Reasoning and Reflections Chapter

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Chapter I
Subsection II

1) Socrates came to some clear conclusions after he investigated several men who laid claim to being wise. Do you think his observations were accurate about the claims we make? In the last analysis, according to Socrates, what makes a person wise?

When a person has devoted their life to the study of or work in a particular field that study/work tends to consume and define a persons entire life. They live by the standards set to them by choosing to focus so completely on the way of living that makes their study/work most productive or easiest. They gain a certain amount of knowledge and at some point decide they know it all. They take up a presumptuous attitude to be able to answer any question asked of them regarding their field of study or work. They then use that same attitude in everyday living. This is what I interpreted from the writing about Socrates. That everyman professed a certain superior intelligence in any field in which they were questioned, even if they had not had prior instruction in that field. Since they were proficient in that study/work to which they devoted their own lives, they presumed to know everything about any other subject in which they were interviewed. According to Socrates, "The wisest of you men is he who has realized...that in respect of wisdom he is really worthless." As long as man realizes that he does not know everything, that he could continue to inquire all his life and still not be wise, then he has gained a sort of wisdom in that knowledge.


Chapter I

Subsection III

11) In 21 you find the statement, "A critical thinker engages in a special kind of listening." What exactly is that special kind of thinking?

When two people engage in an argument and one makes a statement, the critical thinker would want to know how the other disputant arrived at his conclusion. He would ask what is the reasoning behind your conclusion? Or, by what...
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