Socrates and Plato
According to the University of Florida, In a broad sense, philosophy is an activity people undertake when they seek to understand fundamental truths about themselves, the world in which they live, and their relationships to the world and to each other. (FSU, Department of Philosophy). It is defined as the love of wisdom.
In simpler words, it is the way that a person may think about the world or universe (spirit, and mind), and what it is made up of to understand the mystery of existence. It is thinking about thinking. The subject of philosophy is so arguable so the term isn’t exactly be defined. There are many philosophers that have many different views and opinions on philosophy.
In the western tradition, prehistoric philosophy and belief was produced and arose from philosophers such as Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Thales, Anaximander, and etc. A great deal of greek philosophers were important, and many things that they have said are still said the same, or in a rephrased state today. For example, Socrates said, The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing. This has been rephrased by my grandmother as the fool in the room always makes the most noise. Many of those believers’ ideas are still accepted today throughout many different countries and religions. Out of all of the philosophers, I believe that the philosophers who have made the most significant differences are Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. Their thoughts and beliefs are similar yet different, and are still accepted in modern society all over. From this course I have learned that you couldn’t really study or learn the world of philosophy without bringing up those three philosophers.
According to the Ancient History Encyclopedia, Socrates was a Greek philosopher and is considered the father of western philosophy. Plato was his most famous student and would teach Aristotle who would then tutor Alexander the Great.(Mark, Joshua). Socrates lived from four hundred sixty nine BCE to three hundred ninety nine BCE. In my opinion, he is one of the most powerful and persuasive Greek philosophers. He created the method of elenchus, which is also known as the socratic method. This method is an open space where someone or a group of people can sit and ask open ended questions about a topic to unfold a better, more deeper understanding. It is a system of thinking where for example, a person asks a question in a study group. After the question is presented, the rest of the circle goes around, one at a time answering the same question. It simply works by breaking down big problems, into smaller, less complicated problems.
Biology.com states that, Socrates’s life is chronicled through only a few sources”the dialogues of Plato and Xenophon and the plays of Aristophanes. The writings were not really written to report his life, and none showed a true image of what actually happened. Even-so, they give of a different and clear picture what of Socrates’ personality and philosophy was like. According to Plato, a just person can be related to a just society; both of them function similarly as a whole. Social justice occurs when each member of society plays the role for which his nature best suits him. Individual or moral justice occurs when the individual is harmonizing and keep all factors of his being in balance. Plato’s view of a just society and a just individual is the aspiration for the gain of the whole over the individual. All of these ideas ties together Plato’s ideal republic. Plato claims that justice occurs when all three parts of the whole performs their legitimate functions.
Plato carried on Socrates’ unique approach to philosophy and extended it one step farther. He expanded largely on Socrates works on immortality of the soul, truth, the existence of man on two planes, and why, only after death, one could see truth more clearly in one of his most acclaimed works, the Doctrine of Pure Form and Ideas. The doctrine of pure form and ideas illustrated how man was deceived by his senses and that they masked the real truth. In fact, Plato argued that a man would see a horse for example, in a whole new light after death, because only then could he see the pure form after the mask of his mortal senses was lifted. Furthermore, he believed that a pure form, in other words an essence that can see all for its genuine truth created the world, which many consider the true beginning of monotheism.
On the other end of the spectrum are his political contributions, whereby he took Socrates’ criticism of democracy to a new level. Plato
Originally, the term philosophy related to any structure of knowledge or recognition.
- Mark, Joshua J. Socrates. Ancient History Encyclopedia, Ancient History Encyclopedia, 6 Dec. 2018, www.ancient.eu/socrates/.
- Timmons, Greg. Socrates. Biography.com, A&E Networks Television, 28 Apr. 2017, www.biography.com/people/socrates-9488126.
- University, Florida. Department of Philosophy. What Is Philosophy?, 2018, philosophy.fsu.edu/undergraduate-study/why-philosophy/What-is-Philosophy.
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