The Unexamined Life is not Worth Living


TheUnexamined Life is not Worth Living


Thereare various fundamental comportments that emanate from the Socraticmantra ‘unexamined life is not worth living for human beings’(Johnson, 2011). From this Socrates’ rhetoric the strongestaffirmative case relates to autonomy. It is evident that thestatement points that a person must have a sense of autonomy so thatthey are able to mirror on the life. If a person can not reflect oropts not to reflect on their life and values, and as an alternativeare only going through the life motions , then it is can be said withabsolute certainty and sense that your life is not really yours(Johnson, 2011).

Every person is a cog in the greater machinery of the world and to alarge scale the universe, a mere animal. Life experiences happen toevery person, in some case for better while in others for worse, anddepending on the circumstance and environmental factors triggerquasi-reflective reactions (Johnson, 2011). Nonetheless, a personcannot be a true agent unless they stop and probe their own drive,actions and reactions. This not only provides an opportunity to makeadjustment but also enables human being to reshape their characterinto a form of their own devising, and consequently craft a life thatmakes sense to us as we live it. All these processes cannot takeplace if we do not stop to question our drives, our character, ouractions and conduct and feeling towards various phenomena that weinteract with in our immediate environment (unexamined life)(Johnson, 2011). Therefore to live a meaningful life a person mustfirst and foremost declare it theirs, as well as constantly andactively probe (rational self-examination) it to have a big pictureof our life and give it intrinsic value.

Socraticmantra is very fundamental in the learning process of a PHD studentsince it is important that all aspects as pertains to the scope ofthe doctoral programme are well examined so that they have resonanceto the area pursued.


Johnson,D. (2011). Socratesand Athens.Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.