Plato's Theory of Forms

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By meganandnicole
Words 483
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The analogy of the cave is the method that a Greek philosopher named Plato used to describe the philosophical different between the ‘fake world’ in which we live and the world of forms. Plato portrays this message through a story of a group of prisoners in a cave who can only see shadows cast upon the wall in front of them. These shadows are created by puppeteers behind them and they believe that the shadows are reality. The message created through this scene is that the real world is full of illusion which hides reality. It subtly represents the human which confines the soul, preventing it from seeking the truth, in this case, reality and the world of the forms. The analogy represents the entire human race that is yet to seek the philosophical truth. It teaches us that the world in which we live is full of illusion and everything we see is just an imitation of the forms. Each element of the analogy is symbolic and holds a meaning which may not be completely obvious until the analogy is further understood.
We, as prisoners are believed to be rejecting of new ideas and that the actual process of teaching is distressing and difficult due to the fact that when the prisoner is first released he continuously attempts to return to the cave as it is where he feels comfortable. The way the prisoner is dragged up into reality again reiterates the idea that we are all quite narrow-minded and we don’t want to open up to new thoughts and ideas. When the prisoner begins to differentiate between the world of forms and the world of taught perceptions where everything is just a copy he returns to the cave to teach the others of his knowledge. The other prisoners reject his teachings and decide that it is best to remain underground. This demonstrates Plato’s belief that all teachers and leaders of society should be philosophers as they live in the world of forms and have a true…...

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