An Analysis of the Allegory of Cave and Myth of Sisyphus by Plato

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Allegory Of Cave And Myth Of Sisyphus

The Allegory of the Cave,” written by Plato, is a parable entailing that humans are afraid of change and what they do not know. In this situation he gives, men are living in an underground cave. There is only one entrance and it is at the top. Near the entrance of the cave there is a fire burning which casts a shadow. The men living in the cave have been there their whole life. They are chained so that they can only see the wall and cannot turn around.

When objects pass by it creates a shadow on the wall. The shadows are the only thing they can see and therefore is the only thing they know to exist. Somehow one of them gets loose and wonders outside the cave. When he gets out, he is astonished at what he finds. He comes back in to tell the others about what he saw. The other men think he is mad and plot to kill him. This shows that people are afraid of change or what they do not know. This is true even today. For instance, one of the major causes of stress is change. A change in your job, lifestyle, or who your significant other can cause stress. Another example comes from a survey on which race people dislike the most. The list had all the known races and then there was one that was made up.

Although they had never heard of that particular race, it was picked as the most disliked. This shows that people are afraid or dislike what they do not know. Albert Camus, who is the author of “The Myth of Sisyphus,” is another parable. The man in the story, Sisyphus, has been condemned by the gods to roll a rock to the top of a mountain every day of his life. Every day he would roll it up the mountain and then the rock would roll back down to the bottom. We are told that Sisyphus is an absurd hero. He is called this because he knows what will happen after the rock is rolled to the top, yet he is content with doing so. “Sisyphus, proletarian of the gods, powerless and rebellious, knows the whole extent of his wretched condition: it is what he thinks of during his descend. The lucidity that was to constitute his torture at the same time crowns his victory.” The gods have done this to him for punishment, but Sisyphus does not see it as that. Camus writes, “The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy.” I think that this story relates to us a great deal.

Camus addresses this when he writes, “The workman of today works every day in his life at the same tasks, and his fate is no less absurd.” This statement is true in that we all have our daily regiment that we go through. And every day we finish it, yet the next day we will have to do the same thing. The “Allegory of the Cave” and “The Myth of Sisyphus,” are both an attempt to explain some aspect of the way people think or why we do what we do. I believe that the “The Myth of Sisyphus” is the most realistic of the two. It is true that every day we strive to finish whatever it is that we have to do; knowing the next day we will have to do it again. This story made me think about my own life. For instance, right now I am up late doing something for school. I had plenty of time to do it earlier, but I put it off to the very last minute. I will do the very same thing tomorrow, instead of getting my schoolwork done during reasonable hours; I will wait until the last minute.

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An Analysis of the Allegory of Cave and Myth of Sisyphus by Plato. (2023, May 22). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/an-analysis-of-the-allegory-of-cave-and-myth-of-sisyphus-by-plato/

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