"And the true philosophers, Simmias, are always occupied in the practice of dying, wherefore also to them death is terrible." Socrates
What is wrong with Socrates drinking the hemlock? David Hume discussed how committing suicide is not a transgression to God. He said: "All events, in one sense, may be pronounced the action of the almighty; they proceed from these powers with which he has endowed his creatures." Drinking the hemlock might be the very thing God had planned for Socrates, so refusing to drink the hemlock would acting against God himself not the death that occurs afterwards. In The Enchiridion, Epictetus made a few references to death and even mentions Socrates. He begins his fifth point by saying that man is disturbed by their assumptions of things. He then says: "Death, for instance, is not terrible, else it would have appeared so to Socrates." Socrates was a great man of wisdom, if the Gods intend him to live, this situation would have never been presented to him.
Good Point however, it is also stated that going against death may alter what God has planned as well, so who is to say that socrates killing himself is what is wanted. Socrates does in fact say that he basically isnt afraid of death and that death is a way to free onself from any pain and chooses death over exile. Although socrates didnt see death as a bad thing, he had reason to live. Socrates was viewed by many others as a wise and intellectual person, a prophet even. He was considered a prophet by most people and although some people didnt always agree with him, socrates was always capable of persuading people. I believe it was said in the Apology that no man was wiser than socrates himself. Socrates even went out and searched for people whom he thought had to be wiser than himself and came to conclusion that was not at all true. The Delphi was correct in saying that Socrates was the wisest man. Socrates spread his wisdom to younger people even though others didnt approve of it.
In the apology Socrates actually downplays being exiled. He says: "And if I say exile (and this may possibly be the penalty which you will affix), I must indeed be blinded by the love of life if words, have found them so grievous and odious that you would fain have done with them, others are likely to endure me. And what a life should I lead, at my age, wandering from city to city, living in ever-changing exile, and always being driven out!" Socrates was no longer a young man that would be able to handle banishment and have to survive on his own. He is very much so wise, but his age shortens his survival rate. If he would have just received imprisonment, his age would not have allowed him to survive very long in conditions he is not use to. He has no money to pay a fine, which he mentions in the apology. The only thing to do is accept death and know your legacy would be passed on through the young minds he educated before he was met with such a harsh decisions to make.
The reason why Socrates felt as though dying would be a better option than death was because if he would've been able to escape exile,he might of looked guilty. He didnt want to appear as a criminal to the athenians and others. Death was the only way socrates couldnt deal with his problems. The Athenians disapproved of the way Socrates taught the youth and what he believed in, this means that either way the athenians wouldve ound him to be guilty. If Socrates would have considered life, he could've carried on his beliefs where ever he ended up after exile. Not drinking the hemlock could've offered socrates a new life, an opportunity to start over and create new philosophies. Socrates didnt fear death however he did not fully consider the possibilities of life in exile. His life at home would have been over, but he could have been reborn somewhere else. Socrates really didn't have to drink the hemlock
In my quote above, Socrates himself talked about how hard he would suffer in his old age, while being exiled. Wandering place to place with no real to settle and begin a new life would have killed him anyway. No one to teach or give any words because he wouldn't be comfortable is torture. Fighting the death penalty of course is human nature especially since he knew he was innocent. Socrates was a phrophet who was extremely smart, so he knew that no matter what punishment was given the end result would be death. Instead of making it difficult he should just accept death instead of cheating it.
I chose the opposing arguement because, Socrates states that he does not fear death. He implies that death should come peacefully, however,drinking the hemlock is the opposite of dying "peacefully" socrates is actually causing harm to himself. Drinking the hemlock means that Socrates accepts his crime that he didnt commit. Socrates believed in living just, by him drinking the hemlock, socrates shows he is living by breaking the rules of the laws of the athens and he has to face the challenges and consequences of his actions of being a great prophet to the youth.