In the Allegory of the Cave there are prisoners are chained up together in which they are all facing the back wall. There is a firing behind the prisoners and the only thing that they can see are the shadows of the people behind them. The fire casts shadows on the wall so this is the only thing that they see. Their entire lives have been based on these shadows on the wall. These prisoners have been chained up since birth, so what they see on the walls is all they know. In the Allegory of the Cave, they let one of the prisoners free and finally able to see the world and feel the heat of the sun. The prisoner has never seen the sun or the colors of the world so once he steps outside; the sun hurts his eyes, and burns his skin. He eventually acclimates, and is able to enjoy everything. Plato uses an Allegory with the relationship between the darkness of the cave and everything that the world has to offer. Plato believed that the human mind has the capability to recognize the ‘ideal forms.’ Plato uses the sun and something good and positive whereas the darkness is dull and haunting. With the sun, there is growth everywhere, light, and color to everything. In the Allegory, after a journey in the real world, the prisoner returns to the cave where he no longer wants to be there. All of the other prisoners believe that the journey ruined his eyes so they do not want to leave the cave.
The Allegory deals with all of the aspects of Plato’s philosophical beliefs. One belief is that the philosophers are the only members of society fit to rule because they are the highest educated. He believes they are able to use the Form of the Good for perception and are better qualified than the rest of the people...
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... the philosopher rulers to be social pyramid, but that would not work in reality because usually we would consider someone’s social ranking dependent on the view of the majority.
When analyzing Plato’s republic and his ideal state, all of the difficulties in creating a perfectly ran society comes to light. His Allegory of the cave attracts a great deal of critics because of its problems when applied to society, but because it is an analogy of the way in which Plato views society it does not appear to work well. Plato does not take account of human nature. In reality, people, particularly in the 21st century are extremely individualistic and opinionated. It is farfetched to believe that strict early education can change this. However that is not to say that philosophers would not make good rulers, perhaps the knowledge philosophers have can help politics, even today.
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