The Myth Of The Cave

1391 Words6 Pages
Michael Neal Dan Williamson Philosophy 10 December 14, 2015 The Myth of the Cave What is real, what is not, how can I really know the world around me? These are simple questions that philosophers have pondered on for hundreds of years. This type of questioning falls under the topic of metaphysics which deals with two broad questions of what is there and what is it like? Philosophers that discuss metaphysics question what we perceive in this world and attempt to clarify the sensations that we feel. Plato a renowned philosopher and student to Socrates had his own theories when it came to metaphysics. Plato believed that the world we perceive is a mere copy of an even greater reality that can only be unlocked by ideas and not material…show more content…
While passing the opening these objects from the outside world project echoes and shadows that the prisoners hear and see. The prisoners then begin to name these shadows and echoes and believe this to be what the world is since they are so defined. One day, one of the prisoners is freed from his chains and he explores outside of the cave. When he first leaves he is blinded by the light from the sun, and turns away from the light however his former reality is less clear to him now. So he ventures out into the world, the light disorientates him at first. He is then told that the objects that are around him are real and that the shadows that he was so familiar and believed were real, were simply reflections. This confused him since the objects reflections or shadows were more clear to him. However slowly his eyes begin to adjust and he is able to look at reflections in the water, then at the objects themselves and finally at the sun itself which illuminated everything. Having discovered this new reality he goes back to the cave to enlighten his fellow prisoners of this new world, but when arriving his eyes no longer adjusted to the darkness can not see the former shadows as clearly. The prisoners because of his loss of clarity think that he has become stupid or blind from his release since he can not see his former reality anymore. They refuse to allow him to free them or take them out of the cave. Plato uses
Get Access