Christopher Barrens The Nobility of a Lie Frederick Nietzsche once wrote that the “untruth, Core lie], is a condition of life. “At least in terms of creating a stable society, Socrates would seem to agree. In The Republic, Socrates points out that civilization is most prone to instability when founded on what he calls a”noble lie. “The lie which, despite its falsehood, serves for the good of society. His noble lie can be broken into two parts: a justification on why the lie applies to all of a society’s members and a justification of the role each person serves in their society.
Thus, if subjects believe in his noble lie, instability is abated because those who end up in the working class will be given simple reasoning for why they are where they are in society. That is to say, discontent will be diminished because the noble lie gives reasoning for why those in power are in power. The lie is noble in its attempt to achieve a greater good; however, the lie also contains truth due to the fact that, theoretically, it enables those who should be in power to be in power.
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The concept of the noble lie can be further expanded as its remises, a societal truth founded on a falsehood, can be applied to many different aspects of society. For instance, many people in the U. S. Believe that America is a completely democratic country because that is the noble lie they are told, yet many aspects of American society, such as the disenfranchisement of felons, suggest just the opposite.
Socrates noble lie is justified because it serves to create unity and order; furthermore, his concept of the noble lie can be seen in modern American society, specifically with the concept that America is completely democratic. Socrates noble lie, which is divided into two parts, provides answers to seemingly simple political questions such as, why do call my neighbor my fellow citizen but not a man born in another city, what gives a city validation to claim its territory, and what gives the rulers validation to rule?
He believes that the lie’s necessity lies in the fact that society could crumble if citizens are not able to answer such questions. The first part of the lie attempts to set up a foundation for answering the questions by creating common ground upon which members of a city share an innate bond; thus, the first part of the lie attempts to set up the answers with an assumption of unity that stems from birth. Socrates claims that” the upbringing and education we gave them… Ere sort of a dream, that they themselves, their weapons, and the other craftsman’s tools were at that time really being fashioned and nurtured inside the earth, and… The earth, who is their mother, delivered them all up into the world” (Plato, 14th).