Plato's Arguments for Proving the Inmortality and Longevity of the Soul

Decent Essays

Plato argues for the immortality of the soul in the Phaedo. He provides 3 arguments for his theory, the arguments from opposites, recollection, and affinity. Each argument proposes an intriguing account for his claim that the soul must exist past death. His evidence and proposal for each account leave no room for counterarguments. Fellow philosophers like Simmias and Cebes provide two different counters for Plato’s claim, however he accurately disproves them by using his 3 arguments as rebuttal. Plato’s three arguments for the proving of the immortality and longevity of a soul provide clear and concise reasons to agree with his approach.
Phaedo was set in a prison. While in prison, Socrates contemplated whether or not there is an …show more content…

Like, the body and a being being dead or alive. The soul is what remains the bridging factor between the two.
Socrates’ second argument is the Theory of Recollection. He explains that the soul plunges in the body and as it corrects itself, it loses clarity. Thus allowing experiences in the body to recollect the past memories. The active intellect can exist when the body ceases to be. It separates from soul and body and conjoins with the unmoved mover also known as God who moves the active-intellect by thinking. Socrates explains how the soul existed before birth, but not necessarily after death. He elaborates that all learning is a matter of recollecting what we already know, what our soul already knows. We forget much of our knowledge at birth, and can be made to recollect this knowledge through proper questioning, experiences, and sensations. The fact that we had such knowledge at birth, and could forget it, clearly proves that our souls had to have existed before we were born.
For instance, when a baby is born the first thing it does is cry. A new born baby is not taught to cry when in pain, hungry, or thirsty, dirty, too hot, or too cold. It is perhaps the first and easiest behavior to remember and do. This innate behavior comes from a recollection of a learned behavior. From this moment on, as the being learns and gains knowledge, it continues the cycle of recollection from the soul.
Socrates’ third argument is the Argument from Affinity. He concludes this

Get Access