Over the past 50 years, I've had some absolutely phenomenal things happen and they keep getting better. I think better is a nice word. It doesn't matter how good it is. It can get better. Now unfortunately, there's some people, they think it keeps getting worse. And I know what they're like because I lived there for quite a long time and it's not a fun way to live. It's not necessary, but the people that are there don't know that. They really don't know. And I believe it's our obligation to help them understand that. Do you know? Just as I said that, I thought it was something that I haven't really talked about for actually a few years. Some of you are familiar with it. It's Plato's analogy of prisoners in an underground cave. And it's such a beautiful way of explaining why people don't get this.
Build a picture with me. I want you to imagine prisoners in an underground cave. Get the picture in your mind. These prisoners are chained in this cave against a wall. They can't move. They're not even able to turn their head sideways. They're locked in the cave and they're forced to stare at the wall that's in front of them. Now there's a mouth to the cave, so light shines in from the outside. Above and behind the prisoner is a screen like what you would use to show puppets. And beyond the screen, there's a fire burning. And then beyond the fire, there's people walking and they're carrying vessels and statues and objects. The shadows of these prisoners and the vessels and the statues and the objects, the shadows of the flames and the shadows of the prisoner themself is being cast upon the wall of the cave that the prisoner has been forced to stare at since birth. This is all they know.
Now, the sound of the people talking appear to be coming from the wall of the cave. So the truth then to the prisoner would be nothing but shadows on the wall of the cave that are talking. Now, if they were loosened and able to turn, wouldn't the light hurt their eyes? Wouldn't they prefer to look away at the dark? They were told, "Listen, this is real. That's false." They'd say, "No way. That's real. That's false."
If the prisoner were freed, then forced to climb a steep and rugged ascent up out of the cave, wouldn't they first be blinded by the daylight? And when they could see what would they see? Well, they would probably see the shadows of things or the reflection of things in the water. And then standing in the sunlight, beholding the sun, don't you think they'd give anything to keep from returning to their fellow prisoners back in the cave? Now, if they were told there's a contest going on in the cave and the prisoner that can most accurately identify the moving objects on the wall would win, do you think the freed prisoner would care for such honors any longer?
This is why people reject the truth. That was Plato's way of explaining why they can't accept what we're talking about. That's real. This is false. See, when you go out and you tell people, if they can see it in their mind, they can hold it in their hand. They'll say, "You shouldn't go to those places. Did you pay to go there?" I mean, you're going to get really screwed up if you keep going there. And then Harry, come here. Tell them what you just told me. And Harry laughed.
We have to understand why they're laughing. They really think this is nonsense. Now as Plato said, it's our responsibility to return back to the cave and try and educate the prisoners.
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