Buddha vs Socrates

Topics: Noble Eightfold Path, Gautama Buddha, Four Noble Truths Pages: 4 (1393 words) Published: October 31, 2012
Philosophy and Common Sense
As famous historic figures, Buddha and Socrates may be known as the smartest men on earth. They have set the standards in understanding religion and common sense. Both were respected leaders who many like to think started a revolution. Writings based upon their lives used to be and still are considered the basis of life to some people. As different as they are on the outside, they could be exactly the same from the inside.

In Plato’s writing, Apology, Socrates defends himself against the court for not recognizing the gods recognized by the state. Because of a prophecy by the Oracle at Delphi saying he is the wisest man, he takes it as a command from Apollo to question men who think they are wiser. As soon as he does that, it makes him look less humble and is looked down upon because he should never try to outsmart the gods by trying to do their job. Even though Socrates says he doesn’t think he is any better than any other man, he still tries to compare himself with other known wise men. “However, I reflected as I walked away: 'Well, I am certainly wiser than this man. It is only too likely that neither of us has any knowledge to boast of; but he thinks that he knows something which he does not know, whereas I am quite conscious of my ignorance. At any rate it seems that I am wiser than he is to this small extent, that I do not think that I know what I do not know'” (Ap. 21 d-e). Socrates was starting to realize that he was smarter and that did not mix well with the court.

The homeless state was endowed by Gotama Siddhartha, or better known as Buddha. As a prince at first, he learns that life is not to be taken for granted and that it should lived accordingly. “…Being thorough in the religious life, thorough in the peaceful life, thorough in good actions, thorough in meritorious conduct, thorough in harmlessness, thorough in kindness to all creatures” (Reilly 2007: 196). Why waste time being mean and bitter, when life is so...
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