Plato's Republic Journal

Pages: 2 (886 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Black Studies - Philosophy

Plato

One of the most influential minds in western philosophy describing this search for meaning was Plato. Plato lived from 422-347 B.C, and was born into an aristocratic family in the city of Athens where he became a student of Socrates, and eventually a teacher of Aristotle. As a student of Socrates, Plato followed the structure of philosophical agreement to ensure a just society - no laws are to be broken despite their relevance. The ability for an agreed upon purpose to structure society, law, is important to both the general populace and to philosophers. This theme of law, self-actualization, and justification of responses, resources, and human thought would run through all of Plato's works. Plato's "Theory of Forms" or "Theory of Ideas" assets that non-material ideas are the basis for truth and fundamental reality, not the material and constantly evolving world we perceive on a daily basis. For Plato, these Forms were essential in formulating his views on the universe and human interaction within that universe. For example, Plato would not deny that we might be looking at a tree, but it is the consideration of that tree -- its color, texture, shape, smell, weight, position, etc. that, once we remove from the tree, is an independent variable from the physical nature of that object -- the tree. As one moves up from images, to material objects, into forms, one eventually reaches a hierarchy, or what Plato termed "Form of Good," the absolute truth of systems.Get full Download Microsoft Word File access
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Journal on Plato's Republic Assignment

To Plato, justice meant carrying out one's appropriate duty to their position/station in life -- justice is done for the good of society, the good of the people and is not universal. For example, if one is in a position that requires something immoral (like lying), then it is just if one lies -- for the greater good. Most ideas of justice seem to revolve more around a Judeo-Christian concept of right/wrong that are absolutes -- black and white. There is no room for because of, or circumstances. For instance, "Thou shall not kill." -- except in war of course, or in the line of law enforcement duty (debatable). But, if someone we know is brain dead or suffering, we cannot help them end their pain because that is killing -- but we would give that respect to an animal, just not a human. Therein lies some of the hypocrisy of the idea of universal justice. "Justice is really the good of another, what is advantageous for the stronger, and harmful to those served. Injustice is the opposite" (21).

Part 2- By the end of Book II, Socrates has ended most of his arguments regarding justice,… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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