Plato and Justice

What is justice? By definition it is a quality of being just, fairness. “What being just means in our lives, and whether we should live such a life? ” is a question that Plato tries to address in his “Republic”. In our class discussion we went further asking ourselves which type of life (justified or unjustified) brings happiness to an individual. In this short essay I will to try to answer these questions. Now consider our lives from the moment that we start to think.

From that moment and even before we are taught what is right and wrong, but usage of our reasoning helps us to determine for ourselves the framework of justice. Plato here came to conclusion that “justice exists when everyone is doing his or her own thing”. This means that everyone will do whatever he or she are supposed to do without interacting in other people’s lives can be called just. And that all seems perfectly appropriate, but it does not tell anything about whether living a just life will bring happiness to the person.

This is a part where individuality of a person comes to play. As we mentioned before throughout the life we receive different kinds of information that allows us to set a framework of justice for ourselves. Here education as well our family and relations with society play a major role. However, Plato in the same work derives that there are three main beginnings in all human nature, which are: lust, reasoning and anger. According to author’s “three beginnings of human soul” the last two are the ones that are responsible to control the first.

He explains it by the fact that one will fight against lust with good advises, while the second will be the one that will help reasoning to perform them. Here, it also has to be mentioned that Plato considers lust to take the bigger part in the human souls, which means that greed towards the possessions will always exist in humans; the only thing is how we control it with the other two beginnings. Here it is important to derive how reasoning and anger can allow person to be just.

Plato makes the argument that if the anger will succeed in overcoming the lust the person may be recalled as virile, whereas if it will be reasoning than the person is wise. If they will both come together they will allow person to be reasonable as well. Considering the parallel of the country and the person it can be than derived that person is just.

This concept is a bit hard to understand, but it is a fundamental idea about the creation of the human spirit that afterwards determines whether the person chooses justified or unjustified way in life. Now here is very the tricky bit comes in. As for me, it is important to understand that in order for person to live a happy life he has to choose the level of justice according to his own preferences. This means that there are definitely thousands of different personalities that exist in the world, but each one of them have their own views about what is justice.

So my claim is that if a person feels that what he does is right no matter whether it is right according to moral and social justice he can name himself happy, when he will look at his life. This happens because person will feel that he have done everything that is more or less valuable to him that would fulfill his need, otherwise he be sorry for the things that did not do it in past. These all concludes in the fact happiness and justice do not have correlation with each other and happiness is mainly brought by the things we, as individuals think we have done correctly.