Sample Questions for Dialogue

 
 

For the past five years, students at  Harwood  Union   High School have been leading Socrates Cafe Discussions   in school with their peers, with younger age children in surrounding elementary schools and with adults in community gatherings.   Some of the questions  high school students have brainstormed and discussed  have been the following:

  • What is Virtue?
  • Is Virtue always in the common interest?
  • How do we know what is right?
  • What should every human being know?
  •  Is our understanding of the world limited by our language?
  • Why don’t we say what we really mean?
  • Can we ever be truly honest with ourselves?
  •  Is it ever too late to consider Justice?
  •  Is there a difference between justification and rationalization?
  • Does what you do define who you are?
  • Why do we lie?
  •  Is it ever okay to lie?
  •  If the truth hurts, should we lie?
  • Which is more right, a harsh truth or a comforting lie?
  • Is it every okay to cheat?
  • What is forgiveness?
  • Should one always forgive?
  •  Is it important to be right?
  •  Is there anything that can’t be proven wrong?
  •  Is there anything that can be proven right?
  •  Is it ever morally justifiable to commit murder?
  • Does gender identity influence perceptions of Reality?
  • Does mankind have an essential “human nature”?
  • What makes us human?
  • Is it ever okay to change how you are to be liked by other people?
  •  Is it possible for any action to be completely moral?
  • How do we know what we know?
  • Should we live with regret?
  •  Is disappointment our own fault?
  • Are illusions a necessary part of life?
  •  Do any Absolutes- moral or physical- exist?
  • Is the gap between human desire and human possibility unbridgeable?
  •  What is the relationship between dreams and reality?
  • What is the relationship between human desire and preference?
  • When is it more proper to reflect and when is it more proper to act?
  • Is government a reflection of human nature?
  • Should convicted criminals have the right to vote after their release?
  • Does man have free will or are our lives determined by fate?
  • What is the Soul?
  • Is giving still good if we expect something in return?
  • Is there a difference between rationalization and justification?
  • Why are we afraid of people who are different than us?
  • Do what extend do our beliefs and values determine how we judge other people?
  • Where did life begin?
  • What happens when we die?
  • Is murder ever justified?
  • What does it mean to be insane?
  • Does man really have free will?
  • What is a life “well lived?”
  • Are we all completely unique?
  • What is the role of learning in human development and emotion?
  • Is it more virtuous to be a serious person or a happy person?
  • Are we born with a purpose in life or is life really a random, arbitrary galactic spew?
  • Do we all have the equal capacity to be great?
  • Is it ever virtuous to lie?
  • What about human nature presents the greatest threat to peace?
  • Is there actually “forever”?
  • Why are humans so curious?
  • What created atoms? What created creation?
  • Why do we do the things we DON’T want to do?
  • Does the Universe have a purpose?
  • Are we alone in the Universe?
  • Why do we have religion?
  • What does being strong mean?
  • What determines who we are?
  • How does OUR perception of Reality compare to the TRUE Reality?
  • What makes something sentient?
  • Are humans born inherently good or evil?
  • Is ANYTHING inherently good or bad?
  • What does it mean to have a successful life?
  • Does God exist?
  • If we have the power to change the world, why don’t we do it?
  • Do we have power to change the world and how are we using it?
  • Are we living in a dream?
  • Are we born with morals, or are they learned?
  • How can I inspire others?
  • What is the most important thing I can do in my life?
  • Who AM I?
  • Why are we so  afraid of people who are different?

Socrates Cafe discussions are regular events all around the nation. A Socrates Cafe can be held anywhere – in a school, cafe, church basement, town hall, or wherever people gather together to engage in dialogue. Numerous groups post the questions that they have discussed on line, so check these out!