Human Experience 102
15 September 2018
Ignorance in Daily Life
The phrase “ignorance is bliss” is a widely known and popular saying, but is ignorance truly blissful? Although being unaware because of one’s own ignorance seems blissful at first, being unknowledgeable because of one’s ignorance is anything but blissful. Unconsciously, people create caves with technology that allow themselves to remain unaware of the realities surrounding them and allow them to believe that they are completely correct. Because people believe that their reality is the only correct reality, most people choose to remain ignorant, and even argue when told otherwise. Reality might be more difficult to comprehend as well. For example, “if someone compelled him to look at the light itself wouldn’t his eyes hurt, and wouldn’t he...flee to the things he’s able to see, believing that they’re clearer than the ones he’s being shown” (Plato 2). Because we spend our lives in caves, we “…believe that the truth is nothing other than the shadows of those artifacts” (Plato 3). In The Allegory of the Cave, Plato describes the prisoners’ ignorance created by imprisonment for their entire lives. The prisoners believe that the shadows they have seen are completely true and the only truth. Plato uses this allegory to describe mankind’s ignorance that has been created in society. All humans, myself included, create caves of ignorance. People spend every moment in these caves. I have created a cave for myself through technology. With the help of technology, I feel like “communication is breaking down everywhere” (Bohm 11). As long as I am living in this technological cave, I cannot be an enlightened person. An enlightened person is someone who is “inspired by a common faith in the possibility of a better world, outlined specific targets for criticism and proposals for action” (Champion et al.). In order to become an enlightened person, I must become aware of the aspects, problems, and consequences of my cave and then work towards leaving my cave. These steps are not only necessary for me to take to leave my cave; all people must perform these steps in order to leave their caves. If we are able to perform the necessary tasks to leave our caves, then we can become enlightened people.
In order to alleviate myself from my self-made cave, I must first acknowledge the problems and consequences of my cave. I have created a cave for myself through technology. Technology has forced people of society to function “as prisoners of our own…point[s] of view. What we earnestly believe to be…true…[is] a blurry shadow of truth” (Hiner 191). More specifically: when I hear my alarm clock in the morning, I check social media and I check my email. Fifteen minutes later, social media thoroughly scrolled through and email thoroughly checked, my feet hit the floor and my day begins. Immediately, my music is playing while I brush my teeth and perform my morning ritual. A...