Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Verdict of Socrates

Conner Lewis, World History 4                                                                                      2/18/15
Thoughts and Reflections On: Socrates - The Apology
Book by Plato

The Verdict of Socrates

          The pitiful appeals which Socrates refuses to employ are the use of friends and family to sway the jury to vote not guilty. He refuses to bring in his sons as well as his friends and students to cause the jury to vote purely based on pity and empathy. He refuses to do this because he thinks it is below him, while also believing that the jury is not supposed to hand out freedom as a favor, but rather be convinced through argument and debate to vote not guilty on the final verdict. Socrates believes that even if found guilty however, due to his free service to the people and state of Athens, he should receive free food as well a personal maintenance from the state. He states this is because he has only worked for the betterment of the state itself. This is also the final proof that shows Socrates will not do what he believes is wrong because he states that deciding a penalty which he knows is detrimental to himself would show that he does things even if he knows it is wrong, and rather because he will
never purposefully harm someone, he will not willingly choose to harm himself. Socrates then goes on to suggest imprisonment, a fine which results in imprisonment if not paid, and banishment. He suggests these to show how detrimental they would be to him, which is why he will not suggest them, as well as to allow him to show why none of these would stop him or be useful. Imprisonment or a fine would just result in him being locked in a cell, banishment would result in him being banished from the next city, and the next, and living a quiet life is impossible for him as he has been ordered by God to discuss and learn. Socrates also states that should he be silenced, others like him shall rise up to question Athens once more, until the accusers and people of Athens make themselves as good as they can, for until then people shall always question their actions and motives. Socrates believes that death is a good thing because it harbors only two possibilities. One is that of a dreamless and calm sleep which Socrates believes to be tranquil and calm, and the other is the kind discussed as the afterlife, and Socrates states he would die ten times to meet the people and heroes of old, and to continue his search for the wise there as well.

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