By Joseph J. Kockelmans (Editor)
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Additional resources for A Companion to Martin Heidegger's "Being and time"
Arete or justice is to be evaluated by its effect upon the soul of the individual. All individuals as men have souls, which are the source of value or disvalue to the individual himself. In their request that Socrates show the inherent value of justice, the two youths are extending the possibility of the attainment of justice to all individuals. Their plea to Socrates to show the inherent value of justice is designed implicitly to explain to the multitude their error in assigning the sole value of justice to its consequences.
Contrary to many interpretations of Plato's thought, the development of this capacity to its fruition in justice, man's distinctive excellence, does not require knowledge of the fonns. In tenns of the Republic, it does require that individuals live in a society ruled by those who have such knowledge. But this requirement is later modified in the Laws to the necessity of the individual's living in a society ruled by the right kind of laws. The ultimate justification of the polis is to enable the individual to realize his latent capacity.
367 b). A passage later in the discussion of the nature of the justice of the ideal polis makes a similar distinction between justice and the happiness ARETE IN PRE-PLATONIC THOUGHT 39 which justice brings; just before defining the virtues of the polis, Socrates asks how "we may in any wise discover where justice and injustice should be in it, wherein they differ from one another and which of the two he must have who is to be happy, alike whether his condition is known or not known to all gods and men" (Rep.