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Knowledge and Wisdom

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Socrates is widely recognized as an ancient Greek philosopher and one of the founding fathers of Western philosophy. Despite the fact that there is no real credited work to contribute to Socrates, he will always be renowned for being an enigmatic figure made famous through the works of Plato and other ancient Greek philosophers. The spirit of Socrates was always that of an inquisitive, curious, yet enlightened thinker and that is the attitude he portrayed in Plato’s Euthyphro and The Apology. Socrates was a man who manipulated anyone who would listen around him, into questioning their surroundings and contemplating philosophical questions that bridged beyond human life and into the territory of the divine. He uses rhetoric that is based on a method of constantly asking questions and begging his audience to provide him with new and enlightening ideas. Socrates never truly persuades a man to think the same way he does or to even share the same beliefs, yet his conversational skills frequently persuade his partners in dialogue to be curious for their own sake. Although we may never know who Socrates was, we can confidently interpret his philosophical intentions as a motivation to stir up the established truth and tradition and to provoke the common man to become a wise philosopher himself.

In the stories of Euthyphro and The Apology, we observe Socrates as he is about to go on trial for false teachings and imposing various disillusionments on the citizens of Athens. Regardless of what went on in the context of the story, we learned that Socrates personally does not believe himself to be wise whatsoever. Instead, he claims that only truth he is truly certain of in his life is that he knows absolutely nothing. This is disavowal of knowledge is the ultimate provocative statement that drives the debate between knowledge and philosophy. Socrates’ claim can be seen as incredibly ironic in the sense that here we have an intellect that is widely regarded as...