Platonism and Knowledge

Topics: Platonism, Plato, Socrates Pages: 7 (2741 words) Published: May 12, 2013
Page 1


Symposium and The Death of Socrates is an ancient Greek text by Phaedo. This old text occurred philosophy, stories and Genesis quote from the Bible. Platonic love is a philosophy which was main concern of this text. Platonic love is a type of love that is pure and non-sexual. Symposium, or drinking party. This party is for those whose want to discuss a philosophy of love. In the dialogue, Socrates discusses the nature of the afterlife on his last day before being executed by drinking poison. Beginning of this Symposium, Plato is talking with Echecrates about him and other company, last time to see Socrates before he drink poison to death of trial. Socrates, philosopher as usual he had speeches after he sat up on his bed, flexing his leg and rubbing it with his hand. And as he rubbed it, he said; ‘What a strange thing it seem, gentlemen, this thing men call pleasure. And how surprisingly connected with its apparent opposite, pain.’ The people of Athens were filled with question about final judgment. Socrates was accused at the end of his life of impiety and corruption of youth. Rumors, prejudices, and question flew about the town. Plato experienced this situation when Socrates, his teacher and friend, accept the ruling of death from an Athenian court. “Phaedo” not only helped the general population of Athens and the friends and followers of Socrates understand his death, but also showed Socrates in the best possible light. They are connected by their common theme of a memoriam to Socrates and the discussion of virtues. By studying this text, researcher can see into the ulture of Athens, and relationships between friends. “If the truth of all things always existed in the soul, then the soul is immortal”. This states that since the soul has all knowledge integrated, one recollects this knowledge through situations in an individual’s life and use one’s reasoning.

Basically, through this event, Socrates has assisted the boy in discovering the truth through only one method of recollecting stored knowledge. Even though the boy may seem confused by the questions, it is only because he has not realized that he had this knowledge and has been obtained. As well, this process of recollection can be taken one step further. Since the boy has not learned or always had this knowledge within him, then it questions the time when the knowledge was processed. Socrates ponders this thought and explains that, “His soul must have always possessed this knowledge, for he either was or was not a man . This explains that it is an innate notion, where the soul always has the knowledge and can be obtained through remembering said knowledge. Therefore, Socrates believes that since the truth is always inside the soul, then it must be immortal. The soul has all knowledge, and through the process of recollection, one can recover this information. Phaedo, the second dialogue of Plato’s theory, states that only through the forms and absolutes, an individual can have knowledge. It has been questioned how society can have the knowledge of an absolute if we haven’t discovered said absolute. Socrates reflects, “The thing which I see aims at being like some other thing, but falls short of and cannot be like that other thing, and is inferior”. That is to say that in order to have the understanding of an absolute of something, we can derive its meaning from the things that do not meet the requirements. In addition, to derive the conceptualization of an absolute, an individual can only use the senses one is given. As well, Socrates declares, “From the senses then is derived the conception that all sensible equals aim at an absolute equality of which they fall short. As a result, the senses can only see the items that come close to being equal or beautiful, but are not perfect in being equal or beautiful. It is how these items are perceived that one’s opinion will fall short of...
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