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Socrates Apology Essay

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Upon reading the title of this famous dialogue, one gets the impression that this is revolving around a mistake that Plato has made. In reality, nothing could be farther from the truth. Plato is simply narrating the trial of Socrates, a more accurate translation of “ἀπολογία” or Apology would be Explanation or Defense. ¬This is can be compared to the same word which is used to describe the Christian Apologetics of the first century. They were not people known for apologizing for their faith but rather as people who DEFENDED what they believed in. In the trial of Socrates, this is evident as Socrates is standing up for himself against the charges of being a Physicalist, a sophist, a corrupter of the Greek youth, and impious. In the “Apology,” you can Socrates splitting into several distinct segments; His encounter with the Delphic Oracle, His description and contest of the charges against him (this can be further split), his position against the punishment, and his final speeches.
In the anecdote of the Encounter with the Delphic Oracle, Socrates describes the time in which a friend went to the Oracle asking who the wisest man in all of Greece wise. The Oracle responded that it was definitely Socrates. Upon hearing this news, Socrates was troubled. He responded by saying that he knew many men that were equally smart if not more so than he was. Socrates knew he was ignorant. Despite all the knowledge he held, Socrates considered himself to be ignorant because he knew there were things he could learn from. He brought this to the oracle and was shown that what he considered a lack of wisdom, the oracle called his greatest strength. Through acknowledging that he can improve and learn, no matter how intelligent he is, he is wise. While...

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...eks will face. Their goal in placing him on trial was not to destroy Socrates but rather to destroy Philosophy and free thinking, an impossible task. His final speech is to those who favored him. He consoles them by stating that he is perfectly fined with being killed because as soon as he is dead, he will either enjoy an eternal, uninterrupted nap or he will be conversing with other philosophers while in Hell (or Hades).

1 Physicalism- a doctrine associated with logical positivism and holding that every meaningful statement, other than the necessary statements of logic and mathematics, must refer directly or indirectly to observable properties of spatiotemporal things or events. (Dictionary.com)
2 Sophism- the act of twisting words or statistics in order to support the weaker argument. (Dictionary.com)
3 Impiety- A lack for god or sacred things. (Dictionary.com)
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