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Plato on Epistemology
- Essay length: 3486 words
- Submitted: 04/03/2010
The first 200 words of this essay...
How do I know what I know?
Question 1: Which main questions, concepts, and theories of epistemology are dealt with by your selected philosopher?
As a rationalist, Plato challenges inquiries of "what we know how we know" by centralizing the human mind (conscience and thought) as the essence of knowledge. Plato often debates using his deceased mentor, Socrates, to honour Socrates' reputation as a valuable teacher. True knowledge can be rediscovered deep within the mind; otherwise known as the World of Forms. He shows evidence of innate ideas in Platonic Doctrine of Recollection. In Plato's book Republic he writes about the distinctions between knowledge and personal opinion. He uses numerous concepts and metaphors such as metaphor of the sun, the divided line, and the Allegory in the Cave.
Plato theorized that seeking knowledge is independent from the physical world (world perceived by senses), there are two distinct worlds that reflect each other. "The domain where truth and reality shine resplendent," (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metaphor_of_the_sun) is the World of Forms, Plato predicts, which is within your mind and sustains perfection; whereas, our sensory perception is linked to the visible world (the physical world). In the physical world of changing
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