Deepstash brings you key ideas from the most inspiring articles like this one:

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

What Is Socratic Ignorance?

What Is Socratic Ignorance?
This sort of humility regarding what one knows is associated with Socrates because he is portrayed as displaying it in several of Plato’s dialogs.


Key Ideas

Save all ideas

Socratic ignorance

Socratic ignorance

Socratic ignorance refers to a person's acknowledgment of their ignorance: "I know only one thing – that I know nothing."

It is also referred to as "Socratic wisdom."


1.92k READS


Socratic ignorance in Plato's Dialogues

Greek philosopher Socrates (469-399 BCE) is associated with humility regarding what one knows. In Plato's dialogues, Socrates is shown to challenge someone who thinks they know something, but when questioned thoroughly about it, turns out not to understand at all. By contrast, Socrates admits from the start that he does not know the answer.

In the Meno (a Socratic dialogue by Plato), Socrates is asked by Meno if virtue can be taught. Socrates responds that he doesn't know what virtue is. In a later part of the dialogue, Socrates shows that an essential step to learning anything is to clear one's mind of false ideas, even if you seem ignorant.


1.19k READS

The Importance of Socratic Ignorance

The best way to change dogmatically held beliefs is to start with a skeptical attitude and ask questions, assuming you know nothing.

However, it is questionable how feasible it is to keep an attitude of Socratic ignorance on all matters. Even Socrates says, for instance, that he is sure that no real harm can befall a good man. He is equally confident that "the unexamined life is not worth living."


1.16k READS


Pursuing happiness

Pursuing happiness

We all say we want to be happy, but happiness is often out of our grasp. Maybe the problem is not so much with us, but with the concept of happiness.

A better concept i...


Unlike happiness, eudaimonia is not an emotion: It is a state of being or doing. It is more stable and cannot so quickly be taken away from us.

Eudaimonia is a much deeper and richer concept than happiness and is viewed in terms of living a worthwhile life. It has everything to do with hard work.

Socrates and Plato on Eudaimonia

Socrates equated eudaimonia with wisdom and virtue, stating that he who is not wise cannot be happy.

Plato broadly agreed with Socrates. Plato writes that justice and injustice are to the soul as health and disease are to the body. For Plato, an unjust man cannot be happy because he is not in ordered control of himself.

one more idea

Live Every Day as If It Were Your Last

Death doesn’t make life pointless, death makes life worth living. Sometimes the discussion about the meaning of life serves no purpose besides distracting you from the answer, which is found...

Food as a Test Of Self-Control

Although eating food is pleasurable, digesting it is our main purpose. We should eat to live rather than live to eat.

To practice this principle, one can eat plain foods without sauces or try intermittent fasting.

“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”

“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”

The Meaning of a Good Life

The Meaning of a Good Life

One of the oldest philosophical questions is the meaning of living well. Philosophers have delved into the hidden complexities of how should one live and what is the concept of the good lif...

Plato And Socrates on Living a Moral Life

  • The Greek philosopher Socrates stated that it is better to suffer and die than to be corrupted and use one’s wealth and power in a dishonourable way.
  • Plato claimed that being morally good has an inner harmony, while a dishonest, wicked person is always at unease, and in a disharmonious state of being.

Morality and Religions

  • Believers Of God, both in east and west, believe that good, pious deeds and intentions are rewarded by God; many people do not receive their reward in this life.
  • Hindus believe that Karma will ensure that their good deeds will be rewarded, while evil actions and desires will be punished, either in this life or in future lives.