Socrates And Nietzsche's Expression Of The Lion In Every Man

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Another thing Socrates is famous for is his twisting of nature in a paradoxical way to serve his own desire to persuade: to Socrates, virtue, wisdom, and eudaemonia are directly linked, a recurring idea in many of his dialogues. His definition of happiness and morality is far different from anyone else’s, especially from Callicles’ and Nietzsche who believes that the law of nature takes over (also perceived this way by Nietzsche). E.R. Dodds mentions the idea that Nietzsche finds a reflexion of himself in Callicles, ascetic Socrates’ most interesting interlocutor in the “Gorgias”. Interesting in the fact that Callicles appears to be a purely hedonistic personage, whose definition of a good life is one where all pleasures of the body are maximised,…show more content…
Nietzsche, just like Callicles, accuses today’s society of taming the beast, the lion in every Man as mentioned by Dodds: “Callicles’ vivid image of the lion whom society vainly seeks to tame (483e-484a) may fairly be said to haunt the pages of Nietzsche.” Greed and gluttony only seem to be sought by Callicles and a strongly accepted idea by Nietzsche. The animal in us must not be “denatured” but left roaming, free of the moral standards of society, be it Greek or modern. The many, the “hoi polloi”, are blind followers of the morality imposed on them by laws. Socrates defends them to the extreme while Callicles simply regards them as weak who could not get up and get what they truly wanted. To Callicles, the many are lazy citizens with a sort of layer of fat around their desires slowing them down and comforting them. Nietzsche feels the same way. As mentioned by Dodds, the crowd who abides by the concept of equality and moral laws are just exhibiting a defense mechanism towards the ferocious few for them to be able to feel better about themselves and live in society. Socrates and Callicles discuss their separate ideas on the matter of
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