} Well, this one will be a little bit off-beat, but it should be
} Socrates wrote down the story of Plato's Allegory of the Cave. As a
} quick refresher, Plato proposed a thought experiment of several people
} who grew up chained to seats facing a wall and never seeing anything
} that was not a shadow cast upon that wall. Plato supposed that if one
} of those people were freed and brought to the outside world to see
} the things that cast shadows and learn that things have color and
} depth to them. Later this freed person returns to the cave and tries
} to educate the others about the revelations, but they will not believe
} their eyes are deceived.
} The message of the Allegory is that through actual experience you can
} have dramatic life-changing revelations that change everything you
} know about the world and expand your consciousness to the point that
} your former peers have no way to comprehend the reality you have found
} That message is BS.
} Actual cases of people long confined to small spaces and then let out
} or blind from birth and given vision in adulthood, shows that new
} developments in vision are not easily incorporated into the mind.
} People without need for depth perception do not visually perceive
} depth when brought into the wide world. People who gain vision don't
} know how to use it, and see the world as a mishmish of colored shapes
} without an understanding of how, say, a person turning around is the
} same thing percieved from different angles, or what is in front of
} what, or how size changes with distance.
} The brain needs to learn these things in infancy or they never
} 'click'. I can hear your objections now, "There's nothing inspiring
} in that. You're just saying we are stuck how we grew up."
} You're half right. Almost no one in the cave truely succeeds outside
} it, but that's not where you should be looking for inspiration. Each
} successive generation is moving further and further out of the cave.
} Blindness is more easily treated. Kids don't grow up working in dark
} mines any more. The typical baby will now grow up seeing more of the
} world and from more angles and through more media than ever before.
} Parts of humanity have stepped outside of the cave and most of it will
} be living outside soon.
} Doesn't that just fill you with awe and make you want to help this
} great progress of your species by expanding the opportunities for the
} young to experience the world?
} You owe the Oracle nothing. But those movers over there, taking
} furniture out of the cave, someone's got to pay them.