Western Civilization lesson 20

Plato was famous for many reasons, but one was his “Allegory of the Cave” which described his Theory of the Forms. The Allegory of the Cave is a metaphor for real life, depicting a row of prisoners chained to a cave wall, unable to see anything but that which they were facing. These represent all of the people who, unlike Plato, were average citizens. Behind the prisoners, their jailers had lit a fire and were moving objects back and forth in front of it. The prisoners could only see the shadows cast in their line of sight but they spoke about the shadows like they were the real deal. When the prisoners were freed to look around, they saw their mistake. The released prisoners are represented by the philosophers who know that we never see the real object, just imperfect and material representations. Plato’s point was that most people, like the prisoners, only see what they can divine with their senses (because they figuratively chain themselves to the wall by not using their centralized neuroelectric processor) and are not aware of reality or truth.

2nd totally unrelated paragraph

According to Plato, the human soul has three key components. He uses the metaphor of a perfect kingdom to convey these sections and in what proportion they should dominate. He begins with the first and most important part of the city, the king. As the ruler of the people, the king should be genetically perfect, exposed only to good influences, and the smartest of the smart. Like the king, the rational side of the soul leads the others and should be robust in brains. The second part of the city is built up of the guards. They protect the city with their bravery, just like the courageous part of the soul should embody the courage and physical power expected in a man of those times. The third and final part of the city is built of the working class. They are essential to the survival of the city and yet know their place and do not attempt to govern. They represent the appetitive part of the soul which should be indulged in occasionally but not control the entire soul. Keep the keys close because you never know which compartment you’ll need to open in an emergency.

One thought on “Western Civilization lesson 20

  1. Lily

    Hello (: I have read your two essays for Western Civ. 1 and I think they are wonderful. You have a coherent and entertaining writing style. The main idea of each essay is expressed in a creative way.
    I’d also like to thank you for visiting my blog site and commenting on some of my essays. I appreciate it!
    I look forward to reading your future essays.


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