Socrates Quotes, Sayings, Images
Learn from the man who said, "An unexamined life is not worth living."
These Socrates quotes reveal a philosopher of considerable insight and knowledge. Considered by most to be the founding father of western philosophy, Socrates lives from 469 – 399 B.C.
He grew up in Athens and in his younger life served with distinction as a soldier. But, it was his teaching of young men in Athens where he became famous. His style of teaching bears his name, The Socratic method. It is characterized by asking question after question of students until they arrive at their own understanding of a concept. Traditional teaching methods featured lecturing of facts and ideas.
He was not a writer and apparently wrote nothing down on paper, so all that we know about him comes from other folks, mostly his students (notably Plato), writings. Some historians compare Socrates’ life to Jesus Christ. All that we know about Jesus comes from the gospel writers. Like Jesus, Socrates was sentenced to death by government officials. Socrates was charged with corrupting youth with his ideas and was forced to drink poisonous hemlock as his sentence.
Socrates is revered among philosophers for the saint-like way he led his life. He is remembered for his passion, logic, and innovative ideas demonstrated through his hair-splitting questioning technique.
Best Socrates Quotes
When one man has said so many important things of distinction, it’s hard to limit the number down to a manageable quantity. But, we decided on the 17 best things he ever said. So, let’s begin.
1.) I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think.
2.) An unexamined life is not worth living.
3.) He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.
4.) True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing.
5.) Beware the barrenness of a busy life.
Good Socrates Quotes and Sayings
6.) When the debate is over, slander becomes the tool of the loser.
7.) One thing only I know, and that is that I know nothing.
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8.) To find yourself, think for yourself.
9.) The beginning of wisdom is a definition of terms.
10.) Employ your time in improving yourself by other men’s writings, so that you shall gain easily what others have labored hard for.
11.) I only wish that ordinary people had an unlimited capacity for doing harm; then they might have an unlimited power for doing good.
Short Socrates Quotes
12.) Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.
13.) There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance.
14.) I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance.
15.) All men’s souls are immortal, but the souls of the righteous are immortal and divine.
16.) 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.
17.) He is rich who is content with the least; for contentment is the wealth of nature.
The Socratic Method Video
Socrates’ emphasis was on the importance of the mind and not physical beauty. He believed in self-reflection. He thought a man could only attain true wisdom by knowing himself.
Socrates did not have a separate classroom to provide his instruction. Rather, he traveled all over the city of Athens and taught – or, perhaps better put, asked questions. Socrates was married and had three children.
Due to his lasting impact on thought and philosophy, many schools of philosophy claim him as one of their own. But, there is only one Socrates! We hope you enjoyed this short introduction to Socrates. Continued study will result in more knowledge.
MacKenzie writes about history, culture, and politics.
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