Phil 201 - D43 - Matrix Case

Published: 2021-06-29 06:43:09
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Category: Philosophy

Type of paper: Essay

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Elizabeth Klimkowski
Phil 201-D43
4/22/13
Essay

The debate of true knowledge has been going on for decades. Can humans truly know things or are they just ignoring reality and pretending like they can know things? This discussion has a lot to do with the senses. Philosophers ask questions such as; can we really trust our senses? Is what we perceive actually real? These questions are discussed in three articles called, The Allegory of the Cave, Synopsis: The Matrix, and Meditation 1 of the Things of Which We May Doubt. They have a lot in common but there are a few differences in the way they explain things.
All three articles essentially say that humans cannot really trust their senses. The Matrix portrays this by basically having an alternate universe in a computer that everyone is hooked up to. The people are just lying around, living their lives through a computer that is a programmed simulation of a world (Wachowski 1999). Therefore they do not know they are living a lie and their senses cannot be trusted. The Allegory of the Cave depicts the concept of not trusting the senses through an allegory. Socrates is telling a story about people in a cave that cannot move their heads or bodies (Plato). They perceive things through shadows. Everyone knows that shadows do not accurately portray the real living thing. Thus their senses were not to be trusted. This is similar to the people hooked up to cables in the Matrix. In Meditation of the Things of Which We May Doubt illustrates the concept of the mistrust of our senses through dreams. Sometimes dreams can seem very real. The senses perceived in dreams can sometimes be very life-like (Descartes 1641). Since this is true, how can humans actually determine that they are dreaming or not dreaming? This shows that our senses cannot be trusted. This is like the fake reality in the Matrix.

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