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44 Cards in this Set

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Socratic Method - Elenchus

How does it work?

(4 steps)
1. The interlocutor asserts a thesis which Socrates considers to be false.
2. Socrates secures the interlocutor to additional premises
3. Socrates then agrees that the additional premises imply the contrary of the thesis, and the interlocutor agrees
4. Socrates then claims he has shown the interlocutor's thesis is false and the contrary is true
Why are Philosophers not afraid of death?

(5 premises)
- Philosophers are only concerned with the well-being of their souls

- They should distance themselves as much as possible from bodily pleasures

- The senses are imprecise and deceive us

- Ultimate wisdom comes reason alone when distanced from the distraction of the body

- Death is merely separation of the soul from the body.
What were the implications of the classroom discussion on the prohibition on suicide (in relation to divine commands)?
According to Socrates, we are possessions of the Gods; we will be punished for destroying something that is not ours.
What is the Cyclical Argument?

What idea does it support?
Everything that comes to be, does so from its opposite.

It supports the idea that the soul is immortal, that the living comes from the dead, that souls must exist in another world. If they didn't, how could they be born again?
What are some criticisms of the Cyclical Argument?
Criticism arises when the definition of opposites is examined. The argument holds true if the opposites are contradictories - something must have one, but cannot have both. It does not apply if the opposites are contraries.
Converse Relations
X is taller than Y implies Y is shorter than X
Relative on a scale (i.e. hot, cold). Some things could have neither.
Nothing can have both, everything must have one
What is an argument from analogy?
A has P1, P2, and P3
B has P1 and P2. Therefore, B probably has P3.
Are arguments from analogy deductive or inductive?
Define inductive reasoning
Reasoning that goes from specific to general, and is based on a set of empirical data. For example:

All sheep that I have seen are white. Therefore, all sheep must be white.

Most scientific discoveries are based on inductive reasoning.
Define deductive reasoning
Reasoning that goes from general to specific. For example:

- All turtles have shells.
- The animal I captured is a turtle.
- Therefore, the animal I captured has a shell.
What is the supplement to the Cyclical Argument?

What does it explain with regards to life and death?
If things changed from not-P to P and never changed back to not-P, then everything in the end would be P.

Along that same premise, if there is no perpetual cycle of death and life and there is a finite number of souls, ultimately every living thing will be dead.
What are two ways the Cyclical Argument is criticized?
1. There is no impossibility in all living things ending up dead

2. Why can't new lives be created by existing lives?
What is the Recollection Argument?
We possess some non-empirical knowledge of concepts are birth. This implies that the soul existed before birth.
What does Plato think the Recollection Argument shows?
Plato believes it shows that we existed prior to birth.

- We were acquainted with certain concepts before being able to experience sensible equals

- We must exist in order to be acquainted with anything

- Therefore, we existed prior to birth
What does the instructor believe the Recollection Argument shows?
It only shows that the soul existed before birth, not that it continues on after death.
What are some criticisms of the Recollection Argument?
If we were born with certain innate ideas, it would preserve a connection between objective and subjective, as well as a priori and a posteriori without committing us to the ideas of previous lives.
Define a priori knowledge
Knowledge that is independent of experience. For example, for the statement "all bachelors are unmarried", one doesn't need to know every bachelor in the world to know that they are not married.
Define a posteriori knowledge
Knowledge that depends on experience. For example, the statemente "some bachelors are very happy".
What is the Affinity Argument?
Associates the soul with that which is divine, immortal, invisible, incomposite, and invariable. The body, on the other hand, is associated with that which is mortal, visible, composite, and variable.
What two comparisons does Socrates make with the Affinity Argument?
1. The Soul is like the Forms - invisible, incomposite, and most likely immutable and eternal

2. The Soul is like the Gods - just as it is natural for the Gods to rule the people, the Soul will rule the body.
What are two criticisms of the Affinity Argument?
1. It assumes Materialism to be false. If mind - brain, then the soul is visible.

2. The strength of analogical arguments is dubious at best; the analogies must have sufficient detail to be persuasive.
What is Simmias Objection?
It is the idea of the Soul as attunement. Like the Soul, the attunement of a lyre is invisible, incorporeal, and divine. Like the body, the lyre is corporeal, composite, and earthly.

Since destroying the lyre destroys the attunement, wouldn't destroying the body also destroy the soul?
Which argument is Simmias' objection to?
The Affinity argument, which claims the soul is immortal. Simmias' objection claims that it is not.
What is Simmias objection supposed to show?
It is supposed to show that the soul is not necessarily immortal, despite sharing characteristics with attunement.
How does Socrates respond to Simmias? There are three premises in his logic.
1. The Soul is capable of ruling the body.

2. A harmony can exert no influence on the lyre.

3. Therefore, the soul cannot be like a harmony.
Define Dualism
Only two kinds of substances exist: minds and bodies.

If the soul is immortal then dualism is true. The refutation of dualism implies the refutation of the immortality of the soul (but does not exclude the possibility of resurrection).
Define Materialism
If something exists, it is physical
Define Epiphenomenalism
There are physical causes of mental events, but no mental causes of physical events
Define Idealism
Only minds exist. Physical objects do not exist independently of minds, and there is no matter out of which physical objects are made.
Which approaches to the mind best fit Simmias view?
Materialism and Epiphenomenalism
Which approaches to the mind silenced Simmias?
Which approaches to the mind best fits Plato's view?
Dualism - there is no reason to fear death since it is only the body and not the self that will perish.
What is Cebes' objection?
The long lasting nature of the soul does not prove its immortality. It is based on the principle of the weaver and the cloaks - after outlasting the many cloaks that are weaved over a lifetime, the weaver eventually dies himself. In the same light, the soul may eventually die itself after outlasting several bodies.
What argument is Cebes' objection to?
The Affinity argument - specifically with the existence of the soul after death.
What are the causes discussed by Socrates?
1. Physical causes
2. The mind as a cause
3. Forms as causes
Explain physical causes
Scientific explanations are insufficiently general. Socrates believed they failed to supply the necessary and sufficient conditions
Explain the mind as a cause
The teleological explanation, which provides an account that relies on the end goal of an object.
Explain Forms as causes
Forms are the causes of the particular things they exemplify.

Socrates is most certain of this theory, and believes it is the least susceptible to attack.
What is Plato's Principle of Causation?
1. The cause of being P must be P itself, not the opposite of being P.

2. Causes must be objects, otherwise the principle is absurd.

3. The objects in question must be Forms.
What are essential properties?
Some properties are essential to things; that is, the thing cannot be the kind of thing it is without that property. For example, heat is an essential property of fire, cold is an essential property of ice, sharpness is an essential property of a knife.
What is Plato's argument from Essential Properties?
- The Soul is essentially alive.

- Nothing can have a property opposite to its essential property.

- Therefore, the Soul is necessarily deathless
How is the Argument from Essential Properties related to the Recollection Argument?
The Essential Properties argument attempts to prove that the soul exists after death. The Recollection Argument attempts to prove that the soul exists before birth.