Oedipus Paper

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In terms of the human experience, Plato’s Allegory of the Cave reveals that most humans would rather know the truth and suffer rather than be fed a lie for their entire lives. This idea is reflected in Sophocles’’ Oedipus the King because Oedipus seeks the truth and suffers greatly when it is found. Plato’s four stages of awareness are necessary for the final form of the good, which is the truth, to be found. In both the Allegory of the Cave and Oedipus the King, these four stages of awareness; Imagination, Belief, Reason, and Understanding, take a vital role in explaining Oedipus’ suffering. To begin with, Plato would argue that Oedipus’ imagination shadows him from the real truth. Oedipus has not been king for very long and has so much power that he is unable to comprehend the extent of his actions and words. Oedipus is blind to other ways of perceiving the world. In the beginning of the story, Oedipus seems to be very confident in his promise to “ . . .be the defender of Thebes. I shall rid us of this pollution” (Sophocles 12). This view of how the world works is very narrow-minded. His vision of reality is very much tunneled. Oedipus says, “I shall leave nothing undone. With God’s help we shall prove fortunate – or fall.” (12) The language he uses limits his path to the truth. He says that he will either find out the truth or die. There are no words to gainsay what he says; his words must be the reality. However, this “reality” is soon contradicted. Plato’s second stage of awareness, Belief, applies to Oedipus very well. An example of this stage takes form in a person transitioning from a dark room to looking at the sun. At first, this person would be completely blinded. This person might even want to go back into the dark room. However, as the person gets used to the sun, his or her vision becomes more and more clear. This example is clearly displayed in Oedipus the King. Oedipus claims that he is going to catch this killer and says it so many times that he...
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