Nick_A wrote: ↑
Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:51 pm
Query: how can Socrates be the wisest of men if Socrates is without wisdom? (the Delphic riddle)
That is the Socratic paradox, and it is about wisdom in philosophy. Plato explains the paradox this way: Socrates' wisdom is that Socrates doesn't think he is wise when he is not. For when the people Socrates questions are shown that they don't know what they think they know, they go on thinking they do anyway, whereas Socrates is at least wise enough to know when he doesn't know (Apology 21d). His entire wisdom in philosophy according to Plato is this, that Socrates doesn't think he knows what he doesn't know, and, as Plato's dialog interprets the oracle's words, that is the only wisdom any human being can have (Apology23b).
And so the form of expression is contradictory, but its meaning of course is not. Socrates has no wisdom other than the wisdom that he is not wise, and so he is both wise and not wise, in different senses of the word 'wise' of course.
The Socratic paradox, namely that the wisest of men has no wisdom beyond knowing that he is not wise, might also be called the Apollonian irony.
Here, you again show in bright, contrasted colours, how ignorant you are about wisdom. YOU are told what to say and do, and YOU consider yourself a wise man therefore, because you DO follow the pattern that Socrates has lain out for you. YOU were told what's wisdom, and YOU do and say following the pattern... and then you accuse me of the same? You fool, pardon me.
Here I will show you how wrong the Delphic riddle's solution by the Apollonian irony is.
Socrates (according to your "Query") knows that he can't claim what he does not know, and therefore he is wise enough to not claim knowledge or wisdom where he lacks it. He therefore calls himself wise, for he knows what he does not know.
This is of course perpetuating the paradox. And Socrates' TRUE claim is misquoted in this explanation. You don't know what you do know and what you don't know. If you only go for sure knowledge, then you are restricted to "Cogito ergo sum" about the real world. Nothing else is knowable about it. Everything else about the real world which is knowledge, is make-belief.
Is this what you and Socrates claim? You think it is. "His entire wisdom in philosophy according to Plato is this, that Socrates doesn't think he knows what he doesn't know, and, as Plato's dialog interprets the oracle's words, that is the only wisdom any human being can have (Apology 23b)." He is not the sole human being believing this, he is the one sole human being who takes credit for believing this. For this is a belief, not a knowledge; you can't actually know what it is you don't know. So he adds the qualifier "I don't think
I know what I don't know." Here he adds an extra layer of cushion between himself and reality; he "thinks", he opines, he believes, he does not claim knowledge.
Your entire point, Nick_A, which you said was that wisdom is knowing what you don't know, and you attributed it to Socrates, is false. Socrates never
claimed that he does not claim knowledge where there is no knowledge to claim. Socrates claimed, instead, a belief (not a knowledge) that he can tell the difference between what he knows and what he does not know.
So Socrates does not even claim what you say he claims, Nick_A. He does not say "this is not knowledge, and therefore I deny this is knowledge; I know this is not knowledge." He says, actually, and the only thing which can be true, but you, Nick_A, have never progressed to the stage of realizing this, "I think this is not knowledge". If you had the amount of wisdom you claim you have, and if you indeed did not claim to know what you don't know, then you would have noticed this incredibly important nuance in Socrates' claim. He does not claim anything; not knowledge, not wisdom. He claims a belief that he possesses knowledge and wisdom. And in doing so he is more right than you have previously, up to this point, thought.
Let me put it in a way that even you can comprehend. Look at the EXACT wording (as you quoted it) what Socrates claims:
"His entire wisdom in philosophy according to Plato is this, that Socrates doesn't think he knows what he doesn't know, and, as Plato's dialog interprets the oracle's words, that is the only wisdom any human being can have (Apology23b)."
You claimed that Socrates can tell the difference between what he truly knows and what he does not; whereas his debating partners lack the wisdom of doing this.
Whereas Socrates, very wisely, remarks, this is a belief for him, his realm of knowledge; and so is the realm of knowledge for his debating partners a belief; there is no difference in the strength of knowledge, other than Socrates realizing that his and his debating partner's claimed knowledge are both actually belief, and he realizes that his debating partners do not realize this.
You and Socrates and Plato, however, forget one thing. It is true that you can't know reality with absolute certainty. But there is a chance, and we don't know how large or how small that chance is, that the reality we experience is the real reality. There is no way of knowing; true. But there is a system of belief, that the reality we experience is the true reality. This is not knowledge, this is belief. The knowledge part comes after, which I believe you, Socrates and Plato deny: that if we regard our belief as knowledge, we can surmise some incredibly useful conclusions, called knowledge about reality. These conclusions are based on an assumption that reality is real. It is not PROVEN that reality is real, but it is assumed. And acting on that assumption can create KNOWLEDGE on a system which may be imaginary only, but which behaves consistently enough that our KNOWLEDGE proves useful and helps us navigate our lives in this world of PERHAPS completely imaginary world.
This is the knowledge which you, Socrates and Plato deny to be true knowledge, or wisdom, and it is yet a wisdom, a knowledge, if you add only one assumption to your observations about the real world, and that one assumption is that what you see is actually what is.
This is what you have not internalized, Nick_A, because you blindly do and say what you are told to say and do, and you falsely believe you are a wise man, because you follow the recipe blindly which recipe tells you what makes a man wise and what makes a man a fool.