Plato's Allegory Of The Cave Research Paper

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An Exploration on the Ultimate Reality
Plato’s Allegory of the Cave


Submitted to
Professor Eric Desjardins

October 28th, 2015

University of Western Ontario
Plato’s big idea in The Allegory of the cave is metaphysics. This paper will discuss Plato’s claim of the material world and the immaterial world. It will question the idea of two worlds, as material object is needed to understand the form of the immaterial. Plato states that there is constant change in the material world, but the immaterial world stays constant. This is because we learn things through the ultimate reality, found in the immaterial world. Thus, the reality we perceive in the material world is not the
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He describes the chained prisoners seated inside an isolated cave. The prisoners are made to only see shadows casted by a fire inside the cave. The chains of the prisoners illustrate the boundaries and the prisoners’ lack of understanding of reality, as they are kept restrained by an outside force. The shadows shown to the prisoners are an imperfect representation of what they presume reality to be. Their reality is the casted shadows as it is all they can see being bound by chains. Hence, Plato concludes that we should not trust our senses like the prisoners, as what they see is not…show more content…
It talks about the differences between the two worlds, the immaterial and the material, and Plato’s insistence that one is better than the other. Plato opines that the immaterial world is the better of the two as it is a constant, and we should strive to be a part of that world. Plato’s desired reality gives rise to the ethical issue of personal choice, in which the prisoner must decide to help the others escape the cave or to keep this new reality to himself, meaning they would have to accept the material reality as the truth. In objection though, Aristotle believes that the idea of the form or object comes from the object it self with the help of our senses. Though there are some aspects Plato did not address in The Allegory, the ultimate reality illustrated from being freed of the chains of our material reality require us to first accept this world, before we can move towards the other
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