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Brief of Plato's Republic

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The brief is showing importance of education in Antiquity age when the vast majority of people were totally uneducated. It was interesting for me to read how people who lived over 2000 year ago understood the meaning of education on the example of dialog between Socrates and Glaucon. Socrates, the famous philosopher speaking about education expresses set of suitable metaphors and comparisons.

Allegory of the Cave surprised me much. That is the one of the most outstanding images in the history of Ancient philosophy. Cave is a host to a group of people, they are prisoners there.  They stare at a wall all day, because of chains and cannot even move their heads around. That is shocking and in the same time accurate comparison.  Thanks to a fire, the people can see their shadows that are projecting on the opposite wall. Being in the cave for a long time, they truly believe the shadows are actual objective reality; the echo from voices they hear, prisoners also believe it is true. Till one day one prisoner has managed to release. The cave secrets are opened before him, and he is going up into the daylight, which right away blinds his eyes.

The next part of the author`s allegory was enlightening for me.  That blinded man, a prisoner who has looked up, and adjusted to the sunlight must go back to the cave. There he comes to understanding that his new eyes are ill and no longer fit for usual cave life. Moreover, he is been cruelly mocked by the other cave inhabitants. This allegory is moralizing dutiful rule for the good of community and public order. Some people must give up the peace and beauty of the true sunlight to help other men, most of whom prefer the darkness. However, which of us are ready for such sacrifice? Surprisingly enough, but Socrates think that educated people would do it. After all they so much time on their life training waiting for such opportunity, and they would not miss it, considering that as a personal honor and a chance to prove themselves.     

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