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    Socratism is the philosophy or the method of Socrates to whom are generally ascribed an intense ethical devotion that influenced all later Greek philosophy, the development of the inductive method, and the conception of knowledge or insight as the foundation of virtue.

    Socrates exerted a strong influence on philosophers in later antiquity and has continued to do so in the modern era. He was studied by medieval and Islamic scholars and played an important role in the thought of the Italian Renaissance, particularly within the Humanist Movement. Interest in him continued unabated, as reflected in the works of Kierkegaard and Nietzsche.

    Beliefs[edit | edit source]

    Socratic Method[edit | edit source]

    Socrates’ dialectical method was a simple method of questioning that brought to light the often false assumptions on which particular claims to knowledge are based. The Socratic method is a method of hypothesis elimination, in that better hypotheses are found by steadily identifying and eliminating those that lead to contradictions.

    Socratic Irony[edit | edit source]

    Socratic irony is "the dissimulation of ignorance practised by Socrates as a means of confuting an adversary". Socrates would pretend to be ignorant of the topic under discussion, to draw out the inherent nonsense in the arguments of his interlocutors.

    Cosmopolitan Ethics[edit | edit source]

    The most important indication of Socrates’s Cosmopolitanism is his rejection of ordinary politics, trading in local commitments for cosmopolitan ones. As Plato characterizes him, Socrates avoids traditional political engagement as much as he can, in favor of an extraordinary career of examining himself and others, and he insists that these examinations are both genuinely political and extended to all, Athenians and foreigners alike.

    Socratic Daimonion[edit | edit source]

    In several texts Socrates claims he hears a daimōnic sign—an inner voice heard usually when he was about to make a mistake. Modern scholarship has variously interpreted this Socratic daimōnion as a rational source of knowledge, an impulse, a dream or even a paranormal experience felt by an ascetic Socrates.

    Virtue and Knowledge[edit | edit source]

    Socrates's theory of virtue states that all virtues are essentially one, since they are a form of knowledge. For Socrates, the reason a person is not good is because they lack knowledge. Since knowledge is united, virtues are united as well. Another famous dictum—"no one errs willingly"—also derives from this theory. In Protagoras, Socrates argues for the unity of virtues using the example of courage: if someone knows what the relevant danger is, they can undertake a risk.

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