Essay Title: 

Plato`s Euthyphro

April 3, 2016 | Author: | Posted in philosophy, social sciences


Plato ‘s Euthyphro






In this platonic dialogue featuring Socrates and Euthyphro , the two engage in a discussion about the essence of piety and the pious . The scene is the porch of king Archon . Both of them are seeking the attention of the king in cases that are of concern to each of them . It is here that Socrates seeks to learn from Euthyphro the nature of piety because Euthyphro professes great knowledge on the subject . Following Socrates [banner_entry_middle]

characteristic enquiry , Euthyphro comes up with several definitions , which are discussed in this article together with Socrates responses to them

The first definition

After Socrates rejects his very first attempt to discover the essence of the pious by the pointing out that he did not ask for a few examples of piety , Euthyphro gives the first definition that piety is what is dear to the gods and impiety what is not dear to them . Taking an earlier assertion by Euthyphro that gods indeed do have dire quarrels , battles and fights , Socrates begins to enquire into the depth of the definition given

Socrates argues that since gods fight and quarrel , then they must do that because of differences in values , beliefs and most importantly because of differences in opinion about what is just and unjust , what is good and evil , what is honorable and what is not . Similarly one act could be considered good to one god and evil to another . That some act could be agreeable to Zeus but not agreeable to Cronos or Uranus Euthyphro then suggested that surely all the gods would agree on the propriety of punishing a murderer . Socrates counters this by arguing that even men dare not dispute that a doer of injustice should go unpunished , rather they deny that such a wrong has been done . The gods would do the same and deny that injustice is done among them while others say it is done . It would follow from the argument that what is pious and holy to some gods could be impious and evil to others . A question arises how do you know for sure that your presumed pious acts are not agreeable to some gods but hateful to the rest ? This cannot be and so the definition is rejected

After then Euthyphro amends his definition and say that Pious and holy is what all gods , love and impious what all gods hate . In the same manner as above Socrates refutes this definition by arguing that the gods love piety because it is holy and not holy because the gods love it . Consequently the definition that pious is what all gods love does not satisfy define piety but is just an attribute . In simple terms , what Socrates is saying is that Pious is loved by Gods because it is a kind to be loved and is not pious because its loved by the gods . It is not possible therefore to say that the gods love pious… [banner_entry_footer]


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