One of the most revered and celebrated philosophers in history, Plato helped lay the foundation of modern philosophy in the western world. Three of his works, the Euthypro, the apology and the republic not only encapsulate his ability as a philosopher, but also offer an insight into his life as a man. While I was reading Plato’s ideas it occurred to me that there is a central notion which runs throughout all his pieces. One of education and how philosophers are authoritative voices regarding wisdom and its implementation. This paper will engage all three texts in an effort to provide new insight into this facet and the philosophical field.
I find it ironical that despite being teacher and student Socrates and Plato share one key difference in their philosophical beliefs. That while Socrates believes that he is the most knowledgeable since he knows nothing, Plato in this very subject believes himself to be the authority since he assumes nothing and knows everything. Even though does not voice his belief in his works it is clear to me from reading his assessment of philosophers, that he truly believes himself to be at least wiser than those he seeks to teach. Allowing himself to be dwarf only by Socrates, perhaps because of his reverence for his master.
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