One day in 399 B.C. at dusk after sunset, Socrates, the wisest and best of men, hurried the glass of hemlock (a well common plant in our geographical area) that will produce death, in the presence of his close friends who desolate attend the moral fortitude with which he faces the judgment. Socrates was 70 or 71 years old. An unjust sentence, following the infamous complaints of three opportunist, envious and resentful citizens with their teacher, made in a favorable overall environment for it, killed the teacher and gave him everlasting fame that in no way could suspect his contemporaries.
The question has often been raised. Plato in his “Apology” or “Defense of Socrates” and in some dialogues and Xenophon in his “Defence of Socrates,” give us enough information about how the negative environment was generated to condemn the most wise and just man by the the apparently inconsistent reporting of three mediocre and envious fellow.
And it is precisely this failure and injustice that keeps alive the interest in understanding the contradiction that the first democracy in history condemned unjustly the most wise and just man who courageously accept the death penalty.
Now, as a general rule it can not be interpreted past with social values of the moment.
The comedy The Clouds, of Aristophanes, ridicules to the point the figure of Socrates, helping to create an atmosphere of hostility to the fully honest philosopher that would take him to the death sentence.
Comedy does not hesitate to use themes and cartoons which excite popular hilarity such as the emphasis on eschatological and “anal” (referring to the anus or ass) themes, as the explanation of why farts and farting occur according to opinion of the “great Socrates”.
At this time around the summer solstice, when the days are longer and the nights shorter, they proliferate celebrations and demonstrations of the “gay pride” in which homosexuals, gays, lesbians and transsexuals exhibit the rainbow flag and say the right to have a different sexuality to heterosexual, which until recently was the only canonized and defended by the laws and customs, while others were condemned and persecuted.
Astronomers, along with medical doctors, were certainly the best scientists valued in antiquity. Largely they are confused with “astrologers” and “healers”, two activities connected with religion and the life of the temples.
Pausanias is a Greek author of second century AD, probably from Lydia in Asia Minor, who traveled in various parts of the ancient world and has left us a precious book , the first tour guide about we have news, his Description of Greece.
The old myth of the ages or races of man, with a first gold age which degenerates to the hard and fierce iron age as the moral behavior of man worsens, exists in many literatures. A thousand times told in antiquity and since antiquity, it was sufficiently known by Cervantes who was influenced significantly by it: after all, the “Knight of the Sorrowful Figure” aims to create a better world, perhaps like that existed in the “golden age”, judging by the presence which this illusion has in Don Quixote.
We must to be politically correct. But what does this “hackneyed” phrase meant on these days? There is no doubt it referrs to the obviously hypocritical attitude with which people, especially those who play a “political” function, should act to citizens, expressing just what your listeners want to hear or at least it which
Naturally, the experience is acquired with practice and it needs time; so the experience is typical of people of a certain age old. It is precisely the repetition of the action and the memory of what was done and how it was done that gives “knowledge” to the man. To this it must be added the need for cohesion of the social group facing a difficult life and livelihood. This largely explains the respect and consideration to the “authority” of the elderly.
It should be some precision about the “Gardens of Academos” which gave name to the famous school founded by Plato. First, Academy is not a building, as one may think, but an area or neighborhood of Athens, outside the walls, approximately 1.5 kilometers, which is called the Academy, Ἀκαδημία, or Hekademeia (Ἑκαδήμεια), from the name of the local hero Academos or Hekademos, as Diogenes Laertius said in “Life of eminent Philosophers”, 3.7 ff.: