Quotes About Socrates
Wikipedia Summary for Socrates
Socrates (Ancient Greek: Σωκράτης Sōkrátēs [sɔːkrátɛːs]; c. 470 – 399 BC) was a Greek philosopher from Athens who is credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, and as being the first moral philosopher of the Western ethical tradition of thought.
An enigmatic figure, he authored no texts, and is known chiefly through the accounts of classical writers composing after his lifetime, particularly his students Plato and Xenophon. Other sources include the contemporaneous Antisthenes, Aristippus, and Aeschines of Sphettos. Aristophanes, a playwright, is the main contemporary author to have written plays mentioning Socrates during Socrates' lifetime, although a fragment of Ion of Chios' Travel Journal provides important information about Socrates' youth.
Plato's dialogues are among the most comprehensive accounts of Socrates to survive from antiquity, from which Socrates has become renowned for his contributions to the fields of ethics and epistemology. It is this Platonic Socrates who lends his name to the concepts of Socratic irony and the Socratic method, or elenchus. However, questions remain regarding the distinction between the real-life Socrates and Plato's portrayal of Socrates in his dialogues.
Socrates exerted a strong influence on philosophers in later antiquity and in the modern era. Depictions of Socrates in art, literature and popular culture have made him one of the most widely known figures in the Western philosophical tradition.
The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.
I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing.
The unexamined life is not worth living.
Beware the barrenness of a busy life.
May the outward and inward man be at one.
He is a man of courage who does not run away, but remains at his post and fights against the enemy.
He is the richest who is content with the least.
True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing.
True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing. And in knowing that you know nothing, that makes you the smartest of all.
Let him that would move the world first move himself.
An honest man is always a child.
Nature has given us two ears, two eyes, and but one tongue, to the end that we should hear and see more than we speak.
By all means marry. If you get a good wife, you'll become happy. If you get a bad one, you'll become a philosopher.
Death is one of two things. Either it is annihilation, and the dead have no consciousness of anything; or, as we are told, it is really a change: a migration of the soul from one place to another.
The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.
The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary.There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance.
It is not the purpose of a juryman's office to give justice as a favor to whoever seems good to him, but to judge according to law, and this he has sworn to do.
In every sort of danger there are various ways of winning through, if one is ready to do and say anything whatever.
Virtue does not come from wealth, but wealth, and every other good thing which men have comes from virtue.
The Delphic Oracle said I was the wisest of all the Greeks. It is because that I alone, of all the Greeks, know that I know nothing.
Just as you ought not to attempt to cure eyes without head or head without body, so you should not treat body without soul.
God would seem to indicate to us and not allow us to doubt that these beautiful poems are not human, or the work of man, but divine and the work of God; and that the poets are only the interpreters of the Gods.
Aren't you ashamed to be concerned so much about making all the money you can and advancing your reputation and prestige, while for truth and wisdom and the improvement of your souls you have no thought or car?
I do nothing but go about persuading you all, old and young alike, not to take thought for your persons or your properties, but and chiefly to care about the greatest improvement of the soul.
I am confident that there truly is such a thing as living again, that the living spring from the dead, and that the souls of the dead are in existence.
The nearest way to glory a shortcut, as it were is to strive to be what you wish to be thought to be.
There is no difference between knowledge and temperance; for he who knows what is good and embraces it, who knows what is bad and avoids it, is learned and temperate.
It is not difficult to avoid death, gentlemen of the jury; it is much more difficult to avoid wickedness, for it runs faster than death.
Whenever a number of individuals have a common name, we assume them to have also a corresponding idea or form.
Are you not ashamed of your eagerness to possess as much wealth, reputation, and honors as possible, while you do not care for nor give thought to wisdom or truth, or the best possible state of your soul?
And I say let a man be of good cheer about his soul. When the soul has been arrayed in her own proper jewels -- temperance and justice, and courage, and nobility and truth -- she is ready to go on her journey when the hour comes.
He who has lived as a true philosopher has reason to be of good cheer when he is about to die, and that after death he may hope to receive the greatest good in the other world.
Beloved Pan and all ye other gods who haunt this place, give me beauty in the inward soul, and may the outward and the inner man be at one.
If we pursue our habit of eating animals, and if our neighbour follows a similar path, will we need to go to war against our neighbour to secure greater pasturage, because ours will not be enough to sustain us, and our neighbour will have a similar need to wage war on us for the same reason.
The soul then, as being immortal, and having been born again many times, and having seen all things that exist, whether in this world or in the world below, has knowledge of them all ... all enquiry and all learning is but recollection.
I will not yield to any man contrary to what is right, for fear of death, even if I should die at once for not yielding.
Get married, in any case. If you happen to get a good mate, you will be happy; if a bad one, you will become philosophical, which is a fine thing in itself.
I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long and in all places am always fastening upon you, arousing and persuading and reproaching you.
One who is injured ought not to return the injury, for on no account can it be right to do an injustice.
One who is injured ought not to return the injury, for on no account can it be right to do an injustice; and it is not right to return an injury, or to do evil to any man, however much we have suffered from him.
If measure and symmetry are absent from any composition in any degree, ruin awaits both the ingredients and the composition... Measure and symmetry are beauty and virtue the world over.
I was afraid that by observing objects with my eyes and trying to comprehend them with each of my other senses I might blind my soul altogether.
By all implies marry if you get a great wife husband, you are going to be pleased. If you get a bad a single, you are going to become a philosopher.
There are a great many of these accusers, and they have been accusing me now for a great many years, and what is more, they approached you at the most impressionable age, when some of you were children or adolescents; and literally won their case by default, because there was no one to defend me.
Do it because it's in your heart. Not because you want something in return. Employ your time in improving yourself by other men's writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for.
Be of good hope in the face of death. Believe in this one truth for certain, that no evil can befall a good man either in life or death, and that his fate is not a matter of indifference to the gods.
When death comes to a man, the mortal part of him dies, but the immortal part retires at the approach of death and escapes unharmed and indestructible... It is as certain as anything can be... that soul is immortal and imperishable, and that our souls will really exist in the next world.
The really important thing is not to live, but to live well. And to live well meant, along with more enjoyable things in life, to live according to your principles.
The individual leads in order that those who are led can develop their potential as human beings and thereby prosper.
Nobody knows what death is,
nor whether to man
it is perchance the greatest of blessings,
yet people fear it as if they surely knew
it to be the worse of evils.
Why should we pay so much attention to what 'most people' think? The really reasonable people, who have more claim to be considered, will believe that the facts are exactly as they are.
True perfection is a bold quest to seek. Only the willing and true of heart will seek the betterment of many.
For this fear of death is indeed the pretense of wisdom, and not real wisdom, being the appearance of knowing the unknown; since no one knows whether death, which they in their fear apprehend to be the greatest evil, may not be the greatest good.
For this fear of death is indeed the pretense of wisdom, and not real wisdom, being the appearance of knowing the unknown; since no one knows whether death, which they in their fear apprehend to be the greatest evil, may not be the greatest good. Is there not here conceit of knowledge, which is a disgraceful sort of ignorance? And this is the point in which, as I think, I am superior to men in general, and in which I might perhaps fancy myself wiser than other men, - that whereas I know but little of the world below, I do not suppose that I know: but I do know that injustice and disobedience to a better, whether God or man, is evil and dishonorable, and I will never fear or avoid a possible good rather than a certain evil.
I soon realized that poets do not compose their poems with knowledge, but by some inborn talent and by inspiration, like seers and prophets who also say many fine things without any understanding of what they say.
If a man comes to the door of poetry untouched by the madness of the Muses, believing that technique alone will make him a good poet, he and his sane compositions never reach perfection, but are utterly eclipsed by the performances of the inspired madman.
I prefer to be refuted than to refute, for it is a greater good for oneself to be freed from the greatest evil than to free another.
The alphabet will create forgetfulness in the learners' souls. They will trust the written characters and not remember themselves.
The shortest and surest way to live with honor in the world, is to be in reality what we would appear to be, all human virtues increase and strengthen themselves by the practice and experience of them.
It was far too cold. The second I got out I had this incredible headache, I'm just not used to it. The last time I saw snow was years and years ago.
Not by wisdom do they poets make what they compose, but by a gift of nature and an inspiration similar to that of the diviners and the oracles.
If thou continuous to take delight in idle argumentation thou mayest be qualified to combat with the sophists, but will never know how to live with men.
A painter will paint a cobbler, carpenter, or any other artist, though he knows nothing of their arts; and, if he is a good artist, he may deceive children or simple persons, when he shows them his picture of a carpenter from a distance, and they will fancy that they are looking at a real carpenter.
Listen not to a tale-bearer or slanderer, for he tells thee nothing out of good-will; but as he discovereth of the secrets of others, so he will of thine in turn.
Who knows if to live is to be dead, and to be dead, to live? And we really, it may be, are dead; in fact I once heard sages say that we are now dead, and the body is our tomb.
It is better to make a mistake with full force of your being than to carefully avoid mistakes with a trembling spirit.
I have not sought during my life to amass wealth and to adorn my body, but I have sought to adorn my soul with the jewels of wisdom, patience, and above all with a love of liberty.
What is happening to our young people? They disrespect their elders, they disobey their parents. They ignore the law. They riot in the streets inflamed with wild notions. Their morals are decaying. What is to become of them?
Man must rise above the Earth -- to the top of the atmosphere and beyond -- for only thus will he fully understand the world in which he lives.
All of the wisdom of this world is but a tiny raft upon which we must set sail when we leave this earth. If only there was a firmer foundation upon which to sail, perhaps some divine word.
The cure of many diseases remains unknown to the physicians of Hellos (Greece) because they do not study the whole person.
Wealth does not bring about excellence, but excellence makes wealth and everything else good for men, both individually and collectively.
By far the greatest and most admirable form of wisdom is that needed to plan and beautify cities and human communities.
For the poet is a light and winged and holy thing, and there is no invention in him until he has been inspired and is out of his senses, and the mind is no longer in him: when he has not attained to this state, he is powerless and is unable to utter his oracles.
Are you not ashamed of caring so much for the making of money and for fame and prestige, when you neither think nor care about wisdom and truth and the improvement of your soul?
If you want to be a good saddler, saddle the worst horse; for if you can tame one, you can tame all.
It is never right to do wrong or to requite wrong with wrong, or when we suffer evil to defend ourselves by doing evil in return.
One should never do wrong in return, nor mistreat any man, no matter how one has been mistreated by him.
Musical training is a more potent instrument than any other, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul, on which they mightily fasten, imparting grace, and making the soul of him who is rightly educated graceful, or of him who is ill-educated ungraceful.
Remember, no human condition is ever permanent. Then you will not be overjoyed in good fortune nor too scornful in misfortune.
The greatest flood has the soonest ebb; the sorest tempest the most sudden calm; the hottest love the coldest end; and from the deepest desire oftentimes ensues the deadliest hate.
You are wrong, sir, if you think that a man who is any good at all should take into account the risk of life or death; he should look to this only in his actions, whether what he does is right or wrong, whether he is acting like a good or a bad man.
To fear death, gentlemen, is no other than to think oneself wise when one is not, to think one knows what one does not know.
To fear death, gentlemen, is no other than to think oneself wise when one is not, to think one knows what one does not know. No one knows whether death may not be the greatest of all blessings for a man, yet men fear it as if they knew that it is the greatest of evils.
Children today are tyrants. They contradict their parents, gobble their food, and tyrannize their teachers.
No man has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.
Serenity, regularity, absence of vanity, sincerity, simplicity, veracity, equanimity, Fixity, non-irritability, adaptability, Humility, tenacity, integrity, nobility, magnanimity, charity, generosity, purity. Practise daily these eighteen ities You will soon attain immortality.
My friend… care for your psyche… know thyself, for once we know ourselves, we may learn how to care for ourselves.
I am wiser than this man, for neither of us appears to know anything great and good; but he fancies he knows something, although he knows nothing; whereas I, as I do not know anything, so I do not fancy I do.
I am wiser than this man, for neither of us appears to know anything great and good; but he fancies he knows something, although he knows nothing; whereas I, as I do not know anything, so I do not fancy I do. In this trifling particular, then, I appear to be wiser than he, because I do not fancy I know what I do not know.
I only wish that ordinary people had an unlimited capacity for doing harm; then they might have an unlimited power for doing good.
If all misfortunes were laid in one common heap whence everyone must take an equal portion, most people would be contented to take their own and depart.