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The Allegory Of The Cave Turn Around

The Allegory Of The Cave: Turn Around Essay, Research Paper

The Allegory of the Cave: Turn Around

Putting the Allegory of the Cave into my own words seems comparable to

the Christian idea of using the lord’s name in vain. First, I’d like to

introduce a phenomenon I have observed throughout my life time. I call it soul

resonance. Bear with me here. When two objects emit sympathetic vibrations,

the sound or force multiplies. Example: Two tuning forks of the same frequency

are struck upon each other and held a few feet apart. The vibration is much

stronger. Something basic about each object recognizes a similar quality in the

other, and amplifies it. As with so many other laws of science, this law

applies to many other phenomena. I believe this is what people feel when they

first hear the Allegory of the Cave . . . soul resonance. Somehow, something

deep inside tells them that here we have found a singular truth.

The Allegory, taken as the story of one man, narrates his life from

ignorance to enlightenment. He sits within a cave, facing away from a blazing

fire. He stares at the wall opposite him, watching pretty shadow puppets. He

listens to the exotic, wonderful, and large words whispered in his ears by the

puppeteers. He would naturally turn around, or perhaps even stand, but chains

bind him to the ground, and the puppeteers have servants who hold his head in

place. One day, a situation arises where he finds that the chains are broken,

and he stands. This is against the will of the servants, but they have no

physical power over him, if he does not allow it. He turns round and sees the

fire and the puppeteers and then he realizes that all has been lies. He is not

what they have told him. He does not feel what they have said he does. The

fire blinds him. The puppeteers, seeing they have lost another to knowledge,

quickly get rid of him by pushing him into the dark cave that looms off to the

side, hoping for his demise. The man is lost, he has gone from darkness to

light to darkness once again. Something within him tells him to climb, and he

does, scrabbling. He cuts himself many times, and many times he almost falls to

his demise on the rocky ground below. He pauses often. Until there comes a

time when he sees a distant light at the exit/entrance to the cave. When he

sees this light, he is not sure whether this is yet another shadow puppet on the

wall, but it is upward and that is where he must go. When he comes out into the

bright sunlight, he cannot see, the brightness of the sun alone has stricken him

temporarily blind. He stumbles about, closing his eyes for periods of time and

then reopening them, adjusting himself to the light. And one day, he stares at

the sun without fail, and knows.

Let’s start at the beginning. He is in the cave, he is in the darkness

of his own ignorance. Even the light behind him is a false representation of

the glorious sun outside. People have assaulted him with their falsehoods,

telling him what God is, what Ideals are, and what his morals should be. These

are the shadows on the wall, a terrestrial God, money, Law, etc. When he was

young he may have questioned these ideas, but if you say something enough to

someone, they will come to believe it. The man built his own chains, fashioned

them from a forge in his own soul, and soaked them in a barrel of his ignorance.

He learned resignation, and now he sits in an office all day, being unhappy, his

blood-pressure rising. One day he snaps, for it is a drastic force that rips

the chains from the ground. He turns around for the first time since he was

young, and cries. He now realizes the truth, he is not who they have told him

he is. He realizes there are truths inside him that are not the truths of which

they spoke. And he cries, also, for he sees that he and the puppeteers are the

same. He weeps at the realization of his own self-imprisonment, his true nature,

and burns himself upon the fire of his tortured soul, which drags him into the

cave. In the darkness he feels things such as self-pity, depression, and a

great deal of guilt. These are the times that try men’s souls. There are three

options, endeavor to climb, return to the wall, or resign to self-destruction.

The rest is where it becomes hazy in my mind. How can I put into my own

words what I have not discovered, what I have no understanding of? The man

climbs, and he does feel pain in the aimless wandering, but the tunnel is a very

subjective place. It can be either heaven or hell, depending on the mind of the

man. Hope waxes and wanes, and the first view of the light is a critical point

in his journey. Through all the lies and false “faces” of God, how can one

recognize the truth when they see it with their own eyes (own minds). For me,

soul resonance is the key, I listen to all the conceptions of God, keep an open

mind and remember what resonates. Most of the time, it seems I am merely

whittling away using what I know God is not. I fear, of course that when I

finish whittling, there will be nothing left, but the Truth is of highest


Plato divides Everything into two worlds, and each of these two worlds

into two subsections. The lowest section is the World of Images. If I tell you

that money will bring you happiness, and you decide to believe what I have said

with no previous knowledge of either happiness or money, you have been exposed

to the lowest World. Up one level is the World of Objects. If I give you some

money, you can touch it, fold it, eat it, whatever. You learn that you can buy

things with this money, or you can deposit it in a bank. You have experienced

the Physical world. In the World of Lower Forms, the next higher world, we have

archetypal molds for all these physical objects. There is a mold for the ideal

human, a human that has ALL characteristics. At the same moment he/she has blue

eyes, brown eyes, green eyes, etc. The model has all forms of eyes imaginable,

all types of hair imaginable, etc. This world is a world of perfection, filled

with perfect triangles, perfect time, etc. In this world an equilateral

triangle has three sides, all equal, and three angles, all exactly 60 degrees.

It is within this realm we delve while doing mathematical calculations. The

highest realm is the World of the Higher Forms. A realm of Absolute Truth,

where there are no interpretations, only complete Forms, which the mind can only

grasp in its full complexity. The worlds together form a logical outline

displaying levels of truth from lowest opinion to highest form. The two lowest

levels are usually occupied by common man. While working with mathematics, one

can venture into the third level. And only when we can stare directly into the

sun with our archetypal eyes can we conceive of the highest world.

From a spiritual standpoint, the Allegory of the Cave is a narrative of

one man’s journey to the light. He exists in a state of Becoming (the lowest

two levels of truth), and proceeds toward the ultimate Truth and Enlightenment,

much like The Buddha. From a political standpoint, it is an outline of a

society’s transformation to perfection. A tale of a society’s realization of

the falsehoods absorbed within it. It is a place where every person experiences

true freedom, and where the Good rule, where the Low are converted from animal

to Soul.

The purpose of the Allegory of the Cave, I believe, is twofold. To help

make people aware of the fact that they live within those lower levels of truth,

and that there are higher truths. And also to help the ones who are lonely,

dirty, almost broken. These lost ones who have just begun their journey and are

losing hope, a reminder that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.


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