Socraric Method

Socraric Method The Socratic Method of philosophy is basically a series of question leading to an answer. In order for this method to work though, two conditions must be met. The first one is that the interlocutor has to say what he believes. The second is that the answers must be kept short. Here is a classic example of how this method works. It is a dialogue between Socrates and Euthyphro.

The thesis is “What is dear to the gods is pious, what is not is impious.” Next Socrates gets Euthyphro to agree to the following points. The first point is that piety and impiety are opposite. The next point is that the gods are in a state of discord. The next is that they are in discord over what is just and what is unjust. They have no set unit to measure it by. The next point is that the different gods consider different things to be just and unjust.

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From there he goes on to agree that some things are both just and unjust. Finally, he agrees that some things can be both god loved and god hated. The same things would then be both pious and impious according to the argument above. The way that this argument relates to the rest of the Euthyphro starts back at the beginning of the story. Socrates sees Euthyphro standing by the courthouse and naturally asks why he is there.

Euthyphro explains that he is the prosecutor in a murder trial. It turns out that it is his father that he is prosecuting for the murder of a murderer. He laments to Socrates that his family and friends believe that his doing this is impious, but he believes that they are mistaken and this reveals their ignorance of piety. Since Socrates is Socrates, this naturally leads him to ask just exactly what piety is. This argument is the first of three arguments in the Euthyphro that try to answer the question of what exactly piety is.

The next arguments are that the pious are what all the gods love, and the opposite, what all the gods hate, is the impious. The third argument is that piety is part of justice, but it is a weak argument and it really never gets fully explained. Philosophy Essays.


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