Philosophical Views


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Philosophy Views of Aristotle, Plato, Socrates. PHI/105

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  • Assignment on philosophical views of Aristotle, Plato and Socrates. By Amy Shubert
  • Aristotle was the father in the field of logic. He was the first to develop a formal system of reasoning. Aristotle rejected Plato’s Theory of Forms and made way for his empirical approach which emphasizes observation first and abstract reasoning second. Aristotle believed the best way to understand why things are the way they are is to understand what purpose they serve. Aristotle was the most famous of Plato’s students. Aristotle viewed woman as inferior by nature. “Women are defective by nature” because they cannot reproduce semen which contains a full human being. When a man and a woman have intercourse, the man supplies the substance of a human being (the soul, i.e. the form), the woman only the nourishment (the matter). According to Aristotle, man takes charge over the woman. He also felt that slavery is natural because some people are designed to be slaves.
  • Plato was a student of Socrates. He left many writings, his most famous being The Republic. He had many idea forms. One of his idea forms was his vision of Government, he didn’t trust the democracy. Plato believed the soul was made up of three parts; natural desires, will and reason. These three parts must be balanced in order to live a fulfilled life. Although it seemed that Plato’s wanted a fairer deal for woman (i.e. she is no longer owned by her husband), he also ascribed the inferior status of woman. “It is only males who are created directly by the gods and are given souls. Those who live rightly return to the stars, but those who are ‘cowards or [lead unrighteous lives] may with reason be supposed to have changed into the nature of women in the second generation’. This downward progress may continue through successive reincarnations unless reversed. In this situation, obviously it is only men who are complete human beings and can hope for ultimate fulfillment; the best a woman can hope for is to become a man” (Plato, Timaeus 90e).
  • Socrates did not leave any writing. We are able to learn of his ways through those he taught. Socrates believed that everyone had virtue and that bad behavior was a result of ignorance. Plato was one of Socrates most famous students. In Plato’s, Republic, Socrates argues that women are as capable as men in pursuit of their endeavors. Socrates seemed to push equality for woman.
  • Aristotle, Plato and Socrates are the foundation of the way we inquire about knowledge. There is much to be compared and contrasted between these three great philosophers. The differences between them are to be expected with Aristotle being the great thinker and developer of his own thoughts on psychology. For Socrates, Plato and Aristotle justice and truth play an important part in an individuals role in society. In Greek philosophy, when referring to the ideal person, one thing remains the same, that a man is used for the model. Aristotle was opposed to woman having a role in politics. Plato and Socrates seemed more open to woman having a place in politics and philosophy. I believe that all three philosophers have great knowledge to stir up questions about oneself and the life we live. There opinions on woman and slavery do make me second guess their believes and thinking as the truth. I find it difficult to understand how such smart men would find it acceptable to view woman as inferior. Overall, much knowledge can be obtained from Aristotle, Plato and Socrates. References:
  • Philosophical Views

    1. 1. Amy Shubert<br />PHI/105<br />July 27, 2011<br />Philosophical Views<br />Aristotle<br />Plato <br />Socrates<br />
    2. 2. Aristotle Key Ideas<br />*Humans seek to flourish<br />*Wrote on metaphysics, government, mathematics and natural science<br />*Relied on pure reason, not experiment, to come to a conclusion. <br />*Form and Matter were one<br />*Argued that knowledge comes from experience<br />"Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives - choice, not chance, determines your destiny." — Aristotle<br />Aristotle<br />(384 BC – 322 BC)<br />"Happiness depends upon ourselves." — Aristotle<br />
    3. 3. *View toward woman was ambivalent, he advocated a fairer deal for woman<br />*Argued that reality is known only through the mind<br />*A higher world exist, a world of ideas or forms<br />*To grasp the Forms is to grasp the ultimate truth<br />Plato<br />(429–347 BC)<br />“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” – Plato<br />Plato’s Key Ideas<br />"I'm trying to think, don't confuse me with facts." — Plato<br />
    4. 4. Socrates Key Ideas<br />*Know Thyself<br />*Obsessed with truth and how to get to it<br />*Placed value on not just knowledge but how we KNOW knowledge<br />*He asked questions to his students so they could learn what they didn’t know<br />*Students use deductive reasoning to see things for themselves<br />"The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing." — Socrates<br />Socrates<br />(469–399 BC)<br />
    5. 5. Conclusion<br />Philosophy means "Lover of Wisdom" in ancient Greek<br />