I have been asked to "Analyze the perspectives of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle on truth." I, like Socrates, "have no claim to wisdom, great or small" (The Apology 21b). Yet I will attempt to answer this request to the best of my abilities.
1) What is the truth?.
Socrates believes that knowledge is virtue and he held virtue, in its many forms, in the highest regard. He believed that truth could only be found in the knowledge of virtue and virtuous behavior. His idea of truth was somewhat ambiguous, as he was always questioning ideas that were considered to be common virtues. In the Apology, he states that he does not know the truth. I interpret that as saying that he can not see the virtue in his situation at that time. .
Plato believed that truth is singular in nature. But, at the same time, he thought it could be found in many forms. Still any form of it would be considered to have a common thread, which is the ultimate truth. .
Aristotle would agree with Plato that there is one truth. He assesses that truth is contained in nature. Nature, being what is, as it exists in its purest form, must be truth because it is the natural order of all things; it can be revealed through empirical evidence. You can not deny it because you can sense it. Plato .
would argue that he focuses too much on the world of shadows, which is based on appearances, rather than the world of light, which is based in thought. .
2) How do we learn truth?.
Socrates believed that truth could be attained by questioning people and situations thoroughly. He developed a method of cross examining individuals who were supposedly wise, to show that they were not. He thought that this questioning would eventually lead to knowledge though, which is virtuous and thereby truthful. .
Plato's view was somewhat different. He declares that to gain truth you must be passionately devoted to seeking it. You must have a love of truth to possess the passion required to be ferverent enough in seeking to actually obtain truth.