I'm still at the beginning of _Sophie's World_, mainly because I spend so little time reading. Perhaps I should blog less and do more reading? Anyway, while reading this book I feel as though I am looking at things again through the curious eyes of a young girl. It is such a rejuvinating experience to be reading this book! I've always enjoyed learning, but Mr. Gaarder takes an educational subject and makes it fun to explore. He makes me think. Ah! How I've missed really thinking!
I wonder if I am anything like Socrates? As you well know, Socrates was a great philosopher. If you don't remember him, you can probably at least remember him by the tragic way he died, being poisoned to death by Hemlock because he stood by what he believed all the way to the very end. Not many people would do that. I'm not saying I would have the courage to do such a thing. That is not how I am like him. But, I do feel as if I know so little and that does trouble me, so much so that I'm constantly seeking answers. That was how Socrates lived. As it says in _Sophie's World_, "A philosopher is someone who recognizes that there is a lot he does not understand, and is troubled by it." In that sense I can say I'm like Socrates. Of course I'm not as great as he was, and I probably won't be remembered thousands of years after my death like he was. Actually, the spirit of Socrates is in many of us. Those who look at life with great curiosity and seek answers have his spirit.
Can you see him now? Socrates, the portly bearded man wandering around the city square of Athens engaging his latest victim in a discussion of philosophy.... But what made him different from the Sophists of the day? He didn't pretend to know everything. He didn't lecture or preach or even teach for that matter. He simply helped others form reasonable conclusions on their own through their discussion with him.
I've run into many Sophists in my time, but I am lucky to have run into a few Socrateses, too. Those are the ones who cause me to think.