Reflection on a Wicked World

Sup faithful blog readers of which there are none because I only blog like every month now??!!!!? I just posted my philosophy homework to Blackboard and I showed it to Ellen because she likes philosophy. She liked it a lot I decided to post it here. I went crazy near the end when I realized I was 100 words under, and as a result ended up being 100 words over. So enjoy!

In Plato’s Phaedo, section 70b to 80b, Socrates advocates for the indestructibility of the soul. Cebes begins the deliberation by openly informing Socrates of “men” who are not able to believe what Socrates says about the soul. He relates that they believe that once a person dies, their soul leaves the body and instantly “[dissolves]” and “is destroyed.” However, Socrates counters this by providing examples of opposites to prove that all things come to be from their contrary: “the weaker comes to be from the stronger, …the swifter from the slower, …and the juster from the more unjust.” Then he offers what becomes the most crucial example: “as sleeping is the opposite of awake,” then the opposite of living is being dead. Therefore, he attests, since life comes to be from death (as justified by his previous examples), then this must mean that the soul is the “life” that he means. I believe that there are many ways in which this may be interpreted and Socrates’ speech is far too ambiguous for there to be only one interpretation. According to Socrates, there are two different types of life: the life that eventually turns into death and the life that arises from death. In order for this to exist as a cycle, then the life that arises from death must be tangible human life. However, it appears that Socrates believes that the soul is this other life that comes to be from death. This is the weaker explanation: where does the soul go? Does it merely wander the earth for the rest of time? Is it possible for it to occupy another being, or is this insensitive? But if one chooses to believe the former explanation, that physical human life arises from death, then it cannot be taken literally else believe that human infants sprout from the graves of the dead. It is, however, the more believable approach to this problem when one takes the more simplistic explanation that as someone dies, many more people are being born. This is the only sort of cycle regarding life and death that can occur, rendering Socrates’ argument invalid.

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