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Dying to the Known

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Yet another proof Socrates offers for the indestructibility of the soul is the idea of the invisible and the visible. Socrates establishes that that which dissipates is that which appears to be made of many parts, and that which is made of one congruous substance suffers no such fate. Thus things that are constant cannot be changed or broken apart. Forms are constant and invariable, given their inalterable nature and are thus indestructible. Given the fact that some things are visible and destructible, Socrates determines that there are two classes of things, the invisible, which is indestructible and the visible, which is destructible.

Seeing as a human being is part body, part soul, we are of two parts: the visible (body) and the invisible (soul). Because of what has been mentioned above, the soul is indestructible even when the body is destroyed. Socrates says, however that there are different fates for souls. Those who focus their life on their bodies and earthly pleasures become attached to their mortal bodies, thus causing damage to their soul. This relates back to Socrates' statement that philosophy is preparation for death in the way that being better disconnected from one's body leads to a stronger soul or a stronger form of existence upon rebirth. Socrates even goes as far as to say that the body is actually a prison, so the lusts and desires of the body are even more so to be avoided. Each bit of pleasure and pain is a nail attaching the soul to the body, a philosopher uses reason to break away from these nails.

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