Essay - Socrates' - the Unexamined Life is not Worth Living Socrates...


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Socrates' - The Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living

***** is convinced that "the unexamined life is not worth living for a human being" (Ap. 38a5-6), it is clear that he must suppose there to be extremely high value in philosophical activity. But even th***** value is difficult to make out. Despite hav*****g lived by this principle for so many years now, Socrates is convinced that he remains ignorant of "anything fine and good" (Ap. 21d3-4). And because Socrates sees vice as nothing other than moral ignorance, it might seem puzzling how he could claim to be any better *****f than those whose vice he h***** struggled ***** eradicate t*****rough philosophy. After all, he is no less ig*****rant than t*****y are; his superior wisdom lies solely in his recogn*****ion of the ignorance he shares with them. Scattered throughout the early dialogues are a variety ***** principles which Socrates plainly endorses. *****' acceptance of these principles appears to have been generated through ***** practice of philosophy (Palmer, 1988). Thus, by living the philosophical ***** he has come to recognize a variety of ways in which ***** could ***** acted wrongfully; by following his principles he has avoided m***** evils he might *****wise have committed. And precisely because happiness is assured ***** ***** action from the fact that Socrates can make a number of import*****nt judgments ***** guide him to good actions, we can be confident that at least up until the time of ***** trial, he ***** ***** some degree genuinely happy.

One ***** especially stands out--his examin*****ions ***** himself and o*****rs. It is precisely ***** activity, according to Socrates, that has made his life worthwhile. Socrates s*****s ***** he regards this activity as necessary for happiness when he says, "the unexamined life is not worth ***** for a hum*****n *****" (Ap. 38a5-6). He goes on ***** show that he thinks it is sufficient for happiness when he indicates that so long as he could engage in th***** *****, ***** would consider himself happy: he would count it as an "*****conceivable happiness" (Ap. 41c3-4) if death offers him ***** opportunity to pursue his mission with t***** dead in Hades. In order ***** underst***** t***** claim, we do ***** need to assume that Socrates would miraculously receive virtue in the afterlife--just engaging in this activity alone is enough for Socrates to judge his condition happy. Accordingly, good activity is sufficient for happiness; virtue itself is not *****ed. But once ***** opportunity for good ***** has been taken away, as it has ***** by his conviction, and since he considers all of t***** possible penalties other than paying a ***** to be evils (Ap. 37b5-e2), Socrates no longer counts his life as worthwhile, *****ing that he will be better off dead, ***** if death is *****thing more than utter extinction (Ap. 40c5). The power of the jury ***** constrain what Socrates ***** ***** justly makes clear ***** no measure ***** happiness, however small, can be ensured during one's *****.

What Socrates asserts, *****

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