Unit 2 Plato’s “Allegory” Assignment Your Name Here Kaplan University HU250 – 08 In the book The Republic, Plato through “the Allegory of the cave” makes a difference between illusion as a truth and the truth as a reality. In that scenario, Plato used the cave, the flame, the shadow, the sun and the return to the old “world” to demonstrate: That knowledge comes from what we see and hear in the nature, it uses the cave as the hotbed of misunderstanding. He believes that the shadow seen in the wall and being interpreted by the prisoners as the truth is simply the reflection of the truth and that anyone no matter his rank within this “world of truth” is ignorant of the truth in real nature. Plato uses the sun as the light of life for philosophers and the knowledge of people and the period the prisoner spent out of the cave for its first time is seen as the journey of a philosopher trying to understand and establish the different between the “truth” in the cave and the reality. Once the reality established, the prisoner wanted to free other prisoners because he believes they were living a false reality and this persuasion created conflicts.
As Plato explains the differences in our natures, he reflects the life of the prisoners citing “They see only their own shadows or the shadows of one another” (339), as they are tied to perceive only shadows on the back of the cave that are emitted by artificial objects and the light that is thrown by a fire “To them, the truth would be literally nothing but the shadows of the images” (340). Plato then explains how the prisoner would react when taken out from the darkness of the cave to the light of reality. With enlightenment a prisoner might be turned to see first the artificial objects, then the fire, then the real world, the reflections and last of all the “Sun”. Each stage would be complicated and unfamiliar, and at the end the now enlightened prisoner would be unable to communicate his knowledge to the prisoners still in the depths of the cave, unknown of the real world, the world of forms. It would be similar to the journey in which the pilgrims assemble down in some cave and receive some revelation; if an enlightened pilgrim came to help them they
We know what beauty and justice is without having experienced it in perfect Form so to Plato knowledge was a recollection of what our souls already knew while in the perfect external realm In the allegory of the cave is this. In the cave there a humans who have been chained at the head and the legs so as to only see the wall in which they are placed. The fire behind these figures creates shadows or illusions which the prisoners see as their reality. The objects cast on the wall are projected by people walking past with certain objects such as puppets. They have been in this state since they were born so they have grown into their ignorance.
But once their sight is accustomed to the sight of the upper world, they would disdain returning to their prior condition. The shadows, thrown on the wall of the cave, are analogous to the illusory energy of Krishna. The light of the upper world is His superior energy. Our process, in the spiritualization of energy, is a process of moving out the cave, of turning from maya(illusion) to the spiritual light of the Imperishable. It is easy to see that the prisoners in the cave are conditioned souls bound by material desires, lust and anger.
The chains which are bound to the prisoners represent the mind and how they hold humans captives to what we want to believe because we have been brought up in that way. The fire, shadows and echoes represents the world as we see it. This world is a aposteri this means everything in it are fake and they all have little portion of the real image. As the prisoner who escaped from the cave is trying to get to the surface, he suffers from trying to get to the surface. He must also face the problem of trying to adjust to the sunlight.
Topic: In Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" from his Republic, the vivid imagery of escaping the slavery of our shackled understanding of the world is quite pronounced. Do you agree that escaping the cave is to be desired? What can or should you do to pull yourself or those around you from the cave? The Cave in Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave” represents the world that we live in as we See it and believe it to be in our own reality. Plato uses the description of “Darkness” to possibly imply there are false realities that we each have and uses “sunlight” to stand for being enlightened by the “new world”, which is what the released prisoner was to experience.
While proponents of ignorance would argue that bliss is desirable, bliss based in ignorance is necessarily ephemeral and superficial, and the perpetuation of this blind bliss is both unsustainable and ultimately harmful. The truth is often painful, but with this pain comes clarity. Kafka would describe this pain as a blow to the head – it is a sharp, deliberate pain that forces one to grapple with reality. Plato describes the trauma of sudden exposure to the truth in “Allegory of the Cave,” where he depicts one of the prisoners being “set free and forced suddenly to stand up, turn his head, and walk with his eyes lifted to the light; all these movements would be painful, and he would be too dazzled to make out the objects whose shadows he had been used to see” (Allegory.46-53). The pain the prisoner feels is twofold – the physical pain from sudden movement, and the psychological pain from realizing that everything he
However, both works have some significant similarities in theme. In “The Allegory of the Cave", Plato describes a metaphor that compares the way we perceive and what truely is reality. The main idea behind this allegory is that everything we perceive are imperfect reflections of the true forms. In this story, Plato describes a cave in where prisoners are tied up and forced to look at a wall. The various meanings in the allegory can be seen in the beginning with the prisoners whom are confined within the darkness of the cave.
This happen because the sun is a metaphor for knowledge and the dark cave is a metaphor for ignorance or not knowing anything. In Plato’s text here it shows you where he says the sun is the knowledge. “This entire allegory, I said, you may now append, dear Glaucon, to the previous argument; the prison house is the world of sight, the light of the fire is the sun.” When the prisoners go out of the cave they see the puppeteers and the sun they realize that the shadows on the wall of the cave where not real and that they feel weird for thinking that. They are overwhelmed with all of the truth. When the prisoners return to the cave and see the other prisoner that were not able to leave the cave they start feel like they are a leader or like they have to tell the truth of what is really going on.
They think of the shadows as true reality, this is because the shadows are as close as the prisoners get to viewing reality. The prisoners in this case represent everyone on earth that hasn’t connected to the forms, and therefore connected to reality. Plato believes that the objects we see in the physical world are reflections or imitations of the true ‘form’ of the object in the world of Forms. These reflections are called the ‘particulars’ which Plato believes are a form of reality but not true reality. In the analogy of the cave, one of the prisoners breaks free of his chains and tries to leave the cave in search of the real world.
Initially, Plato is filled his story with symbols that are nearly represent an idea that he wants to explore. First, a metaphor that is represented throughout the story is the cave which symbolizes the human mind. In the story, there are people in the cave who are enclosed in a world where shadows are the meaning of everything and there is no other explanation behind things. Plato states “human being living in an underground den, which has a mouth open toward the light and reaching all along the den…”(1235). Also in the story, it takes a man to get out of the cave for him to realize that he has been taught the wrong things and that the truth was being kept behind the shadows.
Analysis of Platos Allegory of the Cave Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave” presents a vision of humans as slaves chained in front of a fire observing the shadows of things on the cave wall in front of them. The shadows are the only “reality” the slaves know. Plato argues that there is a basic flaw in how we humans mistake our limited perceptions as reality, truth and goodness. The allegory reveals how that flaw affects our education, our spirituality and our politics. The flaw that Plato speaks about is trusting as real, what one sees—believing absolutely that what one sees is true.
The prisoners in this analogy are meant to represent normal people, with their false knowledge/opinions being the shadows. The cave itself is mean to be the physical realm (the world as we see it). The sun is used to represent the form of good (the source of all things); the escaped prisoner’s journey is his ascension into enlightenment, where as the prisoners return to the cave is when the prisoner has already been enlightened and has gained the knowledge. Socrates, student of Plato, describes how he thinks the prisoner would be feeling and thinking during the prisoner’s journey through out the Cave analogy. Socrates describes the prisoners experience as starting out as fear and confusion as he starts to realise that the shadows on the walls are not reality.
In the analogy of the cave there are the prisoners, representing the ordinary, ignorant man and then there is the man who escapes the cave, representing the philosopher’s discovery of true knowledge. Plato explains that the prisoners are in this illusory world because all they see is the shadows cast by the statues on the wall in front of them and so the prisoners believe that the shadows are reality because it is all that they can see. Through this he can apply this to the rest of humanity in that he majority of humanity live in an illusory world where one cannot differentiate between reality and appearance. Just as the prisoners are content in accepting the shadows as reality, people are content in accepting what their senses tell them as facts without questioning the deeper understanding. Plato believed that behind every concept or object in the visible world, there is an unseen reality, which he calls its Form.
In other words, what would happen if people accepted philosophy and become enlightened by it? In the beginning of the Allegory of the Cave Plato represents man’s condition as being “chained in a cave,” with only a fire behind him. He sees the world by watching the shadows on the wall. He sits in darkness with the false light of the fire and does not realize that this way of life is wrong. It merely is his life — he knows no other.
Plato argues that the shadows are equivalent to our five senses deceiving individuals like ourselves. He believes that the objects we see in the physical world are shadowy copy of the true ‘Form’ of that object in the World of Forms. Plato asks us to imagine that one of the prisoners were to be set free. He would struggle to adjust to his new view of the environment and be blinded by the light of the sun. He would quickly realize that the shadows he saw on the walls were not the real objects themselves.
Although both works are in concurrence with the melding of perception and reality, there are as many differences as there are similarities in the authors uses of character, symbolism, and intent. The situations in which the characters are placed is the most distinct similarity between the works. Both characters are placed in a position where they are forced to perceive what is not real, looking at "shadows" of the truth. In Plato's Allegory of the Cave, several prisoners are chained to the ground with their heads bound forward to face a wall. Day in and day out, they are forced to watch the moving shadows made by men pushing figures in front of firelight, not knowing anything of the outside world.
“Allegory of the Cave” is a dialogue between Socrates and Glaucon in “The Republic” written by Plato. In this allegory Socrates describes a dark cave deep down the surface where humans are chained and imprisoned. They could not move their body on either side. All they see is the wall they face in the front of them and the shadows of objects shown by the puppeteers. “The prisoners” in Plato's cave prefer to remain as prisoners even after they are released from their bonds because they are deceived by their own desires.
In Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" and J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, both authors share the idea that we are chained. Until we are unchained, we will believe in what we see and hear. Plato talks about how being chained for so long can have many consequences, but at the same time, you can still gain a vast amount of knowledge, while Rowling tells about how the things you hear and see aren't always the full truth for the truth is hidden in memories. Because the things we see are merely shadows, we must embrace the darkness for answers. Most people live their life with a cloud over their eyes.
“The Cathedral” and “The Allegory of the Cave” are two short stories that resemble each other in the need to break free from negative illusions. In the “Allegory of the Cave,” Plato describes a man named Socrates who describes an illusion. This illusion included prisoners in a cave who have been chained by their arms and legs. These prisoners are bound to the floor and unable to turn their heads to see what goes on behind them. The prisoners are only able to see what the puppeteers are casting on the wall, which they perceive as reality.