Have you ever had the feeling where you are uncertain if you are awake or is still dreaming? Those are not phrases from a metaphysical book but perhaps a popular Hollywood film “The Matrix.” Nevertheless, freedom is not about having a really good illusion, but about realizing it’s all just an illusion. Furthermore, the philosophies in the movie and the truth borrowed from eastern philosophies from the great philosophers including Plato and Aristotle. There are several similarities between Plato’s “The Allegory of the Cave” and the movie, The Matrix.
They are different but both depict an imprisoned characters finding the true meaning of reality. Furthermore, Aristotle also played his role in supporting the philosophies in the movie. For example, the opinions of Aristotle on reality have been embedded in what he called his “first philosophy,” or what we today call metaphysics. Thus, this essay appeals to the audience through logic, factual data and by providing evidence through Plato, Aristotle, and The Matrix movie about the reality of the human race which is enslaved through human senses and computer-generated world.
Firstly, the human race is enslaved with a false reality through a human or computer-generated world. The human condition is defined as being chained or controlled by the consumer culture, enslaved by computers that would like to exterminate the human race. The philosopher, Plato, for instance, saw reality as occurring throughout the brain. According to Plato, “reality does not make sense or exist until the mind process it.” (Crombie) Thus, truth is based on the mindset and factors that influence an individual.
The phenomenon seems to be the understanding of an object we acknowledge through our mental processes. Plato assumed that natural phenomena were delicate forms of reality and who were weak. Moreover, Plato explains his phenomenon through an example of “Allegory of the cave.” (Wright) Throughout this allegory, humans are chained into a cave since birth and they see nothing except shadows that human has formed. Therefore, all of them consider the cave as their real-world and reality unless someone frees them and discover the world. Plato continues to ask everyone to envision how people who are shackled and chained can discover the real reality and learned to accept it. Thus, many people are unaware of the false reality because they are functioned and enslaved in a computer or human generated world.
Secondly, Aristotle considers reality to be concrete, however, he also states that “reality does not make sense or exist until the mind process it” (Suri) This statement reflects that reality depends on both the mindset and on external factors of the individual. Therefore, if a person’s mind manipulated by the false reality, he will never perceive the world is fake. Furthermore, Aristotle’s perspectives of reality have been embedded in what he called his “first philosophy” and what we deem metaphysics today (Castelli). Metaphysics is the concept given by Aristotle. Metaphysics is a philosophical position that investigates the overarching framework of reality and its foundation. Aristotle, the philosopher as well as Plato’s student, wondered, “Is human free? ” A lot of philosophers believe that we are all independent, but some argue against such a notion. Freedom of will has been one of the key subjects on the above topic. Any action we make seems to be free will. Although good and poor actions do occur. The individual needs to be within his power to allow exercising free will (Keyt). However, human beings lack free will. Although Plato was Aristotle’s teacher, they both had a very opposing point of view regarding metaphysics. Aristotle’s view on reality is that it is accessible by our senses, and there is no other “world” beyond our senses. Thus, humans are enslaved in a reality that is also controlled by human senses.
Finally, the movie ”The Matrix” also highlights the philosophies and it also restates as well as adds to the historical-philosophical inquiries of Aristotle and Plato regarding reality. The movie highlights the concepts of Plato’s Allegory of Cave as well as Aristotle’s metaphysics. The Matrix, a Wachowski fellow’s movie, conforms many modern and traditional ideas regarding the truth behind the reality (Stucky). Thus, The movie’s predominant structure is derived from “Plato’s Cave Allegory.” The Matrix and Plato’s Cave Allegory centered at the same philosophical problem of what is the truth. The leading character, Neo, is imprisoned in the Matrix in a fake world generated by a computer. Machines that take over the world formed a program. Though, in Plato’s Cave Allegory, a prisoner would acknowledge the cave’s reality, as well as the real world outside the cave. They both express a common tale about “epistemological unreliability” senses and the need to separate from senses to obtain truthful information. The reality that both worlds are dominated by a greater authority is another resemblance to which these tales communicate (Roderick). For example, Neo resides in a matrix-dominated world while Plato’s prisoners live in a world, or cave, governed by the people. However, they both also escape from the world as they come to know the true reality and become acquainted with the world as it is. Neo soon realizes that perhaps the life he has lived so far is nothing more than a slave’s life, molded under Matrix control and shielded by agents. Plato’s captive first begins to understand that the images he sees are never the reality, they are only shadows produced by the form holders onto the wall. He recognizes the fire and, when he follows the footsteps it leads him outside the cave where he sees the sun reflected by him (Roderick). Therefore, the central idea of both Plato’s and The Matrix is the concept and reality of restricting knowledge by humankind computer-generated world controlled by a human.
On the other hand, Aristotle questioned the freedom of free will of a human. Aristotle is also known for his metaphysical contributions. Metaphysics is the concept given by Aristotle. Metaphysics is a philosophical position that investigates the overarching framework of reality and its foundation. The film Matrix has many concepts regarding metaphysics. The first concept is, “Is the world real or not?” Clearly, in the film, there are two alternate worlds: the matrix and the real world. Neo character is either positioned in a simulated world, or even in the actual world. This brings us to dispute whether what we are seeing is real or just computer-programmed. The Matrix movie questioned all of us most effectively to reevaluate the explanation “What is real? “The film may not be as simple as the sensory theory of the Cave Allegory and Aristotle. The reality of the matter in the Matrix may not be as evident which causes the presumption about the concreteness of truth to be questioned. Also, the film makes viewers doubt their existence, or what it is for them. The Cave Allegory aided to achieve a thorough understanding of absolute truth as it made so many people aware that they never recognize what truth is unless they are presented to what is a reality. Thus, the movie highlights the enslavement of the human race through a computer or the human-generated world, since the character Neo was either captivated in the fake world of Matrix through machines or in the real world through humans.
In conclusion, the above essay tries to appeal to the audience across reasoning, factual evidence, and proof of the reality of a human race held captive by human senses and the computer-generated world through philosophers like Plato, Aristotle as well as The Matrix film. The philosopher, Plato, for instance, believe that the truth is based on the mindset and factors that influence an individual. Plato presented a case of “Allegory of Cave” where he highlighted the true face of an individual perception against reality. People are chained in the cave and all of them consider the cave as their real-world and reality unless someone frees them and discover the world. On the other hand, Aristotle also questions the truth of reality. Aristotle claimed his philosophy by mentioning metaphysics. Aristotle considers reality to be concrete. Aristotle’s view on reality is that it is reachable by our senses, and there is no other “world” beyond our senses. Finally, we discuss the true face of reality by sharing similarities between the movie The Matrix with Aristotle and Plato’s philosophies. The movie highlights the philosophies and it also restates as well as adds to the historical-philosophical inquiries of Aristotle and Plato regarding reality.
• Crombie, Ian M. An Examination of Plato’s Doctrines Vol 2 (RLE: Plato): Volume 2 Plato on Knowledge and Reality. Routledge, 2012.
• Wright, John Henry. “The origin of Plato’s Cave.” Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 17 (1906): 131-142.
• Suri, Abdul Wahab. “From the discovering of reality to creating multiple realities: the Aristotelian roots of modern anthropocentric.” Biocosmology–neo-Aristotelism 6.1 (2016).
• Castelli, Laura M., ed. Aristotle: Metaphysics: Book Iota. Oxford University Press, 2018.
• Keyt, David. “Aristotle on Freedom and Equality.” Democracy, Justice, and Equality in Ancient Greece. Springer, Cham, 2018. 225-241.
• Stucky, Mark D. “He is the One: The Matrix Trilogy’s Postmodern Movie Messiah.” Journal of Religion & Film 9.2 (2016): 7.
• Roderick, Noah. “How to be a Realist about Similarity: Towards a Theory of Features in Object-Oriented Philosophy.” Open Philosophy 1.1 (2018): 327-341.