Mireya ColonJanuary 30, 2018Prof. SchiavoneMini Paper #1Is Professor O’Connor’s comparison of philosophical enlightenment to addiction recovery justified? Are there any other aspects of contemporary life (beyond addiction and recovery) that Plato’s allegory of the cave might also help to explain?Professor O’Connor’s is a very interesting article to read because what a creative way to compare Socrates’ The Cave to battling addiction. O’Connor argues that once we as a people are overly familiar with something, its hard for us to get out of whatever comfort zone we’re in. I agree with her statement.
Like she said, “…certain behaviors and situations in which ‘normal’ use of alcohol or other drugs turns to destructive dependency” (Peg O’Connor, 2012) – because people are so use to “watching the shadows on the wall”, people are afraid of looking at the bright side and sticking to it. For instance, let’s think of the movie The Matrix directed by Lana Wachowski. Neo, played by Keanu Reeves, is liberated by Morpheus and realized that his life is a sham, a deception.
Morpheus presents Neo two pills: The red pill and the blue pill. The red pill – the movie ends and you wake up in a room and continue to believe in what you want to believe. Take the blue pill and you stay and learn how deep the rabbit hole goes. Like the Matrix, Socrates cannot show other prisoners how to see the truth; only they themselves can open their eyes and seek the truth. Back to Prof.
O’Connor’s article, when one is deeply into alcoholism, it’s tough to get out of the familiarity of forgetting how we feel when we are sober. The alcohol is the cave and the sober experience is the light at the end of the tunnel. If you were to put the idea of The Cave to today, you can compare it to conspiracy theorists. They believe that the government is hiding the truth from the rest of the world; the only way to believe that is to do some research and understand it for themselves. Social media is another example. People every day people believe everything that is posted on their Facebook wall. But is everything posted on that wall always true? Or are they just “alternative facts”? Overall, I do believe that the professor’s comparison is justified because if you stay swimming in alcohol or whatever substance person abuses, you’ll never understand what’s real whether its an emotion or a belief to you it is right but to the one at the end of the tunnel will tell you that it is wrong and the “new” thing is right.