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Saturday, April 16, 2016

Famous Greek Philosophers

Famous Greek Philosophers

The three main Greek philosophers in chronological order as follows.

Socrates, 469-399BCE
Plato, 428-347BCE (Student of Socrates)
Aristotle, 384-322BCE (Student of Plato)

Socrates.
He was a Greek philosopher and the main source of Western thought. He used the “Socratic method” to teach people. It is a form of inquiry and discussion between individuals, based on asking and answering questions to encourage critical thinking and to illuminate ideas. It often involves a discussion in which the defense of one point of view is questioned; one participant may lead another to contradict themself in some way, thus strengthening the inquirer's own point. He used to go to the market place and have discussion with people there. He never wrote down any of his teachings. He taught in the agora and what ever is known about him is because of what his students wrote down about him. Plato being one of them.

Socrates claimed that wisdom was his moral basis. He called himself ignorant and because he was aware of his ignorance he was wise. Socrates stood firm with his ideas and even died for them in the end. Some of the Athenians got mad at Socrates for his beliefs and teachings. They charged him with impiety, not respecting the gods, and corrupting the youth. People thought he was against democracy, and he probably was - he thought the smartest people should make the decisions for everyone
Socrates was given a trial in front of Athenian jury where he was found guilty. He died by drinking a cup of hemlock poison which the guards gave him instead of apologizing for his teachings.

Plato.
Plato’s real name was Aristocles; Plato was just a nickname given to him by his friends, whose original meaning made reference to his broad shoulders.

Plato became an enthusiastic and talented student of Socrates and wrote famous dialogues featuring his teacher verbally wrestling with opponents. he believed in the pre-existence and immortality of the soul, holding that life is nothing more than the imprisonment of the soul i n a body. In addition to the physical world, there is a heavenly realm of greater reality consisting in Forms, Ideals, or Ideas (such as Equality, Justice, Humanity, and so on).

As his crowning achievement: He wrote a famous treatise (The Republic) on the ideal society, in which he expressed the thought that a philosopher, of all people, should be king. He wrote 20 books, with Socrates as the main character.

 he founded a school of learning which he called the Academy. Plato's school is often described at the first European university. Its curriculum offered subjects including astronomy, biology, mathematics, political theory, and philosophy.

Aristotle.
Aristotle was Plato's best student. He went on to become the very well-paid tutor of Alexander the Great — probably the highest paid philosopher in history. Aristotle started his own philosophical school when he was 50 years old. Although he lived only ten more years, he produced nearly a thousand books and pamphlets, only a few of which have survived.

Aristotle  was called a peripatetic philosopher (peripateo ="to walk around") because he liked to lecture to his students while taking a walk.

A key theme in Aristotle's thought is that happiness is the goal of life. Aristotle was a good deal less other-worldly than Plato. He voluntarily went into exile from Athens when conditions became a bit politically dangerous for him, in his words, "lest Athens sin twice against philosophy."

The founder of logical theory, Aristotle believed that the greatest human endeavor is the use of reason in theoretical activity. One of his best known ideas was his conception of "The Golden Mean" — "avoid extremes," the counsel of moderation in all things.

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