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Socrates And The "Examined Life"
Socrates was a man of great faith. The satisfaction of living in search of knowledge, true wisdom, godliness, and God’s will. In Plato’s Apology, Socrates gave a convincing account of the life he had chosen. He believed that this way of life was not right in any sense of the word, but it was good for him and the people he met. This is seen when he said: “Men of Athens, I am far from defending myself now in myself, as I can think; ; for if you kill me, you will not find another like me” (35, 30d).
Socrates ‘begins his arguments by turning knowledge beliefs into truth. Socrates became very busy asking questions to people who he considered very intelligent. He does not say that he has this knowledge himself, “Surely, I would boast and show myself if I have this knowledge, but I do not have it, sir” (25, 20c), but he argues that this knowledge is not true wisdom. , and it does not lead to a “tested life”. “What has made my reputation is nothing but a kind of wisdom” (25, 20d). The truth is, Socrates believes that there is true wisdom that is fed by curiosity. He found the wisdom he has by examining his own life and that of other people. He does not confuse himself with personal gain and “knowledge” like those who are considered the wisest of all. Instead he is firmly rooted in the will of God, and he takes his quest for a selflessly tested life. For example, Socrates believes that he is wise, because he knows that he does not know anything, while others believe that he knows when he does not know, “I am wiser than this man … I do not know, or I do not think that I know; therefore I can be wise … “(26, 21d).
Socrates emphasizes his argument with the words telling the judges that he would rather be as he is, without knowledge or ignorance than to be like the “wise” people and have it all, “I asked myself … to be like me, or their wisdom now their ignorance, or having both.” The answer I gave myself with the holy words was that it was for my good to be like me” (27, 22e). Finally, he tells the judges of the prayers and interprets the message of the links as setting Socrates as an example for other people, “as if he said: ‘This man among you, people, is the wisest, like Socrates, he knows wisdom and vanity'” (27, 23b).
Socrates believes that the tested life is one that is used to seek inner and spiritual wisdom, to ask questions and examine the lives of others, and to seek the best life of life, “For I go about doing nothing but persuading the young and the old among you to take care of nothing. your body or your wealth instead of or as strongly as your life would be best” (34, 30b). He interviewed people who thought they were wise and helped them see that what they expected was not the way to find true wisdom and satisfaction.
These words spoken by Socrates about the unenlightened life being worthless to live is understandable from one point of view, but it is not true if it is taken from the mind of a person who does not care about this kind of wisdom and has no motivation to look at it. . It is the same principle that ignorance is bliss. People can live very happy, even simple lives, even without asking the questions that people like Socrates try to ask. When it comes to those who have a desire to understand and have a passion for true wisdom like Socrates, however, not pursuing that desire will not fulfill it. So according to Socrates’ point of view, this statement is clear and should be true for people who have this kind of interest, but for many other people it does not work. There can be an argument that a life with a person who does not pay attention to true wisdom remains a life without meaning, but only from the point of view of a person who is looking in from the outside. For the person who lives in it, his life has all the meaning in the world. It just depends on the assumptions taken. These words are so bold that it is impossible for anyone to agree with them. I think that Socrates is only thinking from the point of view of a person who has this knowledge, and not considering the possibilities of a person who does not bother with interest and curiosity.
Issue 4: The Conflict Between “Just” and “Right”
Socrates makes a number of very powerful arguments in the dialogue between the Apology and the Crito. In the book Apology, he said that if he had been released, he would have continued to live the life he was living. He wholeheartedly believes that what he is doing by asking questions and seeking answers and true wisdom is the right way to live. It was given to him by God and he is just fulfilling his mission. Socrates argues that he must do what is right and if this meant breaking the law, then he really had to do it, because what is ordered by God is more important than what is ordered by the government, or laws. Nothing should come before the good, and Socrates believes that this outweighs what the rulers say is just.
Later in Crito, Socrates meets Crito who suggests that he flee and escape. In this discussion, Socrates argues that it would indeed be wrong for him to break the law, even if his decision was unjust. In this case, the law comes before everything else. He says that if he were to run away, he would be a bad example of what he believed in and would rather face death than live the life he was afraid of, or where he might be called. if scared. Crito gives several reasons that must be justified for Socrates to flee. He mentioned his reputation, and the fact that he will forever be scorned as a man who believes that money is more important than his friends. He also explained the fact that he believes that those who are accusing him and killing him are actually his enemies. They must do everything in their power not to benefit them, and they must run away from opposing them. Finally Crito tells Socrates that he is careless for refusing because he is leaving his sons. His children are the ones who should encourage him to stay, because they need a father in their lives to raise them well. Socrates listens to each of these reasons to flee with interest, but in the end, he still refuses to flee. He says that breaking the law is not right, no matter how unjust the law seems.
So, in Apology, we have an argument that tells us to do what we know is right no matter what. This means that since Socrates believed that his life was ordered by God, he must follow that path no matter what. On the other hand, we have an argument in the Crito that tells us that breaking laws, even if they seem unjust, can be wrong. He supports these arguments in their own context. Firstly, we have clear reasons that justice in leading the way of life that God has set for him is more than anything else, and secondly, it is wrong to oppose your government even if the decision is unjust.
After reading and observing each of these cases and analyzing Socrates’ words in each case, I am convinced that they are not consistent. In the Apology, Socrates spoke about the evils of politics and corruption. He said: “Do you think that I would have been alive all these years if I had been doing things for all people, and doing things that show that I am a good person, and I consider this to be very important?” Athens, or any other person” (37, 32e). When Socrates describes the principles of the justice system as fraudulent, he supports the fact that what he is doing with his life is what God ordered him to do. He refuses to live in any other way, even later in the Crito, Socrates argues that it would be wrong for him to leave and escape death because he would be breaking the law. He also makes it clear that his principles and values have not changed. He says that he is still true to what he said in the past and he defends those principles. as he did before. This is clearly understood when he says, “I cannot, now that this calamity has befallen me, throw away the principles I used; it seems to me very similar. I appreciate and respect the same principles as before … “(48) and, 46b).
An argument to say that the two statements are not compatible would be to say that one simply undermines the other. In other words, Socrates only uses breaking the law superficially by thinking about what would happen if he were freed by words that do not speak as they do. Another situation in Crito is very powerful because what he says about following the law is right and just, and the truth is the real situation he is in. thoughts, because they are two extreme words that boldly oppose each other. It does not seem right to say that the government is secondary in one argument and then say that the government is the foundation of justice and must be followed in another.
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