Comparison of the Matrix and the Allegory of the Cave
Composition I 3 October 2012 The Matrix and the Allegory of the Cave Whar if one uuere living through lite completely bound and facing a reality that doesn’t even exist? The prisoners in Plato’s “Allegory of the Cave” are blind from true reality as well as the people in the movie The Matrix. They are given false images and they accept what their senses are telling them. They believe What they are experiencing is not all that really exists. Plato, the ancient Greek philosopher wrote ‘The Allegory of the Cave, ” to explain the process of enlightenment and what true reality may be.
In rhe movie The Matrix, Neo (the main character) was born into a world of illusions called the Matrix. Neo’s true reality is being controlled by the puppet-handlers called “the machines” who use the human body as a source of energy. In the movie, Neo, finds an alternate reality and has to go on a journey to discover himself and what is around hinm Much like “The Allegory of the Cave” the prisoners in a dark underground cave, who are chained to the wall, have a ot reality only based upon this limited view of the cave. Both the prisoners of the cave and Neo from
The Matrix haue to transcend on the path of “enlightenment” to know the truth Of their own worlds. Deep within the cave the prisoners are chained by their necks and haue a limited view of reality. Around them, by the distant light of the fire, they only see shadows and outlines of people or objects. The Matrix is comparable to Plato’s “Allegory of rhe Cave” in a number of vuays Similar to the prisoners Of the rave, the humans are trapped in what the modern day puppet-handlers (the machines) want them to see. In the movie, Neo is a computer hacker. d one day he suddenly realizes that his world is fake. by finding out the truth after he was released from the pod. Neo discovers that what he has been presented with his entire life is only reflections or merely shadows ot the truth. The puppet-handlers (the machines) represent what Plato calls the influential and powerful members Of society. The Objects making the shadows in “The Allegory of the Cave” are also creating a false conclusion for the prisoners. In The Matrix the puppet-handlers and the machines spawned from a singular consciousness called (artificial intelligence).
In both The Matrix and “Allegory otthe Cave,” the puppeteers have created artificial surroundings as a way to control and operate the information the prisoners receive, Plato also stated that eventually one Of the more intellectual prisoners would break free from the cave and into the outside world. The one prisoner that Plato refers to reflects Neo in The Matrix when he is being released from his pod that the machines have created. Once the prisoner of the cave has broken free he can now look all around him and see the objects as they really are.
While in the movie The Matrix, Neo is using is own eyes for the first time and sees that he is actually living in a human factory. In Plato’s “Allegory at the Cave,” he states that the treed prisoner uuould be shocked and not used to the outside world. The prisoner would try to think that what he saw and experienced before was truer than What is he sees now. When Neo is revived from being detached from the pod, Morpheus tells him what state the world is in now. Neo turns into a state of disarray and denial.
This new knowledge of the truth overwhelmed Neo so much that he vomited and assed out The released prisoner in “The Allegory of the Caue” might feel that what he is seeing was the illusion and shadows on the wall were even more real. In the movie The Matrix, a character named Chypher says to Trinity, “I think the Matrix can be more real than this world. ” The freed prisoner would have thoughts of going back to the cave, just the same as Neo had thoughts of going back to the Matrix because it is more familiar to him and less painful.
According to Plato, the treed prisoner uuould have to wonder where the shadows came from or even what there was beyond the rave. He must have sensed something was wrong and he sought out the truth. This is the only way that a prisoner is able to escape. Neo, while on the computer, also has that same pondering idea: to learn more about the truth of the reality he’s in. Plato indicated that the sunlight would hurt the freed prisoners eyes, leaving him briefly blind At the same rime this is what happened ro Neo when he was released from his pod, and Neo asks why his eyes hurt, Morpheus replies with “you’ve never used them before. Plato later suggests that the prisoner would hare his discovery of the real world with those who were also trapped in the cave, but he would have no desire to go back to his life in the cave. In the end, his desire to help his fellow prisoners would prevail and just like in The Matrix, this somewhat explains the people on rhe ship. upon the prisoners arrival back to the cave to tell his companions about the world that exists outside, the prisoner would have great difficulty in telling them the truth because he would either not be understood or they would not believe him no matter what.
In the Matrix. hen Morpheus introduces the Matrix to Neo, he says, “Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself. ” In Plato’s story, the prisoners allies would only start to mock him and decide that he must be insane They would he offended because he questioned the idea that their realiry may be flawed and they may also fear that they would become blind. unable to see the only reality they have ever known if they left. Plato explains that some men would prefer to even kill one another then allow anyone to take them out of the cave.
In The Matrix a character named Cypher kills several of the crew just so that he could go back to the Matrix (rhe cavei When Morpheus tells Neo in reference to the people still trapped in the Matrix, “You have to understand, most of these people aren’t ready to be unplugged (released from the Matrix or the cave). And many of them are so hopelessly dependent on the system, that they will fight to protect it. ‘ The creation of this mcr. /ie gives a futuristic prospective of “The Allegory of the Cave,” letting the people who have seen the movie think about reality and the truth.
In conclusion, Plato’s story of the cave and The Matrix are similar in many ways and they bring up many philosophical points that significantly addresses the topic of societys role in our lives. Work Cited Plato. “The Allegory Of the Cave. ” Republic. Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1974. 240 – 248. Print. The Matrix. Dir. Andy Wachowski and Larry Wachowski. Warner gros_ Pictures, 1999. DVD Cohen. Marc S. “Allegory of the Cave. ” Explanation of the Allegory of the Cave. Washington. edu, Apr. 2012. web. 03 Oct. 2012. “The MATRIX 101 – Understanding The Matrix. ” The MATRIX 101. Warner Bros. Pictures, 2004 Wetm Oct. 2012