The most famous and well-known Athenian philosopher Socrates and the Prince Arjuna of the Hindu both share a unique character that defined their point of actions in life. Every person has an inner voice which we use to make ethical decisions in life. The moral values that guide life are both learned and instinctive. The main idea in the conversation between the Prince Arjuna and Socrates is about the aspect of conscience. Conscience is defined as the part of the mind that makes an individual aware of their actions as being either morally wrong or perhaps a feeling that something is morally right or wrong. Therefore, one could possibly argue that they talked to a strange voice in their head that controlled their respective paths through the enlightened inner conversation. Thus, the essay will compare an aspect of Krishna’s advice to Prince Arjuna in the Bhagavad Gita Daimonion to Socrates’ while examining the philosopher’s interactions with the divine messengers. It also addresses how an individual ought to act based on the philosophical texts.
Despite the similarities, Socrates and Krishna had a number of differences. Socrates believed in individualism while Krishna believed in collectivism. Socrates was being guided by Daimonion a principle of being control by an inner being while Prince Arjuna was being guided by Krishna. Therefore, according to Socrates an individual should think and act for themselves and also draw their own conclusions through the inner mentor. Moreover, Socrates also believed that a wise person takes responsibilities for their actions. On the other hand, Krishna believed in the aspect of determination and not in free will in contradiction to Socrates. Moreover, Krishna believed that a wise person does not take responsibility for the actions but instead separates himself from the consequences. For example, Krishna tells Prince Arjuna to enter battle without thinking about the consequences that might arise after the battle. Additionally, Krishna has a strong belief that one should be concerned with the outcome of an action but only on the aspect of the action.
Krishna gave Prince Arjuna the moral freedom to choose what he felt was right by asking him to find his inner self. This provides the mirror for the yogic philosophies and beliefs about Prince Arjuna requires in making a choice on the right path without any bias from the advisor. Based on the conversation, I believe that Krishna’s advice is just wise since it allowed Prince Arjuna to pick the path he saw was fit. Basically, Krishna’s advice explains how each one has individual control over their emotions and actions and most importantly on their destiny. Therefore, it is our choice to do good or evil which is not based on what other people say or not. On the other hand, in the world of Socrates, an individual should be guided on what to do which is contrary to the aspect of telling Socrates into obeying. Therefore, based on this option one can be misled by the conscience and an individual should act based on what he or she thinks is morally right.
The two philosophers through their conversation bring out a diverse outlook of making the decision. According to Socrates, there is always an inner-conscience that will always give direction on what an individual should do. However, Prince Arjan seeks advice on what to do and Krishna tells him to act without fear of the consequences. This provides an array for an individual to act without limitations in the society.