Gorgias Discussion Week #6

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Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by Mrs. Martin on Sat Feb 04, 2017 3:29 pm

"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?
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Elijah's Answer

Post by egrabrick on Sat Feb 04, 2017 7:22 pm

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?


The first thing that stood out to me about this quote was "in their case." In whose case? So I looked in the book, and found the quote at the bottom of page 45. "You see, the issues we're disagreeing about are in fact hardly trivial: I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." So, from looking at the context of the quote, we can see that "in their case" means in the case of the issues we're disagreeing about. Thus, the quote could be rewritten as "I'd almost go so far as to say that in the case of the issues we're disagreeing about, there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy. In this section of the book, Socrates and Plato are disagreeing about what makes a man happy versus what makes a man unhappy.

Sorry if I spent a little too long on context, but it seems important to this quote... Very Happy

Now on to the answer... I would say I agree with the quote, as long as the knowledge is correct. Since in this case they are disagreeing about what it means to be happy and what it means to be unhappy, the only thing that could really add to their discussion would be additional knowledge of what it means to be happy. Now, if "in their case" was omitted from the quote, I would disagree, because, in general, there are many things that are more important than knowing what makes someone happy. For example, it is more important to have a personal relationship with Jesus than to know what makes people happy.
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Knowledge is power

Post by LivvyT on Mon Feb 06, 2017 3:10 pm

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?

My knee jerk reaction to this quote without going back and reading through the assigned section again is that i'm not sure whether I agree or not. I no not think that being knowledgeable defines whether you are a happy person or not . I think knowledge can aid in happiness, or happiness can be the result of knowledge, but i do not believe that in order for someone to be happy they must be knowledgeable. A commonly used saying is "Ignorance is bliss" Which means that the less a person knows about an issue the better (This is how I perceive it anyway.) But i would like to examine the flip side of the coin. Lets say Isis is planning an attack on the USA. If the US military caught wind of this plan, they can either create a effective plan of defence, launch a counter attack, or stop the attack by going on the offensive. By gaining this "Knowledge" they are given options, which in the end leads to happiness because they can divert tragedy. Had they not gained this 'knowledge" many people could have been killed, an unhappy result.
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by JACK ATTACK on Tue Feb 07, 2017 12:25 pm

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?


Well I would look at this from a logical perspective. First, can people with great knowledge be happy? I would say yes. Can an ignorant person have happiness? Again, yes. So from my point of view, you don't need knowledge to be happy, and vice versa. Even though the source of your joy might be misguided or warped, it is still possible to have a form of happiness. Lets take terrorists for example. What is a terrorist exactly? Well they in this most commonly Muslims, who are obeying their own law. Yes. There is not such thing as a peaceful Muslim, if they are truly following what their koran tells them do, they are essentially terrorists. But anyways my point is that they think that what they do is good. And they think it brings them happiness. That is obviously misguided happiness but it is happiness all the same. For this reason I believe they would fall under the ignorant category of the question. Because they don't know the truth that is God and his son Jesus Christ. That you can only achieve true everlasting joy when you are following God and be holy in his sight. Holiness brings happiness. They obviously don't know or care about that. So in the end I disagree with this statement because however misguided a persons source of joy/happiness may be, they do not have to have knowledge to have happiness, and vice versa. Hope that made sense Very Happy
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by sarahm on Tue Feb 07, 2017 3:19 pm

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?

I would have to disagree with this statement. I think that knowledgeable people can be happy and I think that ignorant people can be happy. I think that it could also go the other way around. A knowledgeable person can be unhappy as well as can an ignorant person. Take for example someone who went through years of college education to get what they thought was their dream job. They have gained tons of knowledge from their education but when they finally finish school and find a job, they hate it. It doesn't turn out what they thought it would be and they are not happy. On the other hand, young children are probably some of the happiest people. They are also some of the most ignorant. They simply just don't know a whole lot about anything, but they are definitely happy.

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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by TheBatman on Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:45 am

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?
I'd have to disagree here. First, what is Socrates saying? I believe he is making two assumptions. First, that in the cases of certain people, there is nothing better than knowledge for them. Second, that the knowledge that these certain people have is the knowledge of how to be happy, which is why that knowledge is admirable in the first place.

I would disagree with both these assumptions. Let's start with the second, as it is the basis for the first. There is one major problem with this argument. Knowledge of what it is to be happy doesn't mean you are happy. I know from the Bible what it is to live like Christ. Does that mean I always do? No. Knowing and doing are very different things. Thus, Socrates assumption that knowing what it is to be happy leads to happiness is false.

This leads us to why the second premise is false. Socrates presupposes that knowledge is only based around knowing what is happy. He says that knowledge, as a category (a genus for you career CCers Very Happy ), boils down to knowledge about happiness, and is thus the best thing. He provides no support for this leap. The fact that knowledge is not limited to knowing about happiness should be obvious. We can have knowledge about salvation, sports, or how to cook breakfast. Those things don't boil down to happiness, they are separate branches (species) of knowledge.

Not only are Socrates' premises both entirely false, but even if you took his statement as true, I believe you would still have to disagree. Why? Like what has been talked about a lot on this discussion board, simply knowing something and actually putting it into practice are two different things. I can know how to be saved and still not get saved. Which is more admirable then? The mental assent and knowledge, or the action of accepting Christ? Knowledge is not the most admirable thing for anyone in my opinion.
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by LivvyT on Wed Feb 08, 2017 5:24 pm

JACK ATTACK wrote:
Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?


Well I would look at this from a logical perspective. First, can people with great knowledge be happy? I would say yes. Can an ignorant person have happiness? Again, yes.  So from my point of view, you don't need knowledge to be happy, and vice versa. Even though the source of your joy might be misguided or warped, it is still possible to have a form of happiness. Lets take terrorists for example. What is a terrorist exactly? Well they in this most commonly Muslims, who are obeying their own law. Yes. There is not such thing as a peaceful Muslim, if they are truly following what their koran tells them do, they are essentially terrorists. But anyways my point is that they think that what they do is good. And they think it brings them happiness. That is obviously misguided happiness but it is happiness all the same. For this reason I believe they would fall under the ignorant category of the question. Because they don't know the truth that is God and his son Jesus Christ. That you can only achieve true everlasting joy when you are following God and be holy in his sight. Holiness brings happiness. They obviously don't know or care about that. So in the end I disagree with this statement because however misguided a persons source of joy/happiness may be, they do not have to have knowledge to have happiness, and vice versa. Hope that made sense Very Happy  

Very interesting perspective Jack! I would have to say i agree to an extent. Are you saying happiness is Relative?
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Response to LivvyT's response to me

Post by JACK ATTACK on Wed Feb 08, 2017 9:13 pm

Very interesting perspective Jack! I would have to say i agree to an extent. Are you saying happiness is Relative? [/quote]

In a way, yes. I believe that happiness depends on the individual. Whether it the source of it like I said is warped or true and pure is a different matter. I believe that we can achieve true and full happiness when we are in God's will. When you are outside of that will, things dont last. But still, I think that people can have happiness when they are outside of God's will, if they didn't, then we would not be tempted to sin. Thats the thing about sin. It has a nice and pretty false front, but once you actually do it, you are in a worse place than you were before. Its the source of the happiness that determines its purity and fullness. But everyone can still have some form of it. Hope that answers your question Very Happy
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Context is important!

Post by egrabrick on Thu Feb 09, 2017 10:37 am

After reading many of the answers to this week's question, one thing stood out to me. Although most of the answers use sound logic, they take the quote out of context, which can be dangerous. Some examples of the importance of context can be found by looking at cults. Many cults have been started by taking Bible verses out of context and interpreting them to mean something different than what they are intended to mean. I would challenge everyone to go back and reread last week's passage in Gorgias, and then answer the question again while paying attention to context. With some quotes context might be less important, but since this quote says "in their case," context is especially important to know whose case the quote is intended to refer to.
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Response to egrabrick

Post by TheBatman on Thu Feb 09, 2017 12:07 pm

egrabrick wrote:
After reading many of the answers to this week's question, one thing stood out to me. Although most of the answers use sound logic, they take the quote out of context, which can be dangerous. Some examples of the importance of context can be found by looking at cults. Many cults have been started by taking Bible verses out of context and interpreting them to mean something different than what they are intended to mean. I would challenge everyone to go back and reread last week's passage in Gorgias, and then answer the question again while paying attention to context. With some quotes context might be less important, but since this quote says "in their case," context is especially important to know whose case the quote is intended to refer to.

Great point Elijah! Context is indeed key critical in this quote. However, I did look back at this context (because I was very intrigued by your post), and from my interpretation, I feel like most answers still apply.

First things first is my interpretation of the context. Socrates and Polus are discussing whether people with power are actually satisfied and happy. This leads them into the idea of whether criminals are happy or not. Thus, the "in their case" refers directly to the criminals, and indirectly to the people with power that Socrates and Polus are generally discussing.

Now, let's have a little fun Very Happy To the Square of Opposition!
affraid
Remember, there are two opposing relationships on the square. We're dealing with the two contradictory statements here: "Some S is P" and "No S is P." Socrates is making an argument with the "Some." He's saying that for some people, there is nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance. He supports this with the premise that knowledge boils down to knowledge about happiness.

Personally, when I posted, I attacked both these premises. I said that in "No" case are these premises true. Even for a criminal, knowledge isn't limited to knowing about happiness, and even for a criminal, there are more admirable things than knowledge (how about confessing, lol Smile ). In my opinion, most of the posts did the same thing. It seems to me that people disagree with the fundamental presupposition that there are even some people for which knowledge is the most admirable thing. Now, I obviously can't speak for everyone else, but from the outside looking in, that's what it seems like.

To make this a lot simpler, think about debate. In debate, we have the Claim, Warrant, and Impact. In the case of this board, it seems as if people are attacking the specific warrant and saying that the warrants don't work at all. In logic terms, that's the "No" statement.

At least, that's what I did Very Happy I don't know if everyone else kept the context in mind. The reason I'm posting this, however, is because I still think a majority of the answers seem like they apply.

Bravo for looking this up Elijah, it was an amazing point. Let's keep this point going everyone! I'm very interested to hear what everyone has to say in regards to the context.
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by egrabrick on Thu Feb 09, 2017 12:44 pm

TheBatman wrote:Great point Elijah! Context is indeed key critical in this quote. However, I did look back at this context (because I was very intrigued by your post), and from my interpretation, I feel like most answers still apply.

First things first is my interpretation of the context. Socrates and Polus are discussing whether people with power are actually satisfied and happy. This leads them into the idea of whether criminals are happy or not. Thus, the "in their case" refers directly to the criminals, and indirectly to the people with power that Socrates and Polus are generally discussing.

Now, let's have a little fun Very Happy To the Square of Opposition!
affraid
Remember, there are two opposing relationships on the square. We're dealing with the two contradictory statements here: "Some S is P" and "No S is P." Socrates is making an argument with the "Some." He's saying that for some people, there is nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance. He supports this with the premise that knowledge boils down to knowledge about happiness.

Personally, when I posted, I attacked both these premises. I said that in "No" case are these premises true. Even for a criminal, knowledge isn't limited to knowing about happiness, and even for a criminal, there are more admirable things than knowledge (how about confessing, lol Smile ). In my opinion, most of the posts did the same thing. It seems to me that people disagree with the fundamental presupposition that there are even some people for which knowledge is the most admirable thing. Now, I obviously can't speak for everyone else, but from the outside looking in, that's what it seems like.

To make this a lot simpler, think about debate. In debate, we have the Claim, Warrant, and Impact. In the case of this board, it seems as if people are attacking the specific warrant and saying that the warrants don't work at all. In logic terms, that's the "No" statement.

At least, that's what I did Very Happy I don't know if everyone else kept the context in mind. The reason I'm posting this, however, is because I still think a majority of the answers seem like they apply.

Bravo for looking this up Elijah, it was an amazing point. Let's keep this point going everyone! I'm very interested to hear what everyone has to say in regards to the context.

Good points! However, from my interpretation, "in their case" refers directly to the issues they're talking about, and not criminals... It's very interesting how different people can look at the same passage and interpret it in two quite different ways. I guess I can kind of see where you're coming from, though...

By the way, your logic seems sound to me, I just disagree with your premises.

Just in case anyone can't find it, here's the quote we're looking at with a little more context. (It's on pg. 45 in the book, at the bottom of the page.)

"You see, the issues we're disagreeing about are in fact hardly trivial: I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy."

It'd be very interesting to see what everyone else interprets "in their case" to refer to.
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Response to egrabrick

Post by TheBatman on Thu Feb 09, 2017 1:14 pm

egrabrick wrote:Good points! However, from my interpretation, "in their case" refers directly to the issues they're talking about, and not criminals... It's very interesting how different people can look at the same passage and interpret it in two quite different ways. I guess I can kind of see where you're coming from, though...

By the way, your logic seems sound to me, I just disagree with your premises.

Just in case anyone can't find it, here's the quote we're looking at with a little more context. (It's on pg. 45 in the book, at the bottom of the page.)

"You see, the issues we're disagreeing about are in fact hardly trivial: I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy."

It'd be very interesting to see what everyone else interprets "in their case" to refer to.

I thought we might disagree on this Very Happy

Let me share more of a reason for why I think the context is what it is.

Firstly, they've been talking about people with power and criminals for the last few passages. However, Socrates divulges into talking about the different kinds of refutation for a bit, and then, in the passage we're referring to, comes immediately back to the criminals discussion. This is evident if we turn the page and look at the context after the quote. Socrates takes his "knowledge" point and continues to discuss criminals and their happiness immediately in the next paragraph. This leads me to conclude that the "their" are the criminals, not the issues.

Secondly, I think its kinda logical. There are two sets of "issues" they could be disagreeing about. The first are the criminals/people with power and their happiness. If that's the case, then we're basically saying the same thing Very Happy . The second are the different types of refutation. Let's remember that refutation is not a living, thinking thing. It wouldn't make much sense, in my opinion, to say that refutation has knowledge or can be happy. We wouldn't say "Four point refutation is very knowledgeable" or, "Four point refutation is very happy today." tongue Knowledge and happiness refer to people, not trains of thought.

That's what led me to interpret the context the way I did.

Again, I'm very interested to hear your or anyone else's thoughts on the context. I think it'd be super enlightening!
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by egrabrick on Thu Feb 09, 2017 2:04 pm

TheBatman wrote:I thought we might disagree on this Very Happy

Let me share more of a reason for why I think the context is what it is.

Firstly, they've been talking about people with power and criminals for the last few passages. However, Socrates divulges into talking about the different kinds of refutation for a bit, and then, in the passage we're referring to, comes immediately back to the criminals discussion. This is evident if we turn the page and look at the context after the quote. Socrates takes his "knowledge" point and continues to discuss criminals and their happiness immediately in the next paragraph. This leads me to conclude that the "their" are the criminals, not the issues.

Secondly, I think its kinda logical. There are two sets of "issues" they could be disagreeing about. The first are the criminals/people with power and their happiness. If that's the case, then we're basically saying the same thing  Very Happy . The second are the different types of refutation. Let's remember that refutation is not a living, thinking thing. It wouldn't make much sense, in my opinion, to say that refutation has knowledge or can be happy. We wouldn't say "Four point refutation is very knowledgeable" or, "Four point refutation is very happy today."  tongue  Knowledge and happiness refer to people, not trains of thought.

That's what led me to interpret the context the way I did.

Again, I'm very interested to hear your or anyone else's thoughts on the context. I think it'd be super enlightening!

Personally, I think they're disagreeing about what makes a person in general happy, not specifically criminals. To try to make it clear why I interpret it how I do, I'll go through a detailed analysis of the quote.

"You see, the issues we're disagreeing about are in fact hardly trivial: I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy."

I'll start with the first part of the quote. "You see, the issues we're disagreeing about." I think we can agree that they're disagreeing about what makes some people happy. I think they're disagreeing about what makes everyone happy, especially rulers (particularly Archelaus) and criminals. From what I can tell, you think this refers to what makes criminals happy.

"are hardly trivial." I think this simply means that they're disagreeing about important issues.

"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case." This is the main thing we disagree about. From my interpretation, this refers to the issues they're disagreeing about, which I already mentioned.

"there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance." Socrates is saying that, referring to the issues they're disagreeing about, the best thing is knowledge and the worst thing is lack of knowledge.

"since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." I think this is saying that knowledge, in the case of the issues they're disagreeing about (what makes someone happy), would be knowledge about happiness, since that would be the only knowledge that could be used without changing the topic.

Overall, I think this quote is saying that knowledge of what makes someone happy is the most important thing that could benefit their disagreement.
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Response to egrabrick

Post by TheBatman on Thu Feb 09, 2017 2:41 pm

[quote="egrabrick"]
TheBatman wrote:Personally, I think they're disagreeing about what makes a person in general happy, not specifically criminals. To try to make it clear why I interpret it how I do, I'll go through a detailed analysis of the quote.

"You see, the issues we're disagreeing about are in fact hardly trivial: I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy."

I'll start with the first part of the quote. "You see, the issues we're disagreeing about." I think we can agree that they're disagreeing about what makes some people happy. I think they're disagreeing about what makes everyone happy, especially rulers (particularly Archelaus) and criminals. From what I can tell, you think this refers to what makes criminals happy.

"are hardly trivial." I think this simply means that they're disagreeing about important issues.

"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case." This is the main thing we disagree about. From my interpretation, this refers to the issues they're disagreeing about, which I already mentioned.

"there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance." Socrates is saying that, referring to the issues they're disagreeing about, the best thing is knowledge and the worst thing is lack of knowledge.

"since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." I think this is saying that knowledge, in the case of the issues they're disagreeing about (what makes someone happy), would be knowledge about happiness, since that would be the only knowledge that could be used without changing the topic.

Overall, I think this quote is saying that knowledge of what makes someone happy is the most important thing that could benefit their disagreement.
I'm still a little confused on what specifically you're referring to, but I'll do my best to respond Very Happy

Overall, I think the main point of contention here is what issues they are disagreeing about (the word "their"). You're saying they disagree about what makes some people happy, I'm saying they disagree in the context of people with power and criminals. Two things here. First, regardless of which view is right, the original points I made still stand (about attacking warrants.) This is kinda non-unique. You're saying they disagree about "some people", I'm saying those "some people" are criminals and people with power. Regardless, the logic behind attacking premises/warrants, as was done in many answers, is the same. Second, here are some previous quotes from the book talking about the disagreement in the dialogue (though I think we're saying the same thing tongue ):

1) People with power (conclusion of Socrates on this point)
"I was right, then, when I said that someone might do what he thinks it's est for him to do in his community, but still fail to have a great deal of power and fail to do what he wants." - 468d

2) Criminals (Polus intro to his Archelaus example)
"Well, I don't need ancient history to help me prove you wrong, Socrates: there's enough counter-evidence from the very recent past for me to show that happiness and wrongdoing commonly go together." - 470c/d

3) Post-quote (this is what Socrates says right after he makes the statement in question)
"Let's start with the question facing us, which is the crux of our present discussion. You think it's possible for someone to be happy in spite of the fact that he does wrong and is an immoral person, and you cite the case of Archelaus who is, in your opinion, an immoral, but happy, person. Is that a fair representation of your view?" - 472d

Now we have to get into linguistics from the context. Based on the fact that Socrates introduces his statement with a colon, previously was talking about disagreements over the kinds of refutation (Polus's easy dismissal of his type of argumentation, hence the trivial part), and then follows his statement with an immediate paragraph about criminals/wrongdoers/people with power, I'd have to say the "their" is referencing the people they've been discussing for a couple pages now. Like I said before, issues don't have knowledge and issues don't have emotions.

However, I do see where you're coming from. I just believe that the language and context lends itself to be talking about people, not issues. If they're truly disagreeing about what makes someone happy/unhappy (as we both agree), then it makes sense for them to be talking about those people when they reference happiness again. Regardless, I still think the answers that were given already fall under understanding knowledge and happiness in regards to the question. Thanks for keeping the discussion alive Very Happy
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by egrabrick on Thu Feb 09, 2017 2:53 pm

TheBatman wrote:I'm still a little confused on what specifically you're referring to, but I'll do my best to respond Very Happy

Overall, I think the main point of contention here is what issues they are disagreeing about (the word "their"). You're saying they disagree about what makes some people happy, I'm saying they disagree in the context of people with power and criminals. Two things here. First, regardless of which view is right, the original points I made still stand (about attacking warrants.) This is kinda non-unique. You're saying they disagree about "some people", I'm saying those "some people" are criminals and people with power. Regardless, the logic behind attacking premises/warrants, as was done in many answers, is the same. Second, here are some previous quotes from the book talking about the disagreement in the dialogue (though I think we're saying the same thing tongue ):

1) People with power (conclusion of Socrates on this point)
"I was right, then, when I said that someone might do what he thinks it's est for him to do in his community, but still fail to have a great deal of power and fail to do what he wants." - 468d

2) Criminals (Polus intro to his Archelaus example)
"Well, I don't need ancient history to help me prove you wrong, Socrates: there's enough counter-evidence from the very recent past for me to show that happiness and wrongdoing commonly go together." - 470c/d

3) Post-quote (this is what Socrates says right after he makes the statement in question)
"Let's start with the question facing us, which is the crux of our present discussion. You think it's possible for someone to be happy in spite of  the fact that he does wrong and is an immoral person, and you cite the case of Archelaus who is, in your opinion, an immoral, but happy, person. Is that a fair representation of your view?" - 472d

Now we have to get into linguistics from the context. Based on the fact that Socrates introduces his statement with a colon, previously was talking about disagreements over the kinds of refutation (Polus's easy dismissal of his type of argumentation, hence the trivial part), and then follows his statement with an immediate paragraph about criminals/wrongdoers/people with power, I'd have to say the "their" is referencing the people they've been discussing for a couple pages now. Like I said before, issues don't have knowledge and issues don't have emotions.

However, I do see where you're coming from. I just believe that the language and context lends itself to be talking about people, not issues. If they're truly disagreeing about what makes someone happy/unhappy (as we both agree), then it makes sense for them to be talking about those people when they reference happiness again. Regardless, I still think the answers that were given already fall under understanding knowledge and happiness in regards to the question. Thanks for keeping the discussion alive Very Happy

Well, I think we'll just have to agree to disagree on this issue...

To try to get a little more insight into what Socrates intended to mean, I did a little research to try to find a different translation. Here's one translation I found, just in case it helps... I underlined the part of the quote we've been discussing, but included a little more context. (section 472c)

"[472c] ...towards the matter of our discussion, whatever it may be; nor have you either, I conceive, unless I act alone as your one witness, and you have nothing to do with all these others. Well now, this is one mode of refutation, as you and many other people understand it; but there is also another which I on my side understand. Let us therefore compare them with each other and consider if there is a difference between them. For indeed the points which we have at issue are by no means of slight importance: rather, one might say, they are matters on which it is most honorable to have knowledge, and most disgraceful to lack it; for in sum they involve our knowing or not knowing who is happy and who is not. To start at once..."
-http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0178%3Atext%3DGorg.%3Asection%3D472c
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Response to egrabick's and TheBatman's posts

Post by JACK ATTACK on Thu Feb 09, 2017 3:32 pm

First off I would like to say thank you to Elijah and Eli for keeping this discussion going and expressing their points of view! It as been very interesting to watch! But if you don't mind I would like to interject. I would to bring up a few key points I find are necessary to take into account in this discussion:

I would like to look at what exactly our assignment was To quote it:

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?

I believe that we were supposed to compare whether knowledge or happiness are mutually exclusive, meaning can they exist at the same time? And the same with ignorance and happiness. I do not believe that the context changes that fact. It might be interesting, but it does not change in my opinion, based on what I have seen in your guys posts, the point of the discussion question. In the back and forth banter that leads up to this quote (in the book) Socrates and Polus are discussing first: whether a criminal is bound to be unhappy, and second: if the guilt of being a criminal will make him more unhappy than he was before. I believe that this lines up with exactly what the other posts were talking about. are knowledge and ignorance mutually exclusive, or can they exist at the same time. So when Socrates finally states it in this quotes, the "in their case" is referring to criminals. That is what the book states, so I believe we can take that as the context. Like I said before, it does not change the meaning of the question. Can people have the knowledge of what they are doing is wrong and still be happy? And can someone be ignorant of what they are doing and still be happy? That I believe is the main question and it does not change the assignment for the forum discussion. Context does matter, but in this case it changes nothing. Hope all that makes sense! Very Happy
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by egrabrick on Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:03 pm

JACK ATTACK wrote:First off I would like to say thank you to Elijah and Eli for keeping this discussion going and expressing their points of view! It as been very interesting to watch! But if you don't mind I would like to interject. I would to bring up a few key points I find are necessary to take into account in this discussion:

I would like to look at what exactly our assignment was To quote it:

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?

I believe that we were supposed to compare whether knowledge or happiness are mutually exclusive, meaning can they exist at the same time? And the same with ignorance and happiness. I do not believe that the context changes that fact. It might be interesting, but it does not change in my opinion, based on what I have seen in your guys posts, the point of the discussion question. In the back and forth banter that leads up to this quote (in the book) Socrates and Polus are discussing first: whether a criminal is bound to be unhappy, and second: if the guilt of being a criminal will make him more unhappy than he was before. I believe that this lines up with exactly what the other posts were talking about. are knowledge and ignorance mutually exclusive, or can they exist at the same time. So when Socrates finally states it in this quotes, the "in their case" is referring to criminals. That is what the book states, so I believe we can take that as the context. Like I said before, it does not change the meaning of the question. Can people have the knowledge of what they are doing is wrong and still be happy? And can someone be ignorant of what they are doing and still be happy? That I believe is the main question and it does not change the assignment for the forum discussion. Context does matter, but in this case it changes nothing. Hope all that makes sense! Very Happy

I'm a little confused as to where the idea came from that we're supposed to consider whether knowledge and happiness are mutually exclusive... I feel like I might be missing something obvious, since you and Olivia and Sarah all answered the question as if that was the intent... Any chance someone could help clear it up?

Also, from what I can tell, especially from looking at the other translation in my previous post, "in their case" seems to refer to the issues they're disagreeing about, or, to use the other translation, the points they have at issue...
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by TheBatman on Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:05 pm

egrabrick wrote:Well, I think we'll just have to agree to disagree on this issue...

To try to get a little more insight into what Socrates intended to mean, I did a little research to try to find a different translation. Here's one translation I found, just in case it helps... I underlined the part of the quote we've been discussing, but included a little more context. (section 472c)

"[472c] ...towards the matter of our discussion, whatever it may be; nor have you either, I conceive, unless I act alone as your one witness, and you have nothing to do with all these others. Well now, this is one mode of refutation, as you and many other people understand it; but there is also another which I on my side understand. Let us therefore compare them with each other and consider if there is a difference between them. For indeed the points which we have at issue are by no means of slight importance: rather, one might say, they are matters on which it is most honorable to have knowledge, and most disgraceful to lack it; for in sum they involve our knowing or not knowing who is happy and who is not. To start at once..."
-http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0178%3Atext%3DGorg.%3Asection%3D472c

I think the key with that different translation is the phrase "knowing or not knowing who is happy and who is not." I believe that's ultimately what everyone was answering the question as (I agree with Jack on that).

At the end of the day, everyone's answered with their opinion on the context and knowledge and happiness, which is all the question really wanted in my opinion, and we had a great and fun discussion!

All that to say -

This is one busy homeschooler who should probably be doing other things (like debate prep lol Smile ) right now Very Happy I always enjoy a good discussion though=! Due to time constraints, we'll agree to agree to disagree over this disagreement Very Happy

Thanks everyone! Signing off for now tongue
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Response to egrabick

Post by JACK ATTACK on Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:19 pm

egrabrick wrote: I'm a little confused as to where the idea came from that we're supposed to consider whether knowledge and happiness are mutually exclusive... I feel like I might be missing something obvious, since you and Olivia and Sarah all answered the question as if that was the intent... Any chance someone could help clear it up?

Also, from what I can tell, especially from looking at the other translation in my previous post, "in their case" seems to refer to the issues they're disagreeing about, or, to use the other translation, the points they have at issue...

Okay So I hope my explanation will help you. When i read the quote, I took it as the quote was stating two things. One, that Knowledge brings unhappiness because you know of evil and sin etc. Second, that ignorance brings happiness because you don't know evil things and sin are wrong. In my first post I disagreed with this. Saying that people love their sin and know it is wrong. It happens all the time. But Socrates was expressing his opinion on the relation between knowledge and happiness, and ignorance and happiness. That is why we were asked to say whether we agreed with his view on it or not. That was my thoughts when I first read it. I hope that helps clear things up. Very Happy
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by oprah_wind_fury on Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:20 pm

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?


So I believe Socrates to be saying that knowledge=happiness as ignorance=unhappiness. Surprisingly, I disagree with Socrates. I believe knowledge to be truth, and ignorance to be non-truth. (Truth meaning God's word.) Socrates is saying that truth(the absolute) is equal to happiness(the non-absolute). This doesn't logically make any sense. In order for this statement to be logically true, you would have to say knowledge=Joy. Joy is an absolute. Joy is truth. God is truth, therefore God is Joy. Another thing that stuck out to me was that knowledge is ONLY truth, NOT understanding. Many people know of Christ, but they don't necessarily understand Him. For this I would say that understanding of truth(knowledge) is most important, and that there is nothing more contemptible than not understanding. For this, I actually believe Socrates to be wrong.... Shocked

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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by oprah_wind_fury on Thu Feb 09, 2017 4:24 pm

LivvyT wrote:
Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?

My knee jerk reaction to this quote without going back and reading through the assigned section again is that i'm not sure whether I agree or not. I no not think that being knowledgeable defines whether you are a happy person or not . I think knowledge can aid in happiness, or happiness can be the result of knowledge, but i do not believe that in order for someone to be happy they must be knowledgeable. A commonly used saying is "Ignorance is bliss" Which means that the less a person knows about an issue the better (This is how I perceive it anyway.) But i would like to examine the flip side of the coin. Lets say Isis is planning an attack on the USA. If the US military caught wind of this plan, they can either create a effective plan of defence, launch a counter attack, or stop the attack by going on the offensive. By gaining this "Knowledge" they are given options, which in the end leads to happiness because they can divert tragedy. Had they not gained this 'knowledge" many people could have been killed, an unhappy result.      


Hi Olivia! So, my question for you is do you think that there is a difference between Knowledge, and understanding? CASH ME OUSSIDE HOWBOW DAH? LOL! jkjk!

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Response to JACK ATTACK

Post by egrabrick on Thu Feb 09, 2017 5:17 pm

JACK ATTACK wrote:Okay So I hope my explanation will help you. When i read the quote, I took it as the quote was stating two things. One, that Knowledge brings unhappiness because you know of evil and sin etc. Second, that ignorance brings happiness because you don't know evil things and sin are wrong. In my first post I disagreed with this. Saying that people love their sin and know it is wrong. It happens all the time. But Socrates was expressing his opinion on the relation between knowledge and happiness, and ignorance and happiness. That is why we were asked to say whether we agreed with his view on it or not. That was my thoughts when I first read it. I hope that helps clear things up. Very Happy  

If that's what the question is, I agree with your answer. However, I interpreted the question differently, and so I'm a little confused as to why you interpreted the question how you did... If you're able to explain why you interpreted it how you did, that'd be great. However, I can understand if it's hard to explain. Very Happy
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Re: Gorgias Discussion Week #6

Post by _forsaken_secrets on Thu Feb 09, 2017 9:17 pm

Mrs. Martin wrote:"I'd almost go so far as to say that in their case there's nothing more admirable than knowledge and nothing more contemptible than ignorance, since that would amount to knowledge or ignorance about what it is to be happy and what it is to be unhappy." - Socrates

Do you agree or disagree, and why?

I Disagree. Knowledge does not make a person happy or unhappy. Ignorance does not make a person happy or unhappy. Example: Ignorance is Bliss:
1. A person who usually watches what she eats but who really loves a chocolate cake may not want to know that there are 800 calories in the cake she loves. Her lack of knowledge about the calories in the cake is good because its her favorite cake.
2. A person who doesn't watch the news and is not aware of a dangerous robbery that went on right next door to his house might feel happier not knowing that he was so close to becoming a crime victim.
3. A person who is afraid of ghosts might prefer not to know that someone died in the house in which he is currently living.
4. A person who is not very smart or capable who doesn't realize his limitations might feel better about himself than if he knew that he was falling short of his peers.




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