Philosophy Essay on Platos Allegory of the Cave

Date:  2021-06-24 10:29:12
6 pages  (1645 words)
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The allegory of the cave concept is a very interesting one. The idea of the people with shadowy knowledge within the allegory of the cave going to the world of the imperfect to become masters there presents a very interesting and controversial discussion. The idea behind it is that if the imperfect world is left to govern itself, it will be taken over by corrupt and wealthy individuals turning the place into a corrupt society. My worldview approach to this idea would be that the allegory of the cave theory about a society not being wise enough to govern itself is out of place. This is derived from my belief that even knowledgeable people have the capacity to be corrupt. Another issue is that wealthy people can be good leaders too and might have a bigger capacity to in leadership positions as a result of their wealth. Wealth should not be used to measure the leadership capacities of a person but it does affect the kind of leadership a person offers and the end outcomes of that leadership.

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The allegory of the cave was a concept brought forward by a Greek philosopher named Plato. The concepts put the effects on nature, of being knowledgeable in comparison with a situation of lack of that knowledge. Of particular interest is the insinuation that more knowledge constitutes better leadership. I come from the school of thought that leaders are born or they teach themselves how to be leaders. One cannot be taught how to be a leader, it comes from within them. It is, however, important to note that relevant knowledge is important as per the area of leadership that one is in. My dispute is that there is no particular knowledge about how to lead and every leader has their way and approach. So long as their methods are effective and are not illegal or counter-productive, then they are good enough. Plato's analogies are however very interesting. The analogy about philosophers being like freed prisoners who are able to perceive the reality of things as opposed to the manufactured reality presented to them through shadows in prison. It's an interesting argument but I can't back of my help but have a question at the back of my mind. If one doesn't realize that they don't know something, does the not knowing really affect them in any way? I don't think so. Philosophy is made of personal arguments in relation to previous events or occurrences that pertain to humans. The philosophical knowledge is, therefore, useful only to the person who has it. Different points of view will work differently for different persons depending on their life setting. The allegory of the cave presents a situation whereby people to obtain particular knowledge for them to live well. On the other hand, there is a natural process of learning things and ways of life. Through history, people have been known to tackle challenges and learn about them as they come. It has worked all through and it should, therefore, continue working. The perception that one has to have certain amounts of knowledge to be a leader does not hold ground just by itself. It should state that the knowledge has to be relevant to the type of activities and events involved in the area they are leading. However, it is important to note that the importance of education cannot be undermined in any context as it is a crucial part of the decision making and finding solutions to challenges facing humanity. The idea is that there is no particular philosophical knowledge to go about the process of leadership. According to Plato, the education is the learning spiritual knowledge that he refers to as right philosophy. That's the concept that brings controversy. Education should be learning facts established through historical events and occurrences or experimentation. The idea about spiritual knowledge is based on opinions as usually presented by philosophy. Philosophy as a study approaches existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind and language. All these factors are based on the life setting of these people and will, therefore, tend to be very diverse and distinct. It, therefore, follows that the concept of involvement of philosophical knowledge in the state leadership is not as crucial as might be presented by the allegory of the cave.

Catharsis is a term derived from the Greek name Katharsis that means purification. It, therefore, refers to the purification of emotional challenges to the effect of renewed vigor or passion. From the definition, it becomes easy to relate catharsis to one's personal life. The role of catharsis in one's life is very crucial as changes in emotions are inevitable as long as one is still alive. Catharsis plays an important role in my life. First, as I go through my day to day activities I am bound to meet a lot of different people, with different characters and points of view. At the end of the day, emotions run haywire and are neither here nor there. The process of catharsis plays a role in stabilizing these emotions and aligning them to the environment at present thus providing a calming effect. The emotional release is always initiated through certain forms of art such as music. Music is a particular therapeutic tool that is able to calm nerves and repress emotions. It should, however, be noted that music can elicit emotions too. The determinant is always in what kind of music it is. Catharsis is, therefore, helpful in enabling one to continue carrying out their tasks effectively. One emotional state is has a huge effect on how they perform as far as their daily activities are concerned. Stability of emotions is, therefore, important in ensuring maximum productivity and effectiveness. However, the art chosen to initiate the process of catharsis can be counterproductive by eliciting undesired emotions. It should, therefore, ensure that the type of art chosen is therapeutic and works well with the person in question. The catharsis process is, therefore, different for everyone.

Discernment is another controversial issue as far as philosophy is concerned. Discernment refers to the tendencies to judge or have perceptions about people or things through careful analysis of the aspects pertaining to the issues at hand. It is a common trait with people and it occurs in different forms depending on the issues at hand. Discernment involves digging deep for understanding and trying to come up with conclusions. In my daily activities, it is always a common urge to try and understand why people behave the way they do. It, therefore, becomes a trait to try and evaluate and analyze people behavior and actions and try to come up with conclusions about them. This whole process constitutes discernment. Rhetoric is another aspect of philosophy that is employed in trying to bring out arguments. Rhetoric refers to the art of writing and speaking well and being able to bring out arguments in an effective manner. I employ rhetoric in communication and in the process of discernment. As mentioned earlier discernment involves analyzing and one of the ways of analyzing them is them is through communication. Rhetoric, therefore, becomes an important aspect while trying to establish various facts about a person and trying to come up with conclusions about them. While encountering discernment on myself I also make use of rhetoric to make sure that I am understood well and therefore not judged to be something I am not. The rhetoric aspect is, therefore, crucial in making sure that people are able to express themselves. Discernment is a double-edged aspect as it could be good while it could also be counterproductive. The process entirely depends on a person and the outcomes and conclusions are likely to be different among different people. It, therefore, becomes paramount that people have the capability to express themselves and clearly bring out their ideas, explanations or arguments.

In conclusion, the allegory of the cave is an interesting way of trying to study the effect of education and knowledge on the overall performance of people in leadership. The philosophical ideas it presents cannot, however, be ignored. The analogies used by Plato are particularly interesting in trying to understand his argument. His prison argument is an interesting way of connecting the philosophical knowledge and expertise in leadership. Leadership is one of those aspects that I believe has no experts. I believe that in leadership people learn on the job and there is always a new thing to be learned every day. The leadership should also be driven by desire passion and dedication, as opposed to being driven by acquired knowledge of analyzed personal opinions. The discussion about catharsis presents an interesting aspect about how to deal with emotions. In leadership, apart from knowledge, one has to be able to deal with their emotions and be able to repress them when need be. The ability to engage in a catharsis process, therefore, becomes important for any leader. The other discussed aspect is discernment. A leader should be able to undertake discernment and be able to understand their subjects. This enables them to serve well and deliver. Another aspect is the rhetoric, which is an important part of being a leader. One has to be able to express themselves well and be able to communicate adequately and effectively. All these aspects were discussed in a bid to connect them to the idea present by the allegory of caves concept. It, therefore, follows that knowledge by itself does not qualify one to be a leader, but rather knowledge coupled with other capabilities that are based on personal capabilities something one has learned. The capabilities actually play a big role in making the efforts of a leader effective. Knowledge and having strong personal opinions comes as a plus for the leader. The allegory of the caves concept does not, therefore, hold ground as far as the leadership is concerned.

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