Platos justice In the opening of The Republic, Plato seems to say that justice is a balance of the soul. (Taylor 77) As Plato is debating this question, Thrasymachus joins in and presents the first possible definition of justice as the interest of the stronger, that might is right. Socrates enters the conversation and attempts to define justice. Socrates says that subjects obey their rulers and these rulers are not perfect, they sometimes make mistakes. If justice is the interest of the stronger and the stronger symbolizes the rulers, then when rulers rule rightly they make rules agreeable to their own interests. When rulers rule wrongly, they make rules contrary to their interests. The subjects are the ones who obeyed the rules instated by the rulers.
Having shown that justice may not only be the interest of the stronger but also the injury, Plato further seeks the definition of justice. Socrates implements a usage of medicine. The art of medicine tends to the needs of the body, not to the interest of the medicine. If medicine attended to its own interest, it would serve no practical use. However, medicine considers the interest of the patients. The same can be said about doctors who consider the needs of their patients, not only his own needs. If the doctor only had interest in himself he would cease to be a doctor.
Having argued back and forth Plato dismisses that justice is the interest of the stronger. (Taylor 90) Rulers who rule in their own interest breed unhappy subjects, ignoring the needs of the subjects for their own needs. In the past history has shown that discontent subjects rebel against their rulers. Thus, rulers should rule in the interest of the subjects. Upon realizing his situation, Thrasymacus changes his opinion, arguing that a ruler benefits in life by injustice. (Bambrough 113) He also states that an unjust man benefits where a just man suffers. Thus, justice is a virtue, injustice a vice.
Indian Marxist Critique Of Law And Justice Essays and Term Papers “The Marxist Notion of Law as the Handmaid of Exploitation Is Everywhere in Evidence” (Keith Dickson). Discuss This View of Der Kaukadische Kreidekreis. ‘The Marxist notion of law as the handmaid of exploitation is everywhere in evidence’ (Keith Dickson). Discuss this view of Der kaukasische Kreidekreis. Der ...
A truly unjust person leads a life of individualism and anarchy, seeking to gain over both the just and unjust. This could not possibly lead to a comfortable and peaceful life. A set of unjust rulers would constantly suspect each other, unable to trust and always desiring to posses what others may have. Ultimately they would destroy themselves, so their injustice would be their vice. However, the just man does not seek more than other just men. (Bambrough 120) Thus, the just benefits and are able to attain happiness and contentment, unworried of constantly protecting his own interest.
Having shown that justice is not the interest of the stronger, an unjust life is worse than a just life, and the just person benefits over the unjust, Plato moves on to define justice and the just life. Plato reasons that justice is having a particular state of being. Justice is a function of the mind. Since reason separates us from nature, reason makes us superior to the rest of nature. Reason is our highest faculty and reason should be our highest goal. A life spent in pursuit of power, wealth, and honor is dominated by the spirit. Our reason gives us free will, thus a life dominated by spirit is not free, but a slave to itself, No one can be truly happy without a sense of limitation or balance. (Vlastos 160) The spirited life becomes addicted to want, never realizing satisfaction.
What is the true nature of the Good Life? Is it living life with concern for only oneself despite the possible consequences of one’s action on others? Or might it involve self-sacrifice in effort to do what one feels is right or just? Is it descriptive, or perhaps prescriptive? Two prominent Greeks, Thucydides and Plato, began providing answers to these questions over 25 centuries ago as ...
Like an animal the spirited man moves from one satiation to the next. However, a life dominated by reason, in which reason balances the spirited and appetitive natures to harmony, results in a good life. Thus the just person will have the appetitive, spirited, and reasoning aspects of the soul in harmony, with reason to guide and director of the passions and appetite. Lacking a concrete definition, justice would be the balance of the tripartite soul, with reason in control. Justice is a harmony between the tripartite soul in which reason guides the spirit and appetite. Justice is good in itself and good in its practical ends. Justice is educating desires, implementing the human faculty of reason.
A just life leads to harmony, balance, and virtue, according to Plato. Plato believes that in order for politics to serve as means to the good life for human beings, the political leaders should be those who are really capable of ruling. Plato’s “The Republic” is not an explication of laws of the people. It is a separation of power amongst three classes–Rulers, Auxiliaries, Commoners–that makes the most of each person’s natural abilities and strives for the good of the community. The point is to create a harmonious unity amongst the three classes which will lead to the greater good of the community and, consequently, each individual. The three classes are a product of different aptitude levels for certain tasks amid various individuals. Plato assigns different political roles to different members of each class.
It appears that the only classes that are allowed to participate in government are the Auxiliaries and, of course, the Philosopher Rulers. The lower class does not partake in politics because they are not mentally able. In other words, they do not understand the concept of the forms. Thus, it is better to allow the Philosophers, who do have this knowledge, to lead them. Bibliography 1.Bambrough, E. ed., New Essays on Plato and Aristotle.
New York: Harper Collins, 1995. 2.Taylor, A. E. Plato: The Man and His Work. New York: Random House, 1989. 3.Vlastos, G.
Platonic Studies. London: Pluto Press, 1992..
Platos View of Justice There is a natural progression from Plato's theory of Forms to his philosophy of ethics. If one can be deceived by appearances in the natural physical world, one can be equally deceived by appearances in the moral realm. The kind of knowledge that helps one to distinguish between shadows, reflections, and real objects in the visible world is just the kind of knowledge that ...