There was also this composition of Martianus Capella about the wedding of Mercury and Philogia with the seven liberal arts as guests. (Guthrie, 1981; Hamilton and Cairns, 1961)
In the allegory, Plato depicts humans as prisoners chained in their thoughts. When they look at the shadows, they mistake its appearance for reality. They think that what they see on the wall is actually real and could not comprehend the true causes of the shadows. If for example, a shadow looks like a shovel, they would say "I see a shovel" but then again he is only looking at the shovel.
For Plato, the prisoners would be mistakenly taking the terms in their language to refer to the shadows that pass before their eyes, rather than to the real things that cast the shadows. This is the reason why people where represented by prisoners. They are bound to their belief much to the point that they are addicted with as the term shackle would imply. In a word, they keep on believing and interpreting something which is superficial.
Plato can therefore be seen as referring to a higher reality. In his allegory, his point was that the general terms of our language are not "names" of the physical objects per se but are actually names of things that we cannot see, things that we can only grasp with the mind. (Irwin, 1995; Jackson, 2001; Kochin, 2002; Kraut, 1993)
I have no qualms on philosophers as l...
Aristotle and Happiness
Aristotle was very concerned with the examination of moral philosophy or ethics and relate it to his political perspective. In his composition entitled as Nicomachean Ethics, he discusses the mechanics to which one can be or is morally responsible along with a discussion on the nature of the virtues and vices involved in moral evaluation and the methods of achieving happiness in human life. Essentially, Aristotle concerned himself with the question of what does it take for an individual human being to be a good person. (Barnes, 1995; Lord, 1984)
All individual beings act because it is what makes them happy even if it hurts other people. As such, some ethical standards regard an act which may be unethical as something good because it gives happiness to the person. Suffice it to say, we are guided in life by our natural preference for engaging in pleasant activities rather than in unpleasant ones which may turn out to be good. According to Aristotle, ethical living involves the pursuit of true happiness. This form of happiness is not the kind where it gives pleasure because this is incomplete. Aristotle advocates contemplation as the highest form of happiness because pursuit of such would bring a person most near to divine blessedness while realizing all of the genuine human virtues as well. (Poe, 1965)
With regards to the pursuit of happiness of civilized communities, such would be necessary for a life worth living. More importantly, however, is what for of happiness should be pursued. In line with Aristotle, happiness can be obtained by pursuit of virtues because only thru this can we be worry free. For example, when we steal something that we have been craving to have such as electronic device, we become