Forums / Strategies, Tactics & Training / The Socrates Triple Filter Test

8 years 46 weeks ago, 12:20 PM


samD's picture

Join Date:
Aug 2008
Green Valley, Free State of Arizona, United States

Keep this philosophy in mind the next time you are about to
repeat a rumor or gossip. In ancient Greece Socrates was
widely lauded for his wisdom.

One day the great philosopher came upon an acquaintance!
He 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 Triple Filter Test."

"Triple filter?"

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

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

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

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

"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. This is the reason
Socrates was a great philosopher and held in such high
esteem. It also explains why he never found out that Plato
was banging his wife.

8 years 46 weeks ago, 1:29 AM


runawaygun762's picture

Vice President
Join Date:
Nov 2008
Richland, MO, United States
New Triple Filter test

Is this a Strategy?

Is this a Tactic?

Is this Training?

"I have always been a soldier. I have known no other life. The calling of arms, I have followed from boyhood. I have never sought another." From The Virtues of War, by Steven Pressfield.
8 years 46 weeks ago, 9:42 AM


RandyK37922's picture

Join Date:
Apr 2009
What is it?

Maybe not strategy, tactics, or training, but passes the comedy test with shining colors. Sorry.


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