Archive for the ‘Metaphysics’ category

Metaphysics 101: What is our reality anyway?

December 14, 2009

Plato’ s allegory of the cave: we are prisoners of our reality!

Plato imagines a group of people who have lived chained in a cave all of their lives, facing a blank wall. The people watch shadows projected on the wall by things passing in front of a fire behind them, and begin to ascribe forms to these shadows. According to Plato, the shadows are as close as the prisoners get to seeing reality. He then explains how the philosopher is like a prisoner who is freed from the cave and comes to understand that the shadows on the wall are not constitutive of reality at all, as he can perceive the true form of reality rather than the mere shadows seen by the prisoners.

Most people, including ourselves, live in a world of relative ignorance.  We are even comfortable with that ignorance, because it is all we know.  When we first start facing truth, the process may be frightening, and many people run back to their old lives.  But if you continue to seek truth, you will eventually be able to handle it better.  In fact, you want more!  It’s true that many people around you now may think you are weird or even a danger to society, but you don’t care.  Once you’ve tasted the truth, you won’t ever want to go back to being ignorant!

Are we the creators of our reality?