Sunday, June 3, 2012

Test Of Three

In ancient Greece (469 - 399 BC), Socrates was widely lauded for his wisdom.

One day the great philosopher came upon an acquaintance, who ran up to him  excitedly and said,
"Socrates, do you know what I just heard about one of your students?"

"Wait a moment," Socrates replied. "Before you tell me,
I'd like you to pass a little test. It's called the Test of Three."

"Test of Three?"

"That's correct," Socrates continued. "Before you talk to me about my student let's take a moment to test what you're going to say. The first test is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

"No," the man replied, "actually I just heard about it."

"All right," said Socrates. "So you don't really know if it's true or not. Now let's try the second test, the test of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my student something good?"

"No, on the contrary..."

"So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me something bad about him even  though you're not certain it's true?"

The man shrugged, a little embarrassed.

Socrates continued, "You may still pass though because there is a third test - the filter of Usefulness.
Is what you want to tell me about my student  going to be useful to me?"

"No, not really..."

"Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell me is neither true nor  good nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?"

The man was defeated and  ashamed and said no more.

This is the reason Socrates was a great philosopher and held in such high  esteem.

97 Comments:

Unknown said...

I like this test of 3 "Before you talk to me about my student let's take a moment to test what you're going to say. The first test is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

illuminatiscott said...

And why Socrates never found out his wife was sleeping with the student.

illuminatiscott said...

And why Socrates never found out that his wife was sleeping with the student!

Anonymous said...

Actually I heard this as a joke.. The Final line was "This is the reason Socrates never found out that his student was banging his wife"

Anonymous said...

that's also why socrates never found out his student was boinking his wife.

Anonymous said...

this is great

Maximus-Primus said...

not its the reason he was condemned to death

RAN IN JAN said...

truly he was genius ...man of thought.

Anonymous said...

Unless it was true and Socrates never bothered to check and turns out his student had been fucking his wife the whole time. Poor Socrates.

Anonymous said...

What if Socrates's wife was possibly cheating on him, and this poor man had come to tell Socrates about this?

Unknown said...

true good and useful are all subjetive terms... c'mon Sokratis you should know that

Unknown said...

true good and useful are all subjetive terms... c'mon Sokratis you should know that

thiefofvoid said...

the version I heard was that Socrates never heard that his wife was cheating on him

Anonymous said...

This is also why Socrates was put on trial, lost, and was put to death by the city of Athens.

Anonymous said...

Today, you just put it on facebook...

The Android Doctorr said...

So the man said "But Socrates, I think he's been sleeping with your wife"

This is the reason Socrates beat the shit out of one of his students.

The Android Doctorr said...

"But Socrates, I think he's sleeping with your wife."

This is the reason Socrates beat the piss out of one of his students.

Unknown said...

Actually it's the reason Socrates never found out that Plato was sleeping with his wife.

Unknown said...

Actually it's the reason Socrates never found out that Plato was sleeping with his wife.

Anonymous said...

cute but of course - Socrates never said this

Unknown said...

he was also executed by his own people.
just saying..:)

Unknown said...

he was also executed by his own people.
just saying..:)

Anonymous said...

And the joke continues as follows:
This is the reason Socrates was a great philosopher and held in such high esteem, but also the reason why he never found out that his student was sleeping with his wife...

Anonymous said...

This is why he never knew Plato was shtupping his wife.

Anonymous said...

and boring!!!!!!!! he would change his mind if he watched "real world"

Donne Bologna said...

Excellent collection!

Anonymous said...

Its also the reason Socrates never found out that Plato was having sex with his wife!

Unknown said...

Have you made sure this is absolutely true?

Unknown said...

You know Socrates was basically sentenced to death right? The esteem he held during his life is debatable; so is his actually life.. We hold him in hi esteem now, but likely because he was such a central figure in the works of Plato.

Anonymous said...

this is what I will ask the next person that wants to tell me something..

Anonymous said...

And he walked away muttering "what a dick"

Anonymous said...

:)

Anonymous said...

after the last line isn't the man supposed to tell him one of his students slept with his wife?

Anonymous said...

I thought the punchline was "And that's why Socrates never found out his wife was cheating on him".

John Henry said...

If, the answer to all the questions was "I don't know," I wonder what Socrates would have concluded?

John Henry said...

Great philosopher indeed!
Does this mean that philosophers do not gossip?

Yogi Bear said...

Jokes are good , Gossip is not .

Anonymous said...

Just an average dude who hated gossip. Which is fair, and everyone should be like this, information that neither seeks truth nor is founded on useful material is worse than poison because it can be consequential, it can be the splash that ripples into other minds and ruins their perception, the causation that leads to hurt and heartache or unjust motives, it is disgusting to tell people things you are unsure of. Do not fill the peaceful empty space of silence with filth.

kaligrafix said...

Should tales & communications be all about these 3 things?! So many best sellers & movies wouldn't have existed. Most 'Great' people are ordinary guys we erroneously gave high place of prominence instead of their mates who are really the great guys. I sometimes wonder is Mandela was the great guy of DeClarke that took a great gamble to released him to become the first Black president when every other white president of South Africa refused to take such risk.

kaligrafix said...

Should tales & communications be all about these 3 things?! So many best sellers & movies wouldn't have existed. Most 'Great' people are ordinary guys we erroneously gave high place of prominence instead of their mates who are really the great guys. I sometimes wonder is Mandela was the great guy of DeClarke that took a great gamble to released him to become the first Black president when every other white president of South Africa refused to take such risk.

Anonymous said...

It's also why he never knew that a student was apparently banging his wife!

Anonymous said...

It's a lesson for all human beings

Anonymous said...

He was also killed because no one likes a smart ass.

Anonymous said...

Excellent--thank you for posting this true, good and useful thing!

Anonymous said...

Politicians should follow this advice.

Anonymous said...

I really seem to miss the point. What's so wise about this? Seems more like arrogant and ignorant to me.

Anonymous said...

Socrates was kind of a dick.

Unknown said...

Socrates, it's no wonder they killed him.

Unknown said...

Socrates, it's no wonder they killed him.

Anonymous said...

paternalistic claptrap

Anonymous said...

That was NOT the reason Socrates was a great philosopher, it's just a silly story. People are dumb.

Anonymous said...

That was stupid as shit.

Saifuddin Merchant said...

The version I had continues with "which is why Socrates never knew of his wife's affair with Plato" :)

Anonymous said...

I have heard
..is it true?
..is it kind?
..is it necessary?

Anonymous said...

And that is why Socrates never knew his student was banging his wife.

Unknown said...

a test of 3....
won't cha gimme 3 steps mister oh gimme 3 steps gimme gimme 3 steps towards the door.
gimme 3 steps mister oh gimme 3 steps and you'll never see me no

Anonymous said...

You forgot the final punchline:

"It's also the reason that Socrates never learned that one of his students was banging his wife!"

Anonymous said...

I just want to know what he heard about the student >_<

Anonymous said...

Didn't realize Socrates was a Buddhist. :-/

melkran said...

porque estas sabias palabras nunca las e escuchado en los lugares donde se supone que uno paga para aprender

Unknown said...

knowing ancient Greek philosophers it probably went more like this:
hey Socrates I hear that-"
Socrates cuts him off and give him this lecture, then:
Ok now that that dreamy shit is out of the way, what did they do?"
Man:"they cried because you banged them, because Socrates banged all of his students. All of them.

Unknown said...

knowing ancient Greek philosophers it probably went more like this:
hey Socrates I hear that-"
Socrates cuts him off and give him this lecture, then:
Ok now that that dreamy shit is out of the way, what did they do?"
Man:"they cried because you banged them, because Socrates banged all of his students. All of them.

Anonymous said...

THERE IS MORE TO LEARN FROM SOCRATES.

Georgi Georgiev said...

Socrates is one of the philosophers who is considered by some to be God sent and is highly venerated in Christian ethics. While being student I was very keen on Socrates. So nice to remember some memories from past

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't the world be a better place if we all practiced this?

Anonymous said...

right on

Unknown said...

politicians running for office need to read this message

Unknown said...

politicians need to read and understand this message

Unknown said...

politicianshould read this before they speak

Unknown said...

politicians running for office need to read this message

Anonymous said...

bullshit, Socrates wasn't held in high esteem during his time, the public thought he was annoying and a threat to society

Anonymous said...

pussy lips

Anonymous said...

roastbeef

Anonymous said...

It also explains why he never found out that his best friend was screwing his wife.

Unknown said...

so, using this story's logic.....is this sh*t even true????

Unknown said...

I truly hate gossip.... great share!!!

Anonymous said...

Just saying that student of his the man was trying to warn Socrates about would be his murderer he herd of a plot to kill him and Socrates wanted not to hear it and died because of that fact

Anonymous said...

Cool, what's the source material. All I can take from this is that it is just a creative short story.

Anonymous said...

And also why he never found out plato was fucking his wife

Hassan said...

Great post! we need another Socrates in our life.

Anonymous said...

If he listened only to true, good and useful stuff,
he never got the full picture.
He just left out the yin from the yang.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic! Thank you for sharing :)

Jack Henry Kraven said...

There would be far less communication going on today if we all had to abide by these three rules.

Unknown said...

source?

Anonymous said...

Socrates was an asshole

Anonymous said...

I don't know if Socrates actually said this, it's neither good nor bad, buts it's useful, I guess. 1 out of 3 then.

Unknown said...

And never learned that his 'friends' were going to hemlock him.

MeinMe said...

True story?

Anonymous said...

But you did not say what he was going to tell Socrates. i am dying to know.

Anonymous said...

And this is the reason why Socrates never knew that his wife is cheating on him. :)

Anonymous said...

"Why tell it to me at all?"

Because it's the opposite of all those things

Unknown said...

Very good article and is useful for sharing among a broad internet.
greetings from us http://Movietube

siennaz said...

As valuable today as it was in his day.

Anonymous said...

My first question is, Is this story true?

Anonymous said...

Probably that's the reason he didn't find out that his wife was cheating on him with that student

Anonymous said...

RIGHT ON

Anonymous said...

Good concept !! One has to verify these three factors before he/she is going to speak about some one else.

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