Help with Socrates Thesis

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Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2008 06:41 pm
"Socrates: We shall know better my friend, in a little while. The point which I should first wish to understand is whether the pious or holy is beloved by the gods because it is holy, or holy because it is loved by the gods."
What is the thesis and what does this quote do for socrates and his argument?:perplexed:
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2008 06:50 pm
@girly girl,
Hi girly girl,

Is this from Eutyphro?
And do you mean the thesis of Eutyphro or of that question?

Have you read the work?

It can be found here.
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2008 07:53 pm
@girly girl,
Socrates is asking whether values exist independently (and perhaps prior in time to) of religion, or whether religion (in this case, the Greek pantheon) determines these values. I would suppose Socrates (i.e. Plato) would argue that the Forms precede any participation in them (for example, the Good-itself).

[aside: It would be useful in the forums to always provide a citation of the passage to allow the responders to review the argument easily. In the case of works of Plato, the Stephanus edition and pagination is the standard.]
Reply Tue 14 Oct, 2008 08:07 pm
In the context of the story, Socrates wishes to understand the pious because he himself is being brought to trial for "impiety", among other charges, and Euthyphro must, according to Socrates, understand what this is, because he is charging his own father with murder based on some reasoning that must only be due to the knowledge of what is pious.

Euthyphro defines piety as that which is loved by the gods. Socrates uses that quote, along with other quotes found in the story, to show that if the gods love something that does not necessarily make it pious, rather the gods would love it because it is inherently "pious". So there is some intrinsic thing that exists in the pious which is recognizable as being pious.

The greek word that is translated as pious has an implication of divine approval. Euthyphro's first definition of what is pious is basically like saying "that which the gods love is loved by the gods because the gods love it". This of course makes no logical sense.

There is much more to this subject, and people have written and argued on it for years, but I think you should read the text more thoroughly and then get back to us on what exactly you need help with..
Reply Mon 20 Oct, 2008 02:42 pm
@girly girl,
Incorrect, Socrates stands in error, and in that he should have asked the straight question : what is the PIOUS? He never could have received an answer except that he imposed a choice of answers upon his initial proposition...

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