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Euthyphro

The beginning of the story was easy to understand. I could picture

Euthyphro walking up and asking Socrates what he had been doing at the

palace. He didn?t seem to be too surprised to hear that Socrates was being

impeached.

I?m not sure what I think about Euthyphro prosecuting his own

father. I suppose that for the sake of justice, it would be the right thing to

do. To judge him on terms of piety, I would have no clue how to do that. I

wasn?t really sure exactly what piety was when I began reading the story.

Quite honestly, I didn?t receive an answer either. I found myself being

pulled into the circles that Euthyphro was pulled into.

It is somewhat humorous how Socrates goes about asking Euthyphro

about the meaning of piety. He actually seems a bit condescending in his

questioning, but Euthyphro didn?t seem to notice. His character seemed to

be pleased in being thought of as an expert on the matter of piety (and

impiety). I don?t believe that Socrates expected to receive a definite answer

to his questions. The whole point seemed to be an attempt to make

Euthyphro really think about his own definitions and his position in

prosecuting his own father.

Socrates somewhat lures Euthyphro into thinking they are coming

from the same angle. It is amusing the way Socrates makes himself appear

to be a student of Euthyphro. Any reader should be able to tell after a

short time who the wiser man is.

In the very beginning of the questioning, I could actually follow

along. I understood exactly what was being said. I could also see the

entrapment that Socrates was heading toward. As an outsider, reading

with the ability to back up and review, I found myself chuckling as Socrates

brought Euthyphro around in circles. As I got further into the story, I also

became lost and was forced to reread many different paragraphs. As

Socrates pulled Euthyphro further into confusion, I also felt more confused.

I do think I was able to sort out a few points, though.

I understood the question raised concerning issues that were loved

and hated by the gods. It was a good idea. In a polytheistic society, how

could the people choose which issues to follow, if some were to be loved by

certain gods and hated by others? Euthyphro didn?t actually answer that

question well. He reverted to his own trial against his father.

I became totally lost in the whole discussion of carrying, becoming,

and suffering. I tried to sort through that multiple times, but couldn?t seem

to grasp his point. I?m not really sure Euthyphro ever understood that part

either.

I did understand the point made about holy, loved, and dear.

Euthyphro thought he understood them too, but when Socrates brought

them up in the end, they were right back at the beginning where they

started.

Even though Socrates never got a definite answer from Euthyphro

concerning piety and impiety, I believe he accomplished his goal. I truly

don?t think he ever expected to walk away with a sound interpretation of

piety and impiety. Perhaps he already knew the correct meanings. The

goal of the conversation could have simply been to confuse Euthyphro into

confronting his own ideas and beliefs. I would have been frustrated in that

situation. I have been in a class before when no one seemed to understand

my questions, and the questions went unanswered.


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