For Plato, just like for Socrates, Philosophy was ; A way of life not just a specialised and technical activity in about 387 BC, he attended The Academy lasted for a 1000 yrs. Socrates was only interested in ethics. While Plato was interested in ethics, metaphysics, politics, aesthetics, Mathematics Plato’s Allegory (story in which there is a fact & a true story) of the Cave Plato asks ; “What would happen if one of these prisoners were released from his chains, were forced to stand up, turn around (conversion) and walk with his eyes lifted up towards the light?
” Eventually, he would be able to see the real object for and in itself ; Lifting his eyes upward, he would find it easier to look at the stars at night Finally, he would look right at the SUN in its Natural position in the sky and ; Not at its Reflections from or through anything else How would the liberated prisoner feel about his previous life in the cave? He would recall what his fellow prisoners and himself took to be Wisdom.
He would recall how they used to give prizes to the one who had the sharpest eye for assign shadows and the best memory for the order in which the shadows followed each other. “If they could lay hands on the man who was trying to set them free and lead them up, they would kill him”. The implications of the Allegory ; Many people dwell in the Darkness of the cave … They have oriented their thoughts around the blurred world of Shadows … Education leads people out of the cave of Darkness into the world of light.
(Education means to bring out. (of the cave) ). Just as the prisoner had to turn his Whole Body around so that his eyes could see the light instead of the darkness. It is also necessary for the entire should to turn away from the deceptive world of change and appetite that causes blindness in the should. Education according to Plato is ; A matter of Conversion A complete turning around from the world of Appearance to the world of reality.
” The conversion of the soul is not to put the power of sight in the soul’s eye, which already has it, but to insure that, instead of looking in the wrong direction, it is turned the way it ought to be”. Plato’s rejection for the sophist’ skepticism ; The dark world of the cave ( particular many change finite) , Vs the bright world of light ( light is knowledge for plato sun absolute one permanent / changeless infinity). Dramatic contrast between; 1) shadows > 2) reflections > 3) The actual objects (ultimate knowledge) (process of education ^).
With the Sophists, Plato and Socrates agree that knowledge derived from Sense experience is Relative, but he maintains that ; Not all knowledge is relative therefore, Absolutism Plato’s Divided Line ; (top 2 The world of thought changeless) (bottom 2 The world of Opinion change) (The line that divides every stage is not equal, meaning that it is more difficult to reach from level 3 to level 4 than from level 1 to level 2). (Outside the Cave) (Objects of knowledge).
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