socretes philosophy

Two short question answers 

Question 1: Socrates would  say that caring for the soul which is concerned with moral truth and understanding is important? I cant give it a bath or feed it, or can I? Give one way you can care for your soul using Socrates definition of soul.

Question 2: Socrates would argue that it is ok to come to a point of rational ignorance. I have gone as far as I can and there are still more questions, there is still more to learn.  Is it ok be in the place he describes as rational ignorance? We want definitive answers and we  want them immediately. We live in the age of the internet with many answers to the same question. We get them immediately. I might ask : are we (humans) responsible for the changes in weather that are occurring? I can get two different answers based on what I look up and where I look.  Yet, Socrates would say that there is truth. We have to dig to find it. We have to dialogue and question the assumptions of each side. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Ginsberg died. She spent a lifetime arguing cases that were based on inequality. She believed in equality and race, sex, or religion could not be used to create laws that promoted inequality. She was discriminated against as a woman. She was one of the first women to be accepted to Harvard. After Law School, although she graduated at the top of her class, she was denied employment at top law firms because she was a woman. She was told as a Jew that she could not live in certain neighborhoods. Is there an issue you feel passionately about? What makes you feel passionately about it ?What questions did you ask to become an advocate for that issue?

socretes philosophy

two short answer paragraphs 8-10 sentences each

1.Socrates believed we have reason and the ability to use logic. We can arrive at truth. The ability to use this gift leads to wisdom. That truth is held within us. We chose to act on that truth. We have self control because we chose to act using wisdom. Thus we contain free will. We have a duty for self examination, to know our self and to act accordingly using the gift of wisdom. This knowledge, in turn, leads one to be a virtuous person. Why would you act otherwise? We want to be happy. A happy life means we use our logic and reason to consistently act in a virtuous manner. We are happy because our outward reality reflects our inner wisdom. A person assumes a position of ignorance to question and arrive at truth or even a point of rational ignorance. This is as far as I can go now. There is more. He/she keeps questioning. Good citizens (virtuous) bring about riches for all Socrates would believe.

2.What are some riches you see in society that have come about through people who have used their reason and logic to live a virtuous life that ,in turn, has enriched the society we live in today? Give an examples and explain how it demands a different way of thinking, a different logic.. One I can think of is the women who raised the question of why women who do the same work as a man are paid less because of their gender. We now have laws that demand that gender can not be used to discriminate against women. Equal work demands equal pay. Why does a woman not have equal value to man when the work is equal. I have to ask is it ok to see women as inferior to males ? What makes a woman inferior? Society changes because women demanded to be seen as having equal value. We just celebrated 100 years of the women’s suffrage movement. Women demanded the right to vote. The women demanded a different way of thinking that led to gender equality. 

socretes philosophy

 Socrates idea: people strive for happiness; happiness occurs through wisdom and finding truth. We are constantly seeking truth as to how we should live. If we know truth we have an issue acting or making decisions contrary to that truth. For Socrates that truth is held within our “soul” ( the thinking and willing subject). Our knowledge will make us humble not arrogant. Yet, it is that knowledge that produces happiness. Why? It is because there is congruency between our inner world where we know truth and the use our wisdom to choose to act in a consistent manner to the truth held within our soul. We create happiness. ( this is what you are reacting to in your paper and should be part of your introduction)

We want to live a happy life. How do we get this happy life?   We use our gift of logic and reason to find truth. When we find truth we hold it within our soul.( the place within where we will our action) Then we have to live by that truth. It is living by that truth that may cause us conflict but we are happy because we have followed truth. For Socrates happiness would not be having a lot of money. He would see happiness or fulfillment coming from having acted consistently upon truth. Having a huge paycheck would be a value that comes from the world or society. In fact, he worked to supply the basics for his family. His wife hounded him to make more money and not spend so much time in the public square teaching and debating with others. He walked around barefoot and his clothes were worn. The fact that he was honest and sought truth was more important than money. In fact, Plato indicates that Socrates did not charge his students. Spending his time teaching and debating with his students  had more value for instance than a large house.  

Note that for Socrates I am happy because my outer world reflects my inner world of what I know to be true and I choose constantly to make decisions to act according to that truth. Happiness is connected to knowledge of truth.  Ask two people to describe what they consider a happy life to be and how they would create it. What is their description? What would yours be? Are there similarities with his definition? Are there differences. How do you account for the similarities and differences? 

I expect a well developed paper that follows the criteria  For example:

Introduction: Socrates concept of how we create a happy life. Your position where you agree, disagree or would modify his position. Position of the two people you asked what a happy life is and how they would create it.

Body 1: Explanation of Socrates idea and application showing how it would work. For example, if Socrates found that to tell a lie is wrong because it involves denying what is true, how would he be doing his taxes during our current tax season? Would he adjust his income by  undervaluing his assets and inflating his debts to reduce his taxes?  Would he claim to have given money to charity that he did not give? For example claiming he gave $20 a week to his church (1,400) when he actually gave $2.00. (104).

Body 2: Do you find you agree with his definition of a happy life and how to create it. Do you disagree? Would you modify it? Explain your reasoning and give some examples for support.

Body 3: Looking at the response of the people you questioned, how are they similar or different from Socrates? How did they support their concept?

Conclusion: How would you account for the similarities and differences in what happiness is as well as how to create it? 

socretes philosophy

Homework 1. One of Socrates most famous quotes is ” the unexamined life is not worth living.” Give two reasons and an example why you agree or disagree with his statement. 

Homework 2. Why is there a greater chance of finding what is true in a dialogue than an argument? Think of how the process and the emotional context differ? In a dialogue we want to arrive at a place of truth and take the correct action. Today one issue is health care. One side would argue that everyone has a right to good health care; in fact, the same care ; it is a human right. The other would argue it is a commodity. Not everyone deserves the same care. You can chose how much care you want to purchase.  A dialogue would involve questioning the suppositions of each side. I may believe all humans have equal value. You may believe health care is a commodity like any other commodity and the distribution should be fair but not necessarily equal. Pick one of the suppositions and ask two questions about the supposition that would help us understand if that supposition is true as it is or needs clarification. ( look at the fish example. A dog swims. Is it a fish? Logic would tell you no. There are qualities of a fish that are very different from a dog. Not everything that swims is a fish)

Homework 3 A recent article pointed out that in many places in China the inflection rate regarding the pandemic has dropped to being non existent. Life has returned to normal. Masks were mandated. There were fines for not wearing one. If diagnosed with COVID, isolation was mandatory. Contact tracing was mandatory. Inoculation was mandated. Failure to follow the mandates could result in being sent to jail. For life to return to normal, would you accept the same mandates? Explain what would make it acceptable or unacceptable since the desired outcome would be regular face to face classes for students, open restaurants and bars, sporting events and contact sports  resuming and no restrictions on the number of people allowed in a gathering such as a wedding or church service. Be sure to include two reasons and support each reason.  

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