Days filled with reading and strolls through museums, retirement to a tropical island, unlimited amounts of time for video games…. Whatever they may be, our concepts tend toward fantasy of the grass is greener variety. Though the work of philosophers for the past hundred years or so may seem divorced from mundane concerns and desires, this was not always so. The Platonic version of the good life comes in for a thorough drubbing at the hands of Friedrich Nietzsche, as do Aristotelian, Kantian, and Judeo-Christian ideals.
The extant sources agree that Socrates was profoundly ugly, resembling a satyr more than a man—and resembling not at all the statues that turned up later in ancient times and now grace Internet sites and the covers of books.
He had wide-set, bulging eyes that darted sideways and enabled him, like a crab, to see not only what was straight ahead, but what was beside him as well; a flat, upturned nose with flaring nostrils; and large fleshy lips like an ass. Socrates let his hair grow long, Spartan-style even while Athens and Sparta were at warand went about barefoot and unwashed, carrying a stick and looking arrogant.
Something was peculiar about his gait as well, sometimes described as a swagger so intimidating that enemy soldiers kept their distance.
He was impervious to the effects of alcohol and cold weather, but this made him an object of suspicion to his fellow soldiers on campaign. We can safely assume an average height since no one mentions it at alland a strong build, given the active life he appears to have led.
Against the iconic tradition of a pot-belly, Socrates and his companions are described as going hungry Aristophanes, Birds — In the late fifth century B. Although many citizens lived by their labor in a wide variety of occupations, they were expected to spend much of their leisure time, if they had any, busying themselves with the affairs of the city.
Other forms of higher education were also known in Athens: One of the things that seemed strange about Socrates is that he neither labored to earn a living, nor participated voluntarily in affairs of state.
Rather, he embraced poverty and, although youths of the city kept company with him and imitated him, Socrates adamantly insisted he was not a teacher Plato, Apology 33a—b and refused all his life to take money for what he did.
The strangeness of this behavior is mitigated by the image then current of teachers and students: Because Socrates was no transmitter of information that others were passively to receive, he resists the comparison to teachers.
Rather, he helped others recognize on their own what is real, true, and good Plato, Meno, Theaetetus —a new, and thus suspect, approach to education. He was known for confusing, stinging and stunning his conversation partners into the unpleasant experience of realizing their own ignorance, a state sometimes superseded by genuine intellectual curiosity.
Socrates claimed to have learned rhetoric from Aspasia of Miletus, the de facto spouse of Pericles Plato, Menexenus ; and to have learned erotics from the priestess Diotima of Mantinea Plato, Symposium. Socrates was unconventional in a related respect. Athenian citizen males of the upper social classes did not marry until they were at least thirty, and Athenian females were poorly educated and kept sequestered until puberty, when they were given in marriage by their fathers.
It was assumed among Athenians that mature men would find youths sexually attractive, and such relationships were conventionally viewed as beneficial to both parties by family and friends alike. A degree of hypocrisy or denialhowever, was implied by the arrangement: What was odd about Socrates is that, although he was no exception to the rule of finding youths attractive Plato, Charmides d, Protagoras a—b; Xenophon, Symposium 4.
Socrates also acknowledged a rather strange personal phenomenon, a daimonion or internal voice that prohibited his doing certain things, some trivial and some important, often unrelated to matters of right and wrong thus not to be confused with the popular notions of a superego or a conscience.
The implication that he was guided by something he regarded as divine or semi-divine was all the more reason for other Athenians to be suspicious of Socrates. Socrates was usually to be found in the marketplace and other public areas, conversing with a variety of different people—young and old, male and female, slave and free, rich and poor—that is, with virtually anyone he could persuade to join with him in his question-and-answer mode of probing serious matters.
Socrates pursued this task single-mindedly, questioning people about what matters most, e. He did this regardless of whether his respondents wanted to be questioned or resisted him. Who was Socrates really?In his use of critical reasoning, by his unwavering commitment to truth, and through the vivid example of his own life, fifth-century Athenian Socrates set the standard for all subsequent Western philosophy.
The great philosophers, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, and the Roman Stoics have contributed what we believe gives our life value. Each philosopher gives their own perspective of life which raises many questions by many for years.
Through the writings of Xenophon . The analytic study of Socrates, like analytic philosophy more generally, is fueled by the arguments in the texts—typically addressing a single argument or set of arguments, whether in a single text or across texts; its origins are in the Anglo-American philosophical tradition.
Socrates (philosophy) essays Socrates was a great philosopher who had an incredible impact on philosophers of his time and even philosophers today. He lived in Athens from B.C.E to B.C.E during the Periclean Age. He taught his philosophy of life on the streets to anyone who cared to liste.
Socrates Critical Essays.
Yet the study of Socrates's philosophy is plagued by the "problem of Socrates": he wrote nothing. most agree that the philosopher dedicated his life . Something that has strengthened Xenophon’s prima facie claim as a source for Socrates’s life is his work as a historian; his Hellenica Benson, Hugh H., (ed.), , Essays on the Philosophy of Socrates, New York: .