Plato is one of the most outstanding philosophers whose works produced a significant impact on the philosophy of the ancient world as well as on the later European philosophy. His views may be argued, some people may agree with Plato others may not but, nevertheless, his contribution to the development of the philosophical thought of ancient Greece and Europe can be hardly underestimated.
One of his works is The Allegory of the Cave that constitutes an integral part of his Republic. In this work the philosopher raises a number of important questions concerning good, the existence of gods, human life and education and he give very particular answers to the questions he asks. In fact, he suggests a different vision of the world, human life, and human consciousness. This is why it is very important to analyze the Allegory of the Cave and discuss its interpretation and Plato’s views of life and education.
Thus, taking into account all above mentioned, it is possible to conclude that Plato’s Allegory of the Cave is a very complicated philosophical work that can be interpreted in different ways. It is quite interesting to note that practically any interpretation, at least among those mentioned in terms of this paper, may be correct since this philosophical work contains many symbols, metaphors, allegories, and parables which may be interpreted in different ways. This is actually what really creates such a diversity of interpretations of the allegory. Nonetheless, regardless such ‘multiinterpretationism’ of the Allegory of the Cave, it is still possible to clearly traces the basic ideas and the author’s message to the audience. In fact, Plato has a very original view and admits the possibility that the reality may be hidden from people and different from what we perceive as the true and real life which, actually, may be just an illusion. At the same time, there is a hidden knowledge within human mind that can reveal the essence of the life by means of education and personal development that leads to the enlightenment.
1. Plato. “The Allegory of the Cave”, in The Republic, New York: World Classics, 1998.