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Free «Platos approach » Essay Sample

Social philosophy is known to survey philosophical queries. These queries/questions normally concerns societal matters as well as societal conducts. This branch of philosophy typically deals with scores of subjects of broad diversities. Among them are individualism, and cultural condemnation. It is also characterized by a wider assortment of topics. These include morality, and metaphysics. Others are philosophy of politics, and epistemology. This essay will focus on social philosophy, Plato's theory of soul and, why "Plato's approach should be seen as an anthropological turn in western philosophy.

Social Philosophy

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It (social philosophy) is usually associated with a number of themes. These include societal entities, and also self. The link between the two themes (self and societal entities) is also considered to be a philosophical theme. Another common philosophical theme is individualism. This theme normally attempts to answer several queries regarding human beings. One of the queries is parting. It also attempts to answer queries concerning lack of thereof. Social philosophy normally incorporates several topics of from other academic disciplines which are related to it. These include psychology, and sociology. Another one is the cognitive anthropology. Research shows that these disciplines provide philosophers with two main technical attributes which are considered to be extremely important. The initial one is science which assists in broadening their scope. Another one is experimentation. Philosophers are normally required to ponder on the outcomes of an experiment. It is understood that during experimentation and, studying of science related topics, a philosopher may possibly gain novel information.

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It has well been documented by well known scholars that the majority of the topics related to this form of philosophy (social philosophy) have common characteristics with another branch of philosophy, which is named as political philosophy. These topics include rights, and authority. Another one is the revolution. It should be noted that this philosophy (social) in addition deals with further understated categories of societal interaction. Among them are conflict, and power/authority.

It should also be noted that a branch of philosophy which is named as legal philosophy tackles two main facets. These include formal government, and also formal law. On the other hand, social philosophy addresses informal facets. A perfect example of informal issue is the societal structure of a particular group which was/has been established willingly. A good example of this kind of a group is the power/supremacy of a superstar. Therefore, it is easy to compare legal supremacy with societal/social supremacy. For instance, the legal supremacy of a senator may possibly be compared to the popularity of a college student. This branch of philosophy (social) in addition deals with the dynamics of a particular faction/group within a society. It addresses the manner in which the inhabitants of a society act in unification. The main areas of specialization as much as this topic (the manner in which the inhabitants act) is concerned are crowds, and fads. Other areas include fashions, cults, and more. It should be noted that social philosophy in addition concentrates on topics on societal principles. These principles may possibly link to morality. This is evident specifically concerning the ethical/moral theories which describe it (morality). These theories normally describe morality in terms of what the society advices its inhabitants to engage in or practice. Social philosophy is known to have common characteristics with two main two main topics on social values. These topics are named as morality and ethical values. It has well been documented by well known researchers that a number of people have a tendency of taking social philosophy to imply philosophy which belongs to the society. This nonetheless has a negative impact of bewildering it (social philosophy) with the philosophy of a meticulous/particular civilization (Jacques, 1982).

Plato's Theory of Soul

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Plato is amongst the famous philosophers in history. He is believed to have been born in the period in between 428 BC and 427 BC. It is also believed that Plato died in the era in between 348 BC, and 347BC. He formulated a theory which described the human soul. In this theory, he argued that it (the soul) has 3 fundamental energies. These include Reason, and Appetite. Another one is Emotion. According to him, Reason is ranked first in terms of significance. On the other hand, the other two energies ought to be considered as 'inferior passions'.

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Plato indicated that the soul which is an orderly state is usually ruled by the energy with the highest significance (Reason). This soul has the capability of controlling a person's Emotions. It also has the potential of keeping the Appetites under control. This implies that a soul in Reason state dictates what the inferior energies ought to do. Plato's main philosophic work is termed as "The Republic". The soul theory was documented in this work.

During his era, at one instance, Sophists confronted him. This confrontation was aimed at getting factual answers as regards to the reason as why a human being must do what is right at all times. Throughout this era, this category of people (the Sophists) mainly constituted male adults. They (the male adults) were known to utilize philosophy with the sole-intention of reaping maximum benefits. Secondly, they used it so as to formulate ethical ambiguities. These initiatives were aimed at making people not to persist with the day-to-day activities. Thirdly, they utilized it (philosophy) as enough justification for engaging in irresponsible behavior within the society. At that time, probity/morality was believed to serve as a platform for sustaining law and order inside the society. Due to this reason, the Sophists saw no good reason as to why people ought to do what is right, and stick to the laid down rules. They also argued that if people who engaged in irresponsible conduct weren't punished, subsequently, inspirational pressure for probity cannot subsist. In his response, Plato indicated that "in real sense, probity is responsible for making a person happier." He indicated that a person's gladness is greatly influenced with the manner in which he-or she conducts him-or herself ethically. Further, he stated that for a person who conducts him-herself in manner which is considered to be unethical by the society, he-she shall be inspired to be ethical if he-or she desires to be glad. Nonetheless, subsequent to answering them (the Sophists), they were not satisfied with the answers.

The soul theory was chiefly formulated by him in order to explain to them the reason as to why a moral person turns out to be happy. In opposition, at this stage, he argued that all the 3 energies of human soul ought to be orderly for a particular individual to be glad. According to him, the Emotions include fury, and dread. On the other hand, the Appetites consist of the desires for food, material things, and more. The Reason includes reflection, disagreement. The latter energy in accordance with Plato must govern the rest of the energies (Appetites, and Emotions). This is if a person desires to be glad-or happy. In accordance with him, if both the Appetite and Emotions energies happen to be governed by the first ranked energy, then an individual is as a result considered to be fair.

A person who is known to oppress others is considered not to be glad. According to Plato, one can easily distinguish this through the manner in which he-or she conducts him-or herself.  This person (the oppressor) in accordance with Plato is typically governed by Emotion, and Appetite. It is believed that this kind of person dislocates the highly ranked energy with one of the inferior passions (Emotion). A perfect example of this dislocation is failure for a person in this state to have confidence with what his-or her undertakings. It is also believed that the oppressor may possibly dislocate the highly ranked energy with Appetite, an inferior passion. A perfect example of this dislocation is the gluttony for political supremacy. In accordance with Plato, this kind of an individual shall be demolished by either the Appetite or Emotion. As a consequence, he-or she may possibly not get gladness with a soul which is in a state of disorderliness. If both the Appetite and the Emotion are ordered by the highly ranked energy, a certain state prevails. This state is known as supernatural accord. It is defined as "a human soul which isn't susceptible to lethal blow." This blow usually emanates from an exterior source.

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The supernatural accord state conveys itself in 4 fundamental merits. In accordance with him, these merits are connected to one another by both the highly ranked energy, and the inferior passions. It has been well documented that he used this theory to define a government which is considered to be ideal. This is a government which is "ruled by theorist kings." These kings according to him are fair. Also, they are governed by the highly ranked energy (Essortment, 2002).

Why Plato's approach may possibly be seen as an Anthropological turn in Western Philosophy

Plato once argued that ideas which are typically fashioned by human beings may not possibly be considered to be factual items epistemologically talking/speaking. According to him, these items/objects may also be considered to be items of facts epistemologically talking. This means that ideas may serve as a source of correct conduct within a particular society. The anthropologically talking ideas are deemed to serve as a foundation for a certain theory which was crafted by Plato. This theory is named as ontological dualism. According to this theory, 2 categories of realities exist. The preliminary one is the intelligible world. The second one is the globe/world of ideas. In accordance with Plato, the initial reality may possibly be regarded as the globe of personal realities. In this regard, Plato argued that this explains the reason as to why the globe keeps on varying from time to time. It also explains the reason as to why the globe is characterized by destruction, and sequential events.

As far as the second reality is concerned, in accordance with him (Plato), it refers to the globe of the universal, and everlasting. It also implies the globe of those realities which cannot be seen by the human eye. These realities are commonly referred to as ideas. According to him, ideas cannot alter. This is due to the fact that they are neither space nor material. Also, they can easily be comprehended, and are the real realities.

The initial reality as much as the ontological dualism theory is equivalent his to description of mankind. This description of man's soul and body is termed as anthropological dualism.  According to him, the body binds mankind to the intelligible globe. On the other hand, the soul is responsible from relieving mankind from the material globe. Additionally, it links mankind to an advanced globe. It has well been documented that anthropological dualism is typified by a fundamental division in mankind. It has also been documented that Plato formulated 2 values which were founded on a doctrine which is known as 'Orphic'.  One of the values is the everlasting soul. The second one is the body. It is responsible for the state of lack of knowledge in a human being. It is also responsible for mankind's unfairness.

Plato's approach may also be possibly be seen as may be seen as an anthropological turn in Western philosophy since the Western philosophical contemplation as regards to the human body, and the 3 energies of the soul (Reason, Emotion, and Appetite) is that the energies are liable for several problems associated with the body. These include suffering, and pains. Another one is misfortunes.  Plato's approach on the other hand is based on the fact that we (human beings) are typically culpable-or guilty as a result of one main reason. This is due to the fact that our bodies, and also ideas are cherished by one of the major religion which is named as Christianity. A human normally strives to practice or engage in those activities which are deemed by the society to be legal. This implies that when a person strives to do according to the will of the society, he-or she forfeits the needs of his-or her body. It also implies the practice of philosophy (History of philosophy, n.d.).

It is crystal clear from Plato's theory of the soul; our souls are normally steered by two main attributes. These include appropriateness and straightness.  It is also apparent that human beings who frequently practice the principles of philosophy shall have a better eternal life. This is attributed to the fact that they comprehend well this globe which is full of ideas. Plato also indicated that those individuals who engage in immoral activities shall be severely punished while in heaven. This is subsequent to undergoing judgment. At this stage, Plato's approach as regards to the both the human body, and soul should be seen as anthropological turn in Western philosophy.


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