The Socratic Method

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From the works of Plato to the views of Socrates, the definition of justice has been argued and disputed by the wisest. Socrates believed that justice was good and discovered a universal good; therefore every man is capable of finding good. Good exists as happiness, determined by what we value most. What lies in the midst of our thoughts, that an “unexamined life” is acceptable? Through the use of questioning we begin to break down the walls of ignorance and live a life that is worth living.

In 399 B.C., three Athenian citizens brought a public charge against Socrates, which is seen throughout the book, The Apology. Like all other Greeks, specifically the Athenians believed that the gods would damn the entire city if people went against their gods, so to not anger the gods, the city passed a law forbidding impiety; which was what they charged Socrates. His impious acts inclu ded not believing in the gods of the city, introducing new ideas, and corrupting the youth. Throughout the text, we notice Socrates’ modesty, his questioning habit, and his devotion to truth. He explained his purpose as a philosopher, eventually concluding that he has the kind of wisdom that each of them lacks: an awareness of their ignorance. His goal is to help individuals achieve self-awareness – self- knowledge – even if it turns ugly in character. His method of questioning can be personal in the struggle to understand everything. He speaks that the great issues of life and virtue in part are necessarily valuable.

Socrates states that he is on trial for heresy concerning the youth of that time, for encouraging them and helping them get to a place where they are dependent on their own thoughts. He answers this claim by telling a story about a Delling Or...

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...Socratic Method is important in the search for justice because it institutes awareness. Our sense of good or of what is good – what we see as good – is morality. It is built in man. To discover self is to discover the greater things in life that are truly important. Ignorance blinds us from the realization of our self-worth, but an examined life leads to a life that is not plagued by what we see as the norm; but a life of awareness of our own ignorance.

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