As I grow older I become more and more interested in reality and how our perception of the world shapes our lives around us. While reading Plato's Allegory of the Cave I was extremely intrigued. Plato's Allegory of the Cave is a theory where Plato claimed that to gain real knowledge you much gain it through philosophical reasoning rather than through opinion and senses.
His theory was presented through a story of three men who had been chained inside of a cave since birth. Their arms, legs and heads secured so they had never been able to look at anything except the wall in front of them. Behind the prisoners was a fire and a raised walk way leading to the entrance of the cave. People would cross the entrance of the cave with animals and plants along with other assorted things.
As people passed the entrance of the cave the prisoners could only see the shadows passing along the wall but not the people themselves. This caused them to believe the shadows were the only reality existing because they had never seen anything other than the shadows.
One of the men eventually escapes the chains and becomes overwhelmed with the world outside. After spending sometime out of the cave he realizes that the life and images he was seeing in the cave was not real. He returns to the cave to tell the other prisoners what he has learned. The other prisoners do not believe him and become so upset they try to kill him.
Each portion of the story represents man exploring and gaining philosophical reasoning. At the start of the story the man doesn't have a good understanding of the world because he is only perceiving the world through his senses and opinions. As the story goes on the man comes to understand the world by climbing up to the entrance of the cave, representing the philosophical awakening.