Socrates believes that a true philosopher should not recent death. One of the beliefs he holds
about death is that it is the case where the body is separated from the soul. Socrates believes
that death should only be feared if it has been proved to be bad. He also added that he or no
one else knows that death is bad, and due to that, he believed that death should not be feared.
Socrates believed in facts, and there was no body who could convince him that death was
bad. He believed that it was the separation of the soul from the body. He refers to the fear of
death as the case where an individual pretends to be wise but in real case he or she is not
wise. He also adds that no one can say for sure that he knows death that is taken as the
greatest evil can be of the greatest good. It seems that Socrates has a general principle that
goes with his first premise. The fact that he or anybody else had not proved that death is a
bad thing makes him believe that it is not a bad thing that should be feared. The idea here is
not that a person is supposed to fear anything that he or she perceived to be bad. The idea is
that a person should only fear something when he is very sure that it is a bad thing. Therefore,
according to Socrates, we should not fear death because we are not sure if it is a bad thing.
Fear should, therefore, be reserved for the experiences that are known to be bad. Socrates,
therefore, stretches our minds a bit, and we are left wondering what is meant by knowing
something. We also need to ask ourselves what separates knowledge from mere belief.
According to Nagel, being dead may not be a bad state to be in, but he notes that being alive
is a good state to be in. He, therefore, believes that the fact that death denies a person to be
alive, which he considers being a good thing, then death is a bad thing. He has some reasons
for believing that the time non-existence is not bad and of itself because there is no one in the
world that views the time before he or she was born as a misfortune. It is true that existence
itself is good, and it is also true that people were not worried about the past inexistence. In
my view by comparing the views that were presented by Socrates and Nagel is that death
involves separating the soul and the body and since the soul is immortal, it means that death
in itself does not mean inexistence because the soul will exist elsewhere. Death can,
therefore, be referred to as a transition from one state to the other.
It should be noted that the idea that death is the case where the soul is separated from the
body is a belief because no one has ever seen the separation happening in the first place. The
views about death are, therefore, beliefs that are held by the philosophers. It should also be
noted that no one who has died has ever come back to say what it means to die meaning that
the best the philosophers and the researchers can do is to come up with theories to explain
phenomena. Whether death should be resented or not is a matter of the belief that a person
holds with regards to what death is and the good or bad it brings to an individual in the
Austin, E. A. (2010). Prudence and the Fear of Death in Plato’s Apology. Ancient
Philosophy, 30(1), 39-55.