True Opinion v. Knowledge

Socrates: So correct opinion is no less useful than knowledge?

Meno: Yes, to this extent, Socrates.  But the man who has knowledge will always succeed, whereas he who has true opinion will only succeed at times (Meno, 97c).

Haven’t you noticed that opinions without knowledge are shameful and ugly things?  The best of them are blind – or do you think that those who express true opinion without understanding are any different from blind people who happen to travel the right road?  They’re no different (Republic, 506c).


Socrates points out that there is a difference between true opinions and knowledge. That difference is key to healing depression.  Why? The power that accompanies true opinions and knowledge is that of a different power.  One has the power to physically move the body, while the other does not.  How?

To understand How & Why, one has to understand that thoughts have a process; they must be tied down, and then power accompanies them.

Lets Continue….

Meno: That appears to be so of necessity, and it makes me wonder, Socrates, this being the case, why knowledge is prized far more highly than right opinion, and why are they different?

Socrates: Do you know why you wonder, or shall I tell you – By all means tell me!

Socrates: That they to run away and escape if one does not tie them down but remain in place if tied down. – So what?

Socrates: … What I am thinking of when I say this? True opinions, as along as they remain, are fine thing and all they do is good, but they are not willing to remain long, and they escape from man’s mind, so that they are not worth much until one ties them down by (giving) an account for the reason why.  And that, Meno my friend, is recollection, as we previously agreed.  After they are tied down, in the first place they become knowledge, and they remain in place.  That is why knowledge is prized higher than correct opinion, and knowledge differs from correct opinion in being tied down.

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9 comments on “True Opinion v. Knowledge”

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