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“The Apology of Socrates” Plato, in The Apology of Socrates, shows Socrates as saying ‘an unexamined life is not worth living’. What I can infer from the declaration is that a life without reason is not worth living. Thus, I would like to argue that according to Socrates, a life that is worth living is a life that is being examined; and this examination involves both reflection and judgment.
That means an examined life is a life where one has to hold ones own values and beliefs up for examination. Thus, when one is open for examination, the quest for truth continues and one comes to realize the shortcomings in ones own ideals. This makes one reach better insight and knowledge. Now, if the other side of the issue is taken; that is, if one leads ‘an unexamined’ life, one will not be able to open oneself to criticism. As Socrates points out, this leads to the false feeling that one knows everything while, in fact, one knows nothing. This situation is not conducive for achieving wisdom. At this point, it becomes evident that an examined life as envisioned by Socrates is, in reality, the philosophical way of life. To illustrate, according to Socrates, a philosopher’s mission is ‘to search into myself and other men’. That means, the philosophical way of life is a continuous look back into ones own ideals and beliefs by being open to examination. Also, one is supposed to look into the ideals possessed by others like ‘a fair judge’. Thus, an ‘examined life’ leads to identifying ones own lack of wisdom and accepting the real truth. ...
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