• Remmelt
    5
    Dear members, upon rereading Plato's cave analogy, I started to wonder: Could the analogy not also be reversed? I.e. the philosopher being the only one having been inside the cave, while the rest of the people stayed outside. The philosopher claims he has seen the truth behind the appearance of things, namely their shadows.
  • TheMadFool
    3.8k
    Yes, could it be that Plato was inside his own cave, thinking he wasn't.
  • Remmelt
    5
    Yes, calling it Utopia. The world outside the cave certainly cannot be Plato's world of forms/ideals
  • Beebert
    569
    That is What I have been trying to say about Plato
  • TheMadFool
    3.8k
    In Plato's defense, to ask the question ''am I dreaming?'' is an indication of greater awareness than someone who doesn't ask this question.
  • Beebert
    569
    Very true. But I say once again, did Plato escape from being a Don Quixote?
  • TheMadFool
    3.8k
    did Plato escape from being a Don QuixoteBeebert

    :D no
  • Agustino
    11.3k
    That is What I have been trying to say about PlatoBeebert
    >:O
  • SomXtatis
    15
    It is only an analogy, so I wouldn't be surprised of another possible interpretation for it, but that hardly matters. Explaining an analogy is one thing, grounding the explanation on something is another.

    As for my opinion on the possible other explanation... My house, my computer, and my body are all both big and small. Water at one temperature can feel hot and cold at the same time. There is then bigness and smallness, hotness and coldness, and they're mixed together in some things. It's not that the sensation of things disappears as we analyse it, so we have the sensation and the ideas of which it seems a mix of. This is looking at more than the outline, the shadow that doesn't show the parts as different in quality, like in a sensation, but it doesn't mean we don't see it.

    If the ideas are "shadows" of sensible things, there is a reason for them, so knowing them is knowing more than only the things perceived, so the philosopher is not the one in ignorance. If the ideas are creations of a philosopher, then is there no bigness and smallness? Not as ideas, but in things and their relations, someone says--the creation, I suppose, being a universal idea abstracted from particular cases and claimed to be more true than them. But the particulars can't be dealt with without universals, and x having the property of being bigger than y appears to mean very little if there is no such thing as bigness. So I'd suggest that the idea is a necessary companion to the sensible thing, and the one who can distinguish it knows more than the one that cannot, thus leaving philosopher closer to a true view o the world.

    This just to show why I think that the philosopher is not the one looking at shadows; I don't consider myself to understand Plato.
  • Remmelt
    5
    Very thorough and very modest. I need to think about it. My first impressions are:

    Only an analogy? If the interpretation can be reversed, we got work to do.

    The sensation is first, the analysis comes after. The analysis never fully grasps the sensation. Hence the cave reversion.

    I don't see any reason for shadows. Bigness and smallness only appear in comparison.

    Modern-day philosophy probably beats the crap out of all this classical stuff, and I would like to hear about it.
  • Remmelt
    5
    If the world inside the cave represents normal everyday life, then the world outside the cave must be (according to Plato's philosophy), the world of ideal forms. Do you agree?

    My trouble with the analogy lies not in the analogy itself. It is in the presumption which makes the analogy useful, namely the existence of a world behind the world.
  • Remmelt
    5
    Judaism + Plato = Christianity
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