Protagoras and Meno - Section 7, line 352-362 Summary & Analysis

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Section 7, line 352-362 Summary and Analysis

Socrates says the problem is identifying the role of knowledge. He asks, Is a man's knowledge the controller of a man's activities? Or is one seized by pleasures, attacked, and racked with pain, and these forces are what determine what a person does in their life? Then knowledge is only a secondary element in human life. Many things can be pleasant, such as sex or eating, but lead to unpleasant consequences. Socrates and Protagoras agree that these pleasures or other pleasures can be harmful and can cause poverty and disease in some cases. Therefore, immediate pleasure can cause long-term pain. Likewise pain must often be accepted because it leads to a greater good. This includes the pain of undertaking a starvation diet, going on a military campaign to protect one's country, physical exercise and other such things...

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