in a philosopher-kingdom, stands opposed to such ideals and ideas in his teachings.
Socrates has a strong point, however, when he notes that Meletos has not lived up to Athenian democratic ideals. Rather than trying to teach Socrates the right way of thinking, and engaging in a dialogue with Socrates, Meletos brings a case against Socrates in the law-courts -- simply because he disagrees with…… [Read More]
In Plato's Crito, Socrates engages the title character in a dialogue about the nature of law, justice, and ethics. Crito wants to break Socrates out from prison, making various arguments in favor of the escape. For one, Crito tells Socrates that it is not ethical to abandon his children if he can help it. Second, Crito repeatedly refers to his own honor and ego, not wanting to be viewed as having failed his friend. Third, Crito claims that Socrates is popular abroad and that his escape would make others happy. Crito's argument is classically utilitarian in nature. The problem is, Socrates is not a utilitarian. Socrates' position is that justice is unequivocal. He has accepted his fate, and did the moment of the trial. Socrates categorically refuses to escape from prison, because doing so would represent an unjust act. Therefore, Socrates firmly believes that a citizen of the state…… [Read More]
His humility, focus on love and virtue, and selfless devotion in the face of persecution make him an example of "practicing what you preach" (Woods). He "embraced poverty" and refused to accept money for his "teachings" (Nails). Moreover, Socrates could be considered more "innocent and wide-eyed" than Jesus because he refused to believe that anyone had evil intentions, only that evil actions sprung from ignorance. He also believed that people were born virtuous, and therefore did not worry so much about the upbringing of his own sons.
Socrates had various other unusual beliefs that set him apart, and that he stuck by in deed as well as word. For example, he believed in the superiority of oral communication for accurately conveying information; as a result, he never authored any writings, leaving it to Plato and others to attest to the history of his philosophy. In addition, he was highly eccentric…… [Read More]
His view is Asian in that it mirrors the view that meaning is found by searching within, that imposing a specific doctrine is not the way to find enlightenment, and that a teacher is a guide rather than a figure of authority. Such ideas are expressed in Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Confucianism, and other Asian philosophical and religious systems. Socrates takes a very self-effacing position in keeping with the way he subordinates himself to the need of society and so does not challenge the death sentence pronounced against him, nor does he escape when he can because he believes more in the right of the social order to exert its authority over him than he does in his personal welfare. The sublimation of the personal in service of the greater good is also an Asian element that Socrates expresses in his own way, and the way his followers argue with him…… [Read More]
Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle are the most famous of the ancient Greek philosophers. All three of them have left a deep impact on the Western philosophy. In this paper we will look at the main points of their philosophies and the impact they left on us.
Socrates (469-399 BC)
Socrates was the first of the famous trio. He did not write any books and most of what we know about Socrates has been derived from the works of his equally illustrious pupil, Plato. Socrates not having written any book is part of his philosophy as he believed in the superiority of argument over writing and spent most of his life in public places practicing dialogue and argument with his contemporaries.
Socrates' basic philosophy was ethical in nature. He believed in an objective understanding of justice, love, and virtue. He particularly emphasized 'self-knowledge' and believed in the essential goodness of men.…… [Read More]
This is really the extent of Gorgias attempting to remove himself from Socrates' argument, but instead, pulls him deeper into the intellectual trap, for Gorgias has only one misgiving about the entire situation . . . he fears that the crowd of onlookers might be disinterested in two men trying to outdo each other in being wrong (458b-c). Thus, Gorgias proves two things: he cannot intellectually handle a multi-layered discussion and he needs an audience in order to perform -- the basics of dialog and intellectual discourse are lost upon him. If then, Gorgias needs an audience, Socrates must be correct in that rhetoric is a craft -- designed not for serious intellectual combat, but for pure entertainment value.
2.Explain and critically evaluate Socrates reasoning for the apparently preposterous claim that tyrants like orators have no great power (Gorgias 466a-468e). You should make sure that you take into account Socrates…… [Read More]
For instance Plato believed that rulers should only rule based on truth and reason and that the way to best live life itself was also based on truth and reason. This is something I agree with very strongly. When it comes to the Iraq war, for example, I feel that America's current leaders decided to start the war based not on truthfulness and reason, but for baser motives, such as coercion and a desire to expand their geographical and financial power. I strongly disagree with the war and neither Socrates nor Plato would have felt the war was justified, based on their ideas of truth, reason, and (for Plato) virtue. Plato believed that truth and reason led to virtue, and that therefore people who lived good lives were truthful, reasonable and virtuous. Like Plato, I agree that living a good life must be based on a foundation of truthfulness, about…… [Read More]
Instead, he challenges the reliability of the person who claims knowledge, by asking him for a definition that would hold for all circumstances. The point is not to ascertain whether he is right in this case, but to see whether his claim could hold for every case. This is close to the skeptical issue, but deceptively so."(Benson, 87) in the Socratic view therefore, knowledge is perceived as the greatest possible virtue of the soul. Thus, it is through knowledge that a person may distinguish between right and wrong and thus act virtuously. The process of attaining knowledge is nevertheless an arduous one, not being easily available to its seekers. The role of philosophy is thus central to the proper functioning of the human society since it is comparable to the practice midwifery in that it helps to deliver man from perplexity and allow truth to be born in the mind.…… [Read More]
Socrates and the Apology
One of the main charges against Socrates revolved around the fact that he was a natural philosopher. This was so problematic as it was in opposition with the views set forth by this early society: these views believed that the society was created via the gods and a great many narratives were developed around the idea of the gods, and what they were capable of and how they impacted the natural world and how it was viewed. Philosophy, particularly Socrates' variety of natural philosophy, was viewed as being in direct opposition to these traditional viewpoints. Another charge against Socrates was one which aligned him with the Sophists. The sophists were a group of public speakers who had uncovered certain methods of persuading others that permitted them to adopt a particular viewpoint even if that viewpoint was not the best or truest one. These individuals travelled, often…… [Read More]
Socrates believed that defining which of the actions taken by man are good, and which are not, provides man with the definition of piety and impiety. Aristotle also felt that "every action and choice, seem to aim at some good; the good, therefore, has been well defined as that at which all things aim."(Aristotle, 1094a)
Socrates also presents a defense for his actions by asking Euthyphro whether the holy acts that man complete make the gods any better. Euthyphro immediately states no, no, that's not what I mean.
By presenting this defense, Socrates seems to be saying that he is not attempting to blaspheme god, or the gods in any way, instead he is learning what it takes to make himself a better man.
In the end Socrates demonstrates that not even the theologian can provide with certainty what defines piety or impiety. He thereby provides himself a defense against…… [Read More]
Socrates' speech in Plato's Apology. It is this author's opinion that Socrates' position that the unexamined life is not worth living has validity. We will see that this is the case as we examine Socrates' spontaneous oration regarding virtue and how it can not be learned. Obviously, if the lives of these youths had been virtuous, then it might have been possible for them to learn this character trait and to prove Socrates wrong. This is the case because only when someone examines their life do they shake off their bigotry and raise their awareness to a higher level.
As alluded to in the introduction, Socrates is correct that the unexamined life is not worth living. This is because only those people who struggle to resolve the contradictions in their life have an existence that is real. Those who do not are at best ignorant and at worst bigots who…… [Read More]
Socrates' Phaedo with special focus on his conception of life and death. It uses the Phaedo as a source.
True knowledge is something that individuals would like to achieve. This is because in true knowledge lies the solutions to problems in life that each one faces. Accepting that human life is full of flaws, one can see that having true knowledge means that these flaws can be removed. However, it must also be realized that human beings face large obstacles that prevents them from reaching this truth. This is because the human body and soul are said to co-exist for as much time as the body manages to stay alive; being mortal, one's life has to end, at one time or another. During the co-existence of the body and soul, it is the soul that is deprived of achieving true knowledge and the truth because it is the body that…… [Read More]
Socrates and Thoreau are similar through the fact that both of them lobbied for a just world where slavery would not be present concomitantly with taking advantage of the institution of slavery. Socrates would thus identify with Thoreau, given that each of these two men lived in a time when their opinions were worthless when compared to those of the masses. Thoreau and Socrates were well aware that violence would be pointless in times when slavery was still considered to be normal by the majority. Socrates would however feel that Thoreau's perspective in regard to Brown's decision to use violence as a means to achieve justice is erroneous. This is because Socrates lived in a period when slavery was highly esteemed and when it was virtually impossible for someone to rise against the state with the purpose of abolishing it. In contrast, Thoreau, his abolitionist contemporaries, and society in general…… [Read More]
In an attempt to emphasize the extent to which finance manages ignore ethical consideration is by adhering to the following misconceptions in financial decision-making according to the author:
Ethical considerations are idiosyncratic personal views and have no place in business decision-making.
Ethical considerations are only relevant if they create risks.
Sustainability of long-term investment is safeguarded by existing financial metrics.
The most important influencing variables are, according to the author, not always those set forth by watchdog agencies, rather by other influencing factors that are more internal and not usually committed to paper policy or disclosure statements. These internal factoring decision-making regimens are as follows:
The manner in which a financial manager gathers relevant data about a prospective business.
Does the manager rely solely on financial press information or on social and environmental risk information of both?
What financial information does the financial manager request from analysts when assessing a…… [Read More]
Plato's Crito And The Law
Among the celebrated treatises on reason and logic known as the dialogues of Plato, it is the relatively short discourse between and the condemned philosopher Socrates his concerned companion Crito which today stands as the most lasting monument to the ancient Greek tradition of pedagogically examining the realm of ethics. The Crito is an artfully constructed depiction of an intensely logical dialectic between the sober and systematic Socrates, who has refuses to defy his impending death sentence as an extension of his conception of justice and injustice, and a wealthy patron willing to finance an attempt at escape. After allowing his friend Crito to present a series of arguments, which include the provision of financing for the flight to freedom and several provocative moral appeals, Socrates responds by reaffirming his commitment to remaining guided by reason. Socrates' subsequent defense of his own imminent execution is…… [Read More]
How the respective societies responded to the various ideas?
Socrates would have a dramatic impact upon society, as the various ideas he presented would become a part of the moral code that is often cited, as a part of basic sociology. A good example of this can be seen with social contract theory. This simply states that humans are motivated by conscious / unconscious actions and the experiences, they have from different events. The ideas of good and justice can be directly seen with how humans react to various situations they face, either consciously or unconsciously. The underlying positive or negative experiences will shape how someone views the world around them. Those who can associate goodness and justice, to their actions will have the most positive effect, on the individual and within society. Over the centuries, this sense moral goodness has become a part of the moral standards within Western…… [Read More]
Xenophon's Apology For Socrates
WHEN DEATH IS ETTER THAN LIFE
Xenophon's Apology for Socrates
Xenophon explains well the rule or tendency of the jury of his time as regards persons it accuses of vanity or vainglory (Patch, 2006). Socrates was won't to display his wisdom and excellence to the people of his day. He particularly annoyed the jury, which was prone to show compassion and favor to a person who seeks pity and humiliates himself. ut Socrates was the opposite and that was why he incurred the disfavor and envy of the jury (Patch pp 9-10).
Nonetheless, Xenophon did not think that Socrates' sentence of death was untimely, even in Socrates' own eye (Patch, 2006 pp 10-11). y his own words and defense, he said that god pre-arranged him to die early and in the easiest way because of his accomplishments, virtue and wisdom. This, he explained, was why the…… [Read More]
The author of this brief report has been asked to ponder and consider the words and actions of classical authors such as Socrates and Descartes. With Socrates, it could easily be argued that he behaved and carried himself in a Christian way. Even with that, there are clear divergences between Christian philosophy and classical antiquity and those will be explored. Also up for debate are the subjects of doubt and in what ways Descartes pondered this. While there is a lot of classical literature that is devoid of Christian mention, there are some principles and standards put forth that are very reminiscent of, and similar to, the Christian mindset and ideology.
As for three things that are different between classical antiquity and Christian-based theology, one thing that is clear is that the people of those days obviously believed in a number of Gods and, quite often, the Christian…… [Read More]
Phaedrus: The Soul and the ecollection of Virtue
Plato states that "a man must have intelligence of universals, and be able to proceed from the many particulars of sense to one conception of reason; -- this is the recollection of those things which our soul once saw while following God -- when regardless of that which we now call being she raised her head up towards the true being" (417-418). For Socrates, God is everything. He is All. He is Existence, Truth, Beauty, Wisdom, Virtue, Life, eality. God is what Socrates calls "the true being" from which all knowledge and intelligence comes. Souls that have not seen God before do not "pass into the human form" -- for God does not place a "soul which has never seen the truth" into the body of a man (417). Thus, when a man recognizes truth on earth, he is simply recollecting in…… [Read More]
Self-knowledge is a prerequisite for wisdom. For Socrates, self-knowledge or self-understanding is the precursor of the ability to probe the world outside of the self. In fact, Socratic wisdom is wisdom that is manifest and known. The Socratic process of probing and inquiry is designed specifically to eliminate that which cannot be known or that which is irrelevant to the pursuit of wisdom and understanding. The process of Socratic dialogue is coupled with the process of arguing ad absurdum, until the kernel of truth remaining after the inquiry may be recognized as wisdom. Yet before a person can even begin to explore the universe, the person must explore the self. The exploration of self is not a narcissistic inquiry but rather, an inquiry into the nature of human being. It is important to understand the human experience, the human mind, and human patterns of perception and cognition.
Socrates also…… [Read More]
Socrates and Zen
Socrates View of Life to Zenism
The objective of this work, Socrates View of Life to Zenism, will be to see if the sage Socrates agrees or disagrees with the way of the Zen masters. I noticed upon completion of the book, Dan Millman's semi-auto biographical tale, 'Way of the Peaceful Warrior: A Book That Changes Lives,' that I was reminded of something I saw on TV in the cable system's reruns. Although simple, I was reminded of this -- When the student is ready the teacher will come.
That mantra came from a television series about a 'half American' and 'half Chinese' Shoaling monk. The Television series was Kung Fu and although the story was a little out of date, even for a western, the star of the show, Kwi Chang Cain, whenever in trouble or in a situation needing reflection, had an ancient memory jarred…… [Read More]
Socrates and Crito
In this paper, I will show that Socrates’ argument concerning staying to drink the hemlock juice as ordered by the State is a successful argument. First, I will reconstruct the argument, and discuss why it is significant. Then, I will show that the argument is successful, and why. I will then consider possible objections to what I have said, and how I would reply to them. Finally, I will summarize the contents of the paper, showing what has been accomplished by my analysis.
Socrates begins his argument from generalized principles that are accepted as true and then moves to a specific conclusion, and thus his argument is deductive in nature. Crito’s argument, on the other hand, is inductive in that he moves from a specific observation to a generalized principle. Crito views Socrates’ sentence as unjust since Socrates is not guilty of corrupting the youth. Socrates views…… [Read More]
Socrates is actually right in the last clause, because neither the ideas nor the souls existed before birth, partially because birth is an arbitrary limit.
The use of birth as a delineation is entirely arbitrary and is rooted in the same kind of inaccurate conception of identity and consciousness that underpins Socrates' entire worldview. The prenatal knowledge Socrates imagines he has observed exists before birth in that it is encoded into a human's DNA well before any given baby passes through a birth canal, but there is no evidence for that baby somehow being filled with knowledge or consciousness at a certain point such that one can talk about before birth and after birth as useful time designations. Again, Socrates' argumentative and logical failures are largely born out of scientific ignorance, but this does not lessen the fact that he is not so much making a genuine argument as much…… [Read More]
Euthyphro, Socrates questions Euthyphro about his proposed course of action concerning his father. Explain in detail the reason given by Euthyphro.
"In the Euthyphro, where Socrates and Euthyphro wrestle with the concept of holiness, the substantive part of the conversation begins with the typical Socratic question: 'Tell me then, what do you say that holiness is, and what, unholiness?'" (5c)" (Navia 102). In the dialogue, the self-proclaimed pious Euthyphro is made to stand in for unquestioned religious orthodoxy, an orthodoxy which is interrogated over the course of the dialogue in Euthyphro's guise (Navia 115). The young man Euthyphro states that he is bringing forth a case against his father for the death of a slave. The slave died of exposure after the father bound the man and threw him in a ditch after the slave himself was accused of murder. Euthyphro first defines his action of prosecution as piety itself.…… [Read More]
Euthyphro, Socrates Euthyphro discuss concept piety/Holiness. This essay test ability recognize engag
The principle tenet discussed in the Socratic Dialogue Euthyphro, which centers on a discussion between Euthyphro and the great Greek philosopher, is piety or holiness. This topic emerges in the dialogue because it is of immense importance to the future of both men. They meet on the porch of King Archon, and quickly ascertain that each is there for a legal trial. Socrates discloses the fact that he has been charged with corrupting the youth principally because his accuser believes he is slandering the gods by disavowing their piety or by creating new ones (which is disrespectful to the established ones). Euthyphro is there to bring his father up on charges of murder. Since he professes to be extremely well versed in the conception of piety and holiness, Socrates asks him to discuss this topic (Plato, 380 B.C.E.).…… [Read More]
Euthyphro, Socrates Euthyphro discuss concept piety/Holiness. This essay test ability recognize engag
The concept of holiness is central to the Platonic dialogue that takes place between Euthyphro and Socrates in Euthyphro. This topic is of immense interest to both of the aforementioned participants due to the fact that they are both headed for a legal trial. Socrates has been brought up on trial for charges that he is corrupting the youth; Euthyphro is taking his father to task for the charge of murder. Socrates is particularly concerned with the latter's trial due to the notion of piety which Euthyphro professes guides him in his work in which he will prosecute his father. Part of the accusations against Socrates involve the fact that he is acting like a "poet" (Plato, 380 B.C.E), meaning, of course, that in his teachings to the youth there is an irreverence in which he disavows current…… [Read More]
Freud's Writing by Socrates and Socrates' Writing by Freud
Socrates Commenting on Freud's Civilization and its Discontents
Sigmund Freud presents a very interesting set of principles in his work Civilization and its Discontents. Here, he describes his belief in the true identity of the nature of man. More than anything else, man is aggressive. This aggression is essentially caused out of the tension and conflict between innate primal desires and the demands of social mores. Such aggression is often channeled through the death drive, the primal need to destroy which must be released in one way or another, even in a modern context.
In this view, society then attempts to civilize that aggressiveness so that we can live together without killing each other. It redirects primal and sexual energies into more positively viewed energies and behaviors. In Freud's view, religion serves as an institute of society, and aims to tame…… [Read More]
Such a lifestyle is unrealistic and one that is not plausible for most members of society. Instead, what is necessary is a life where one acquires the social and emotional skills necessary to allow one to recognize what is morally right and then to live one's life in accordance with such recognition. This process does not require a constant introspective vigilance like the one that Socrates proposes. Most men are not philosophers like Socrates and are busy with their day-to-day lives. They do not have the time or inclination to spend their days contemplating their existence. As long as they live a good life, their lives are no less meaningful. In the end, Socrates would likely agree.
The importance of Socrates' statement is that he remained true to his beliefs to the very end. He had spent his life questioning everything including those in authority and, in the process, he…… [Read More]
The basis of Nietzsche's arguments lies in the fact that he disagrees with the view that life is essentially worthless. According to the author, Socrates and other great ancient philosophers all come to the same conclusion after making a number of observations about life and how to live it; that it is worthless. The ultimate result is not only death, but also a wish for death resulting from the fact that there is nothing in life that can truly be said to mean something.
Nietzsche furthermore argues that the modern view is quite different from this: there is a sanctity and purpose to the lives we lead today. Therefore the high regard given to philosophers such as Socrates should be reconsidered. Nietzsche feels that this regard for the ancient philosophers is a symptom of the human herd mentality rather than clear and rational thought. Great philosophers should not be…… [Read More]
He prided himself on being a king that put the needs of his people above his own, struggling to keep his own feelings under wrap and focus instead on what his people needed. This desire to help the people led him to seek a cure for the plague, which was destroying people in masses. He sent Creon to Delphi, Apollo's place of revelation, to find out what could be done to save the city. Creon was told that the state must avenge the death of the former king Laios. After doing a little sould-searching, Oedipus learns that he was the killer of Laios, who was his father.
Oedipus takes full responsibility for the crime. "Citizens and alien alike must never shelter me or speak to me," he said. "I must be shunned by all. And I myself pronounced this malediction upon myself" (Sophocles, 42).
Like Socrates, Oedipus is visited by…… [Read More]
Socrates has been accused of not recognizing the gods of the state, and also of inventing gods of his own. In fact, this is a two-part accusation. Socrates is first being accused for not believing in the state-sanctioned religion. Of course, it is impossible to know what Socrates does or does not believe. Based on his words, though, it would seem Socrates does actually believe in the gods although may not pay them the kind of respect that the Athenian courts would prefer.
The second part of the accusation is different. Here, the state accuses Socrates of inventing new divinities of his own. Socrates is in fact not starting a new religion and he does not tout the divine authority of any deity. If the accusation is taken collectively, that is, if declaration of guilt or innocence is made on the fulfillment of both these two parts, then Socrates…… [Read More]
To wit, in Socrates' day, there were no official government prosecutors (commonly referred to in modern America as "District Attorneys"); in effect, any citizen could bring an indictment against any other citizen, and call for a trial. And that's basically what happened to Socrates.
Here in America, in 2006, notwithstanding what Vice President Cheney said, President George . Bush stated, "I will never question the patriotism of somebody who disagrees with me." Bush was responding to a reporter's question on August 21; Bush was asked if he believed, according to http://mediamatters.org, that the "Democrats advocating for U.S. withdrawal from Iraq 'embolden Al Qaeda types' as...Cheney similarly stated. Bush's answer was, "I will never question the patriotism of somebody who disagrees with me... [although] leaving [Iraq] before the job would be done would be to send a signal to our troops that the sacrifices they made were not worth it...this has…… [Read More]
Plato, The Apology of Socrates
The charges against Socrates, as given in Plato's Apology, are twofold. This is how Socrates himself phrases it:
And now I will try to defend myself against them: these new accusers must also have their affidavit read. What do they say? Something of this sort: - That Socrates is a doer of evil, and corrupter of the youth, and he does not believe in the gods of the state, and has other new divinities of his own. (Plato 2009).
In other words, the first charge is that Socrates has corrupted the youth of Athens, and the second charge is that of impiety towards the official gods of Athens. Socrates in his defense begins by cross-examining his accuser, Meletus. On the first charge he asks whether Meletus thinks his corruption of young minds was intentional: when Meletus says it was, Socrates notes that Meletus has never…… [Read More]
He even goes so far as to say that if in death he can talk with Orpheus, Musaeus, Homer and Hesiod, death will be worth it. He says, "Nay, if this be true, let me die again and again."
One of the most profound statements that Socrates offers to his true "judges" is that nothing bad can happen to a good man, so they should not worry about him. "…no evil can happen to a good man, either in life or after death. He and his are not neglected by the gods."
Socrates claims that it is because he didn't beg or cry for his life that he has been offered the death penalty. He claims that his arguments were sound, but he did not do what the jury wanted him to do. Socrates gives some words of encouragement to the people who follow him, telling them that he did…… [Read More]
In the Apology, Socrates is being placed on trial by three of his rivals for different activities that he is accused of being involved in. The most notable include: corrupting the youth of Athens and not supporting the same religious beliefs as everyone else. During the trial, his enemies are utilizing these charges to demonstrate how he knowingly engaged in these actions. They are demanding that he apologize for the crimes that he committed and begin to conform to the most common practices in contemporary society. (Plato, 2000) ("The Apology," 2012) ("Analysis of the Apology," 2010)
However, Socrates uses this as a forum to ridicule these individuals, question the legitimacy of the trial and to defend himself. This is problematic, as these cavalier attitudes will eventually lead to him being found guilty and sentenced to death. To fully understand what is taking place requires carefully examining his key…… [Read More]
Phaedo, Socrates asserts that the physical senses are a distraction to acquired pure knowledge. What reasons does Socrates give to justify this assertion? Did you find Socrates' argument on this point convincing? Why or why not? Was there anything that you read in the Phaedo that you found especially interesting, or that you did not completely understand?
The best way that we can understand Socrates' reason for seeing the physical senses as distraction is by understanding his underlying philosophy of Forms. To Socrates, every physical and conceptual element was a Form that was merely a mirage of eth Ideal within. The Ideal was contained within the Form, but beyond it, and the physical packaging of the Form occluded it. True happiness and Love can never consist of physical manifestation; it is always alluding to something beyond it - to the true eudemonia which is genuine, authentic bliss which is contained…… [Read More]
Socrates was a proud citizen of Athens. He loved his native state so much that when he was condemned before her courts, he prefered to be sentences to death instead of exile, because to be away from Athens would have been unbearable to him. He had fought bravely in her wars and won great acclaim, and laid his life on the line for her protection. Considering the degree of patriotism with which Socrates was endowed, it is strange and ironic that he was brought up on charges of corrupting the youth and challenging the laws of his state. It may in fact have been Socrates' passion for the egalitarian values of Athens that led to his prosection and death.
As the first democracy, ancient Athens was a society where lawsuits ran rampant. In that day many people seemed to scorn the constant suing, and it was a matter of…… [Read More]
Socrates and the Sophists
Socrates and the Sophists held many of their philosophical beliefs in common, and this was the very beginning of philosophical thought, debate, and education. However, a major difference between Socrates ideas and the ideas of the Sophists was Socrates belief that the Sophists idea of relativism was based in skill but had no real insight into the real questions of the universe that mattered. He felt the Sophists taught the basics of good politics, which of course were of extreme importance in Athens, but they did not teach the basics of life and living. He also believed that the Sophists were very successful at attacking and changing the old "system of beliefs" but they had not created a workable and successful substitute for the people.
Socrates also believed that morals came directly from how the person lived their life through objective standards and rational…… [Read More]
Plato and Socrates -- Human Soul
There are a number of philosophical tenets that have been the subject of intense scrutiny since humans coalesced into formal societies. ho are we as a species? here do we fit in with the universe? hat is morality? Do the ends justify the means? Moreover, most of all, why are we here and are we free to act as individuals toward greater good? Free will, for instance, or the idea of that human's make choices unconstrained, has been contested even as a concept. The paradigm that humans may make rational choices and that life is not predetermined from "divine" beings allows one to look at a number of philosophical constructs that are on a continuum between the idea that determinism is false and that of hard determinism, or the idea that determinism is true and free will completely impossible forms the crux of a…… [Read More]
movie Peaceful Warrior, character "Socrates" ( played Nick Nolte) "There's greater purpose service
Servant Leadership model- leadership style of George Washington
Some people believe that leaders have the ability to lead from the time of birth. This could be true; however, not necessarily the reality on the ground. Additionally, there are different types of leaders depending on their leading requirements and personal attributes. There are dictatorial leaders, directing and commanding leaders, as well as, serving leaders. In description, servant-leadership is leadership, which is a way of being in relationship with others. It seeks to involve and incorporate the followers or employees at all levels in decision-making, strongly adhering to ethical and caring behavior, hence enhances the individual growth of all followers or workers and their performance in the work place. As a young man, President George Washington exhibited admiration of rules and wanted to be a gentle man, this is…… [Read More]