Essay PreviewMore ↓
Truth is like trout. Slippery, it becomes difficult to grasp tightly in any attempt to catch it, and is even more difficult to show to other people, in that when one holds it up for scrutiny it is often lost in the struggle to do so. "Jumping Mouse" and Plato's "The Allegory of the Cave" have a common theme in the form of the search for truth, and showing this truth to the unenlightened. They vary greatly, however, in the carrying out of their exposure of truth, and more, their view of truth and how it is to be handled.
In the ancient story of "Jumping Mouse", Mouse finds his way to the river and medicine through his ability to literally jump past his fears and see the sacred mountains. When he does so, he catches a glimpse of a personal vision that is to drive him through the remainder of the story, and eventually to a higher plane when he is changed into an eagle. This vision is everything to him from that point on, and he strives from then on to reach it. After he has seen it and fallen into the river, he returns to where the rest of the mice are busy with the same thing they did when he left. They are enthralled in their narrow worlds and views, and so treat him with fear when they see him. They choose to make a story to explain his physical change, an excuse to stay away from him, possibly because they fear the ideas of change he brings back with him.
On the most basic level, Jumping Mouse at that point threatens their existence. They are mice, and defined by the fact that they are ever busy: burrowing and nesting and foraging; Jumping Mouse comes back with the idea that this might not be the only thing to life. Obviously they cannot simply drop everything they had known to that point and take up his view, so they instead rejected him.
Plato's "Allegory of the Cave" is similar in that a fabled and nameless man who had been chained to his illusions was set free and saw the true nature of all that was around him, outside of the cave. When he hypothetically returns to try to tell those who are still chained there of the outside world, and how everything they see is only the faint shadows outlining the true nature of reality, they reject him outright.
How to Cite this Page
"Plato's Allegory of the Cave and Jumping Mouse." 123HelpMe.com. 12 Nov 2019
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Plato’s allegory of the cave, located in Book VII of The Republic is one of the most famous allegories in which he has created. This simile touches base on a number of philosophical ideas which Plato developed over the progression of The Republic (Plato, G.M.A Grube, 1993), the most noticeable being the dividing line. The dividing line is the point between the world of ideas where we live and the world of the forms which is in the heavens. This allegory of the cave helps people understand the theory on which philosophy is based.... [tags: Plato, Allegory of the Cave, analysis]
2640 words (7.5 pages)
- Plato's The Allegory of the Cave In Plato’s “The Allegory of the Cave,” he suggests that there are two different forms of vision, a “mind’s eye” and a “bodily eye.” The “bodily eye” is a metaphor for the senses. While inside the cave, the prisoners function only with this eye. The “mind’s eye” is a higher level of thinking, and is mobilized only when the prisoner is released into the outside world. This eye does not exist within the cave; it only exists in the real, perfect world. The “bodily eye” relies on sensory perceptions about the world in order to determine what is reality.... [tags: Plato Allegory Cave Essays]
811 words (2.3 pages)
- The Allegory of the Cave by Plato "The Allegory of the Cave," by Plato, explains that people experience emotional and intellectual revelations throughout different stages in their lives. This excerpt, from his dialogue The Republic, is a conversation between a philosopher and his pupil. The argument made by this philosopher has been interpreted thousands of times across the world. My own interpretation of this allegory is simple enough as Plato expresses his thoughts as separate stages. The stages, very much like life, are represented by growing realizations and newfound "pains." Therefore, each stage in "The Allegory of the Cave" reveals the relation between the growth of the mind an... [tags: Plato Allegory Cave Philosophy Essays]
1122 words (3.2 pages)
- Plato defines wisdom as the constant pursuit of knowledge in his dialogue The Republic Plato illustrates his idea of forms through an analogy, the allegory of the cave. In this dialogue, Plato exemplifies wisdom and inadvertently creates an analogy that is applicable to modern day Christianity. In Plato 's allegory, there are many examples of individuals who display the characteristics of one he would presume wise. In his allegory, there are two groups of people; those who are in the cave and those who are outside the cave.... [tags: Plato, Virtue, Wisdom, Christianity]
863 words (2.5 pages)
- In Republic book VII Plato explains his analogy of the cave (an analogy is a simple story that has metaphorical meaning). Plato uses the analogy to help describe his philosophical position on the main difference between the physical world and the World of Forms (WoF). He believes that his analogy could clearly explain to others why the physical or world of sense experience was nothing but an illusion; that true reality must be found in the eternal unchanging World of Forms. Plato’s analogy begins in a cave.... [tags: Mind, Reality, Epistemology, Plato]
926 words (2.6 pages)
- The basic premise of Plato's allegory of the cave is to depict the nature of the human being, where true reality is hidden, false images and information are perceived as reality. In the allegory Plato tells a story about a man put on a Gnostics path. Prisoners seating in a cave with their legs and necks chained down since childhood, in such way that they cannot move or see each other, only look into the shadows on the wall in front of them; not realizing they have three-dimensional bodies.... [tags: Plato's Allegory, Human Nature]
1131 words (3.2 pages)
- An Analysis of "The Allegory of the Cave" by Plato The Allegory of the Cave is Plato's explanation of the education of the soul toward enlightenment. He sees it as what happens when someone is educated to the level of philosopher. He contends that they must "go back into the cave" or return to the everyday world of politics, greed and power struggles. The Allegory also attacks people who rely upon or are slaves to their senses. The chains that bind the prisoners are the senses. The fun of the allegory is to try to put all the details of the cave into your interpretation.... [tags: Philosophy Plato]
5691 words (16.3 pages)
- Applying Plato's Allegory of the Cave to Oedipus Rex, Hamlet,and Thomas Becket Plato was one of the greatest philosophers of all time. He is recognized all over the world as one of the greatest minds of all time. Knowledge is required under compulsion has not hold on the mind.(Durant 24). Plato's dialogues are the fruit of a rare mind; but the could not have kept their perennial freshness if they had not somehow succeeded in expressing he problems and the convictions that are common to Plato's age and to all later ages.... [tags: Plato, Philosophy, Philosophical]
1642 words (4.7 pages)
- “Jumping Mouse” The story Jumping Mouse is a Native American tale that is told with many central themes in mind. The story was most likely told to a wide ranged age group. So with the multiple themes it most likely was design to touch home with all ages in some form or another. One of the more central themes however was the importance of the situations and animals that help Jumping Mouse on his journey. The animals that he meets are much the same as people and situations we have met or well meet in our lifetime.... [tags: essays research papers]
1147 words (3.3 pages)
- Jumping Mouse The story of Jumping Mouse may seem simple at first. But it is far more than just a story about a small rodent. There are so many underlying themes that reflect society, faith, generosity, personal growth, and many other aspects of a person’s daily life. The story starts out with a seemingly simple mouse, who hears what others do not. He dares to question what is out of the ordinary, and seeks out the truth instead of dismissing it as nothing. He shows curiosity, which leads him to new ideas.... [tags: essays research papers]
758 words (2.2 pages)
In this way the two stories coincide. Upon returning with the truth, both parties are rejected by those who previously had accepted them. The reason for this is similar: fear of change. The fear of change is derived as all similar situations are; fear that comfort felt in one's present situation will be lost in the new situation. Possible benefit weighs very low in one's mind compared to tangible benefit. So the result is a lack of belief from those with whom the two characters normally associated.
Rather than simply accepting that they could have been wrong, the characters both look elsewhere to deal with this spurning of ideas. This is the point at which the stories diverge in path and view. "Allegory of the Cave" takes the stance that this enlightenment, the only real truth, must be shared with others without rest until all are converted. "Jumping Mouse" seems to say that one must go out and reconcile in one's own life the affect that this truth has on the person, rather than everyone seen.
In "Allegory of the Cave", Plato in all ways sets up in description the truth as being a higher plane of enlightenment than is achieved by the normal man. By describing it as the "light" and the alternative to truth as a form of "captivity", he sets up the prisoners below as being chained to their weak ideals. In a demeaning tone he speaks of how the chained men have contests among themselves to pick out quickly what they believe to be reality, but which is only a shadow, as is everything they see.
When the freed prisoner is returned, he attempts to convince the others of what he saw, and Plato backs out when they refuse to listen, so that he may tie it in to his own example, as though he has found the only higher truth. By virtue of his setup, there can be no arguing as to the validity of another "truth", because it becomes difficult to argue that there is another valid form of reality, of sunlight or voices, that we do not perceive. Plato designed his allegory to focus on the idea of truth, rather than the thought that multiple truths may exist. This fits well into Plato's theory of one higher truth, but it is a view not necessarily shared by all, and so makes weak ground upon which to base one's argument.
By contrast, "Jumping Mouse" takes a completely different course. When the other mice expel him from their society in fear, Jumping Mouse does not spend his time attempting to convince the rest of the mice that his is the right way to do things, only continues to live, to find that it is the most opportune way for him to survive, and that in the end, for him, it holds great reward, when he changes form entirely to that of an eagle. He does not spend needless time trying to turn the close minded mice from their paths, only goes on in his own path.
This is the more feasible alternative to take-- that of living one's own life despite what others say-- as it provides more opportunity for further personal enlightenment. Since a degree of comfort is obviously provided before enlightenment occurs (otherwise everyone would spend their time looking for this enlightenment, or grab at it when someone else offered), it seems as though those who would not accept the truth that those who see it would offer should be let alone to their lives, since they have found a relative degree of happiness as they are.
Plato's view is slightly less accepting of other views, and therefore inadvertantly alienating in a subtle way. The story of Jumping Mouse is, conversely, more applicable to life, despite the fact that its main character is a small foraging rodent. Both deal similarly with truth and inacceptance of it, however, and both have themes which ring true for us today. This truth may be found with only a little effort, slippery as it may be at times.