Essay PreviewMore ↓
In his book titled The Republic Plato arises many questions concerning the philosophy of life. One of the most difficult subjects that he touches is the definition of justice. He tries to explain to his fellow friends how is the good man supposed to behave, and which is better to be just or unjust but that answer becomes very complicated and leads Plato to examine that rather complex subject in great detail. He demolishes the three popular definitions of justice that are brought up, which imply that justice is "
paying one's debts," "helping friends and harming enemies," and "whatever is to the advantage of the stronger" and argues that these definitions are not complete. He promises to find a better explanation of justice that would satisfy everyone. Plato argues that in order to find justice in an individual one must find a justice in a city as a whole first, because ideal form or structure of the perfect city resembles the ideal form of the good person. Once we know what justice is it will be easy to see the injustice. In order to define justice correctly he starts to create his ideal polis, a perfect city, where justice must play a major part. Yet, the city that Plato creates develops in two stages; first, the healthy city where there are only the things that are needed for survival and a luxurious city where people have more then they need.
Plato decides that a polis begins because we cannot all be self-sufficient. It arises out of the wants of man. His first want is food; his second a shelter; his third a clothing. The sense of these needs and the possibility of satisfying them by exchange, draw individuals together on the same spot; and this is the beginning of a State, which we take the liberty to invent, although it is the necessity to live in a larger community that actually invents the polis. In order for the community to satisfy its basic needs, it will need a farmer to produce food, a builder to build houses, a weaver to provide food, a cobbler, and someone who would provide medical care. In Plato's eyes, four or five citizens at least are required to make a city. Each of these people would have to contribute equally to the community and since each person can only one thing well, there must be a division of labor into different employments; into wholesale and retail trade; into workers, and makers of workmen's tools; into shepherds and husbandmen.
How to Cite this Page
"Plato's View on Life." 123HelpMe.com. 13 Dec 2018
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Introduction Paper When most think about death and the after life they suddenly become shaken. Is death painful. Is it scary. Is there like after death. Are we truly at peace. What happens to our soul. Those who believe that God is our creator they seem to be less frightened about the idea of death. Socrates on the other hand was never once frightened about the idea of death. Throughout the Apology, one is able to clearly analyze Socrates’ view on death and the soul. The Apology is the actual speech delivered by Socrates during his death trial.... [tags: Socrates, Plato, Life, Philosophy]
1192 words (3.4 pages)
- Plato’s view of division of labour is divided into three types of peoples’ task in life which are workers as farmers, military type and guardians. Actually, the ruling task of Plato’s Republic is the guardian’s responsible who had achieved the greatest wisdom or knowledge of good. Due to that, Plato claims that “philosopher must become kings or those now who called kings must genuinely and adequately philosophise’’ (Nussbaum1998, p.18). However, people argue about the reasons that the philosopher should rule the city, while the philosophers prefer to gain knowledge instead of power, thus they don’t seek this authority.... [tags: Plato, Divisions of Labor, Plato’s Republic, Repub]
981 words (2.8 pages)
- Socrates Plato, and Aristotle have had a huge influence on Philosophy is still incomparable, up to this day. From what I have learned in this course, I will explain how they have inspired, invented and even have changed many people’s view on life. One of Plato’s theories is his view on the universe, called Theory of Forms. According to Plato, we live in world that is constantly undertaking change. Plato says that nothing is ever permanent; people, animals and crops, and wildlife live and then die eventually.... [tags: Plato, Philosophy, Socrates, Aristotle]
1544 words (4.4 pages)
- There isn’t much known about Plato’s early life accept that he was born 428 B.C., both sides of his parents were well off financially and politically, and that he studied under Socrates. Plato was a faithful follower of Socrates, but they did not agree on everything, for instance they had a different view on the education of women. Plato believed that women could be taught and Socrates did not share this view. In Plato’s early 20’s he was very interested in a political career, his Uncle Critas had a major role in overthrowing a democratic government.... [tags: Plato, Philosophy, Democracy, Thirty Tyrants]
1536 words (4.4 pages)
- In this essay, I argue that people living a just life choose to be just and remain happy despite all the injustices done to them even after all the rewards of reputation are taken away from them. Through Allegories, Plato makes Glaucon, Adeimantus, Thrasymachus and others to understand this nortion. The Republic is considered by many philosophers as the best of Plato’s greatest dialogues which had vast influence on the Western thought. Plato establishes theories and mythic stories touching on reality and knowledge, human nature and politics, ethics, education and arts within the very ambitious republic book.... [tags: Plato, Justice, Philosophy, Ethics]
1428 words (4.1 pages)
- Plato's Apology Plato’s Apology is the story of the trial of Socrates, the charges brought against him and his maintaining of his own innocence throughout the process. At the onset of the trial, Socrates appears to challenging the charges, which included corrupting the youth, challenging belief in the gods that were accepted and reveled by the State, and introducing a new religious focus, but also belittles his own significance and suggesting that he will not attempt to disprove that he participated in the actions maintained by the court.... [tags: Apology by Plato]
1076 words (3.1 pages)
- In the time of the Greek Empire, when they defined themselves as the world power, the creation and development of sciences both physical and social were in a revolution. One notable science that saw strides of development were the sciences of philosophy, a system of logic, debate and desire for wisdom. The most noted and heard of these men was the formidable Aristotle, but the importance here is in a student, Plato. Plato was an idealistic philosopher, who saw beyond physical constraints of life into his higher beliefs of formless ideas being a truth of life and reality.... [tags: Plato's Philosophies, Greek Empire]
839 words (2.4 pages)
- Philosophers are all known for questioning and exploring Ideals; taking a look at all options and what is most important. While Aristotle and Plato both take a plunge into the unknowns of a political state, Aristotle demonstrates a state for individuals, to rule as equals, contrary to Plato’s strict utopian structure and group over individual hierarchy view of the ideal state. Plato’s ideal state is strictly structured through a utopian ideal. Everything within Plato’s ideal state has a place and purpose, and everyone within it is aware of that.... [tags: aristotle, plato's ideal, utopia]
988 words (2.8 pages)
- The basic premise of Plato's allegory of the cave is to depict the nature of the human being, where true reality is hidden, false images and information are perceived as reality. In the allegory Plato tells a story about a man put on a Gnostics path. Prisoners seating in a cave with their legs and necks chained down since childhood, in such way that they cannot move or see each other, only look into the shadows on the wall in front of them; not realizing they have three-dimensional bodies.... [tags: Plato's Allegory, Human Nature]
1131 words (3.2 pages)
- Plato was a philosopher and educator in ancient Greece. He was one of the most important thinkers and writers in the history of Western culture. Plato was born in Athens into a family that was one of the oldest and most distinguished in the city. His father Ariston died when Plato was only a child. The name Plato was a nickname meaning broad shoulders. Plato's real name was Aristocles. Plato had aspirations of becoming a politician, however these hopes were destroyed when his friend Socrates was sentenced to death in 299 B.C.... [tags: essays research papers]
501 words (1.4 pages)
Even though Plato's ideal polis has enough citizens, his fellow friends argue that his city is not satisfying and needs some comforts of life. What Plato states is that with more comforts the city will not be the primitive polis he intended but a luxurious city. He then adds the fine arts, dancers, painters, sculptors, musicians, cooks, barbers, tire-women, nurses, artists, and physicians to cure the disorders of which luxury is the source. Yet he realizes that in order to fit all people in the city, it has to be increased in size therefore it needs more land, which has to acquire from its neighbor. And this is the origin of war, which may be traced to the same causes as other political evils. The city will now require the slight addition of a camp, and the citizen will be converted into soldiers called guardians. But then again, due to the division of labor, the soldiers must be full time and it has to be their only profession. The guardians, according to Plato must be in a great physical condition and must be "spirited." They have to be gentle and kind to their own people and must be specially trained for that purpose.
The guardian's education must consist of physical training for the body and music and poetry for the soul. The stories taught to the guardians must be true. The stories about gods that include fighting, plotting against one another should not be allowed because of the fact that guardians might take example from them and eventually turn against their own city. The gods must be represented as they truly are; as the creators of all good things, as fairest and best in their own image, as absolutely true and just. According to Plato just, as education is important for the guardians their life style should include many sacrifices for the good of the city. The guardians should have no property; their pay should only meet their expenses, have common meals, and never marry. Plato implies that if they ever acquire houses, lands, or money of their own, they will become householders and tradesmen instead of guardians, enemies and tyrants instead of helpers, and that would lead to the destruction of the city.
In Plato's ideal polis, the charge of the city belongs to the wisest citizens, who understand justice; how both the city and the individual ought to be arranged. The true ruler would be philosopher, "lover of knowledge" and a king. He ought to be a lover of the vision of truth, a lover of wisdom, as opposed to lover of opinion. Another very important aspect of Plato's perfect polis is the fact that it not only contains justice but also other virtues, like wisdom, courage, and moderation or self-discipline. Wisdom Plato suggests is a general kind of knowledge; it is a good judgment about the city as a whole and maintaining good relations both internally and with other cities. Wisdom is usually found in ruler because they are the ones with the most knowledge and are capable of knowing what is good and bad for the city. Courage is the power to preserve belief about what things are to be feared. Also, it helps to hold on to one's belief and not giving in to fear, pleasures, pains, and desires. Courage according to Plato belongs to guardians, because it is the courage that helps them preserve order, and avoids them form talking over the city. The last comes moderation, which to Plato means self --control, good sense, chastity, temperance. It controls one's soul and prevents from pleasures and desires.
Even though Plato starts off with this ideal polis, he often realizes that ideal city can not exist because there will always be someone who does not agree with the rest and wants more control. From his description, we can assume that giving all the military power to the strongest group of people in the city might cause some trouble if they decide to take it over. The job specialization also posses a problem because at one point people would want to become not as depended on others as they are. If one group of workers decides to form their own city the rest of the population will severly suffer because the will not be able replace those workers very easily. So even though Plato's idea seems very well though and interesting it seems as if there is not such a thing as a perfect society, where everyone gets along great and is happy with one's life.