Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Socrates: On the Good

Socrates: On the Good
by Scott Bradley


Though Socrates realized he did not know Truth, or as he more aptly put it, The Good, he believed that there was such a thing. The human mind and heart seems to find it necessary to do so. Reason, however tenuously grounded, assumes Truth. Justice, however arbitrary, assumes the Good. There is an orientation in the human nature which requires the Ultimate. This is essentially what is meant by Tao. It is that Unknowable which unites and underpins all that is.

The Socratic Good does not imply evil, however. Sin is not a moral failure; sin is ignorance. Everyone ultimately just wants what is best for himself. However 'wrong' one's behavior, it is done with the intention of bringing good to oneself. Socrates, therefore, helped people to see how their 'sinful' behavior was a consequence of this ignorance of the Good, and how it failed to further their own good.

We cannot know the Good, just as we cannot know Tao, but we can align ourselves with the natural alignment within ourselves, an alignment toward Tao. This is harmony with Tao.

You can check out Scott's other miscellaneous writings here.

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