Socrates on the Afterlife

Socrates and the Afterlife

                                                              By: Crystal Lancaster

                                                                  Philosophy 105

                                                                  November 8, 2013

                                                                    Martha Stillman



In the Phaedo dialogue Socrates expresses that the soul is appears to be immortal. He says that there is no salvation from evil except to achieve virtue and knowledge. He believes that after death the dead gather for judgment and travel to the world below and a guide brings them back after several transformations of ages. The souls of murderers and wrong doers will find that everyone will turn from them and no one will want to be their companion. He says that these souls will be cast into a river and lay for a year and then they will be allowed to raise their voices and beg forgiveness of their victims. Only then if they are given pity they are allowed out of this river and into a lake and bring their troubles to an end. Those who have lead holy or pure lives are released and go to their homes above and live in purer earth. This is why Socrates did not fear death; it was because he believed he was going to live in the purer earth above. If I could meet Socrates I would ask him if he believes that any evil or sin is automatically forgiven. I really enjoyed this reading because to me it seems like when he spoke of the river and being thrown into Tartarus what he was actually speaking of was Hell or some form of it. He says that the souls of the evil are hurled into Tartarus and never allowed to leave, except for those that have spent their remaining lives repenting for the evil they have committed. I also think that this purer heaven can...