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Ethics Came From Inner Self Knowledge

Parent Category: Philosophy Category: Logic

In modern times many would like to think that religion is the root and key to ethics.  Not necessarily so.  Religion can have a profound effect.  But, to what kind of ethics?  Perhaps you should read this short excerpt about Socrates. 

The Greek philosopher Socrates (470-399 BC was a citizen of Athens, which had no public universities at that time. Socrates roamed the streets and central markets engaging crowds of young people in philosophical conversation and debate. He called these forums “thinking shops.” Socrates’ rhetorical style of posing questions to every student’s answer focused on the critical reasoning behind their claim of knowledge and/or virtue.

This deliberate, logical questioning method was intended to explore the core personal values of the students. As such, it offered a refreshing alternative to the then traditional one-way lecture method of teaching. Socrates’ view was that the moral core values of virtue, justice and piety affect more than just religion but also one’s relationship with peers and democratic civilization as a whole.

The freedom of thought and expression that Socrates nurtured promoted individual self-knowledge and intellectual independence. He believed that vice arises from ignorance but that truth, citizenship participation and virtue are promoted by knowledge. Knowledge and virtue were acquired not only through substantive lecture but also through questioning the students' rational basis for their philosophical positions. Answers were explored deeply for meaning and ethical implications. Socrates believed that this thinking shop promoted knowledge and core ethical values while serving to reinforce and reaffirm the virtues found within us all. Socrates referred to this as a person’s “inner voice” and stressed that above all else, a person should “know thyself.

Remember that Knowledge promotes ethics.  Ignorance promotes vice.

What do you think?

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Quotes & Facts

"A government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have." -- Thomas Jefferson

If it is a fact, then it can't be known as "politically incorrect"

     "To be ignorant of what happened before you were born is to be ever a child. For what is man's lifetime unless the memory of past events is woven with those of earlier times?"     -- Marcus Tullius Cicero

     “Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclination, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”
  —John Adams

"Who controls the past controls the future.....
Who controls the present controls the past."
-- O'Brien in  Nineteen Eighty-Four
from the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell


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