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The Final Argument

The Final Argument

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The Final Argument

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  1. The Final Argument • Socrates’ replies to Cebes’ by presenting a final argument for the immortality of the soul • Some forms are inseparable from the things that have it—they are essential forms. Cold is essential to snow, heat is essential to fire, oddness is essential to the number 3

  2. The soul is that which brings life to the body. There can be no soul without life, therefore, the life is essential to the soul • But if life is essential to the soul, then the soul cannot die. • Therefore the soul is immortal

  3. Criticisms • Argument assumes that to be alive a body must possess a separate “thing” a soul • The proper conclusion is not that the soul lives forever, but that if there is a soul, there must be life— Just as fire is hot implies that if there is fire, there is also heat.

  4. The main questions of the Republic • Is it better to be just or unjust? • What is it for a person to be just? • What is an ideal city? What makes the ideal city a just city. • Plato connects these moral questions with fundamental issues in metaphysics and epistemology: what is knowledge? What is the true nature of reality?

  5. Book II of the Republic • Glaucon and Socrates distinguish three different kinds of Good? • Which kind is justice?

  6. The three kinds of good • Good in itself (intrinsically good • Good in itself and for its consequences • Good only for its consequences (or only good as a means)

  7. Glaucon argues for the view that justice is a good, but only for its consequences, and is in fact bad in and of itself • Socrates holds justice is good in itself and for its consequences

  8. The Ring of Gyges Suppose you had a ring that would make you invisible (allowing you commit injustice without being discovered). If such a ring were available how would a just person’s actions differ from an unjust person? (1) If there would be no difference, that shows we only think of justice as good as a means. (2) If the just person remains just even though he can get away with being unjust, then that shows that people consider justice to be good.

  9. Glaucon: Justice is good as a means of avoiding suffering injustice. We agree to abide by the rules of morality so that other people don’t harm us, not because its bad to do harm (injustice) to other people

  10. If the Ring of Gyges example is persuasive, it tells us that we think of morality in terms of external rewards. • It does not tell us however that justice really is only good for its rewards. • People could be simply mistaken: they might think justice is only good for its consequences, while really its good for its consequences and for its own sake.

  11. We need to first discover what justice is • Socrates: Justice is easier to discover in a city, then in an individual, so lets discover what justice is in a city first, then we can better see how justice applies to individuals. • So they begin to discuss what an ideal city would be like

  12. How should the work be divided in the city? People should perform only one task. Why?

  13. People have different natural talents. A well run city will have each person do what they are by nature best suited for. • If you work at one task regularly you will get better at that task

  14. 372a-372c Socrates describes an ideal city. • But Glaucon objects.

  15. The first ideal city lacks luxuries, it is a simple city. • Socrates says while the simple city still strikes him as ideal, it might be useful to look into a wealthy, “feverish,” city.

  16. What new thing do we get with a wealthy, feverish city? • WAR! • We need warriors. • Following the principle of specialization, these warriors need to be those who are best suited for the task, a professional army. • They also need to be trained appropriately.

  17. Warriors need to be trained • Music and gymnastic • Both liberal arts and physical training train the soul • Strict censorship of literary works. Only those works that contribute to the virtues of the guardians (later called auxilliaries)will be allowed.