Greek's Contributions to Western Civilization

Topics: Reason, Greece, Ancient Greece Pages: 2 (812 words) Published: February 15, 2012
For many years we have been influenced by many ideas from the Greeks. Some things we have today wouldn’t be possible without the Greeks contributions to Western civilization. Out of the many great ideas they had, the three most popular ones are philosophy, math and medicine, and entertainment. These all play major parts in today’s everyday life.

In ancient Greece, philosophy was becoming a big thing. Many people were against it and wanted to get rid of philosophers. There was a famous trial in which the Athenians tried to put Socrates to rest. He was accused of attacking conventional ideas and ways of life. They said he was a bad influence on all of Athens. During the trial they gave him three options. He could be killed, exiled, or sentenced to life in jail. Socrates said, “The unexamined life is not worth living,” which means there is no point of living if he has to change his whole life around and to not be able to do what he does every day. With this they put him to death with poison. Another famous philosopher was Aristotle. Aristotle believed man is by nature and that men want to dominate and take control. He also believed in a democracy of the needy. When talking about his beliefs of human nature, he said, “Since human reason is the most godlike part of human nature, a life guided by human reason is superior to any other… For man, this is the life of reason, since the faculty of reason is the distinguishing characteristic of human beings.” What him and Socrates had in common is that they both believed that the body relies on the soul to exist but the soul cannot leave the body when someone dies and when they die the soul does too and cannot return to the world.

Math and medicine were both created by the ancient Greeks. These things are very important today and they were back then too. There was a famous physician named Hippocrates. He created the Hippocratic Oath which is the corner stone of today’s medical ethics. “I will follow that [treatment]...
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