Plato's Argument For A Just Life Plato's argument for the benefits of a just life is intrinsically linked to his definition of good and its relation to people's desires. He begins by showing that when the objective of a desire is simple (e.g. quenching a thirst), the desire must be correspondingly simple. Since thirst is a simple desire, the man's objective must also be simplistic and should we assign an adjective to his objective, we would falsely complicate it. In addition, Plato believes that we would be seriously erring if we assign a value of good to an desire.
This principle promotes a life of more pleasure than pain by choosing actions that produce more happiness. These are conscious actions made that follow a life of utility and act in accordance with the “Greatest Happiness Principle.” Though Mill’s critics would argue that Utilitarianism is not a reasonable foundation for morality by not fulfilling a life of happiness, creating selfish or expedient people, and reducing human experience to animals, I would have to disagree. This principle promotes happiness and pleasure for all, along with aiding individuals to be less selfish, and an even slate for people of all characters. I find the “Greatest Happiness Principle” to be a relevant and altruistic foundation of morality. There is an emphasis on lives containing more pleasure than pain under the rule that one person cannot put their own happiness above others.
Is Justice Profitable? Glaucon attempted to prove that injustice is preferable to justice. At first, Glacon agreed with Socrates that justice is a good thing, but implored on the nature of its goodness? He listed three types of “good”; that which is good for its own sake (such as playing games), that which is good is good in itself and has useful consequences (such as reading), and that which is painful but has good consequences (such as surgery). Socrates replied that justice "belongs in the fairest class, that which a man who is to be happy must love both for its own sake and for the results."
A platonically just life leads to harmony, balance, and virtue. A just life in this case allows attainment of satisfaction where as an unjust life does not. The truly unjust ultimately destroy themselves, whereas the truly just preserve themselves. Wether or not Platonic Justice is good for its own sake is to be determined. After Plato debates and dismisses that justice is the interest of the stronger and that the unjust life has an advantage to the just life, Plato, lacking a firm answer on justice seems to say that justice is a balance of the soul.
Within Book X, In The Republic, Socrates argues for the existence of an immortal soul. With this plead, he makes the point that good is that which preserves and benefits. Justice is good, so it therefore preserves and benefits in this life as well as the next. Therefore, even though a man may wish to behave badly when no one is looking, as with the myth of the ring of Gyges, according to Socrates, by behaving justly we will have the most rewards. Eventually, the difficulty with Socrates' arguments is that they rely on associating things on to the next in a chain that eventually leads back to the original proposition.
Therefore, the idea of the ultimate idea of the purist of happiness through true justice is folly. Justice is seen as both an individual and universal feat; it must be achieved on both levels to be complete. Plato’s example of this is the comparison between the three parts of a person’s soul- reason, spirit, and desire, in combination to the three components of a good society: lovers of wisdom, victory, and gain. These fragments are viewed as, “the best tools for the purpose” (Plato, 116). They are viewed as the best tools because of their ability to provide the proper experiences.
The Happy Life “So don’t merely give us a theoretical argument that justice is stronger than injustice, but tell us what each itself does, because of its own powers, to someone who possesses it, and that makes injustice bad and justice good”.1 In this quote from Plato’s Republic, Adeimantus challenges Socrates to demonstrate that justice is good in itself, and ultimately, to prove that the just life is the happiest life for a human being. Both Plato and Aristotle, two of antiquity’s greatest philosophers, concern themselves with the issue of human happiness. Neither thinker considers fate to be the definitive factor for achieving happiness. Rather, Plato and Aristotle argue that our actions and thoughts play a significant role in creating a happy life. This argument, as presented in Plato’s Republic and Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, also asserts that a life in accordance with justice is the happy, or good, life.
In the Republic Plato endeavours to answer complex questions about justice by introducing a unique account of what justice actually is, and how morally sensitive people are educated and informed about the real nature of justice and morality . Our understanding of justice is more profound if we insist that what really matters is not merely the observance of external demands — normative and conventional moral rules — but the character of the truly just person . Justice and goodness, based upon judgement as the virtue of a decent life, are seen as congruent in the context of a well ordered society. Plato's fundamental claim, in the Republic, is that justice is so great a good that anyone who completely embraces it is thereby better off, even in the face of the... ... middle of paper ... ...4-225  Rep. VI 573d & ibid., p.221-222)  ibid., p.327  Nagel, 1986, pp. 195-196  Rep VII, 540a-b  Rep. V, 46le-462e  Rep. IV, 419a-421c & Rep. VIII, 519d-521b  Annas, 1981, pp.
With respect to my implicit assumption, I will argue that the most questionable step in Glaucon's argument is imposing that a perfectly unjust life is more valuable than a perfectly just life, because it is full of desires. Finally, I will consider a possible objection from Glaucon, and then provide a response to solidify the argument that one can value something without necessarily desiring it. Glaucon begins his argument, for favouring an unjust life over a just life, by describing the nature of justice. He believes that being unjust is intuitively more favourable than being just (358e – 359). However, one that has both suffered from injustice and benefited from treating others unjustly concludes that suffering from injustice is far worse than the goodness gained from treating others unjustly (359a).
You can persuade others to se your point of view, but without intelligence it can be unjust. He believes that, "…doing what one sees fit without intelligence is bad." Socrates argument is that moral virtue is s form of intelligence, and convinces Polus that in order to have great power, you must use it for what you believe to be the better. Polus believes that those who have the power do what they see fit, and at the same time are doing what it is they want to do. Socrates refutes this and says that though the tyrant may do what he sees fit, it is not really what he wants to do.