What are the forms?
Many objects have the same properties (eg beauty).
These properties can exist independently of the objects (if we destroy all beautiful things we do not destroy beauty).
These properties are the "forms". The forms are perfect, timeless and permanent.
The forms are superior to particular objects.
Objects exist by participating in the forms (and object is beautiful because it participates or partakes in the form of beauty).
Briefly explain and illustrate three properties of
Self-predictaton: the form of beauty is in itself beautiful, but in a different way to all other beautiful things.
Independence from Particulars: each form is its own essence, completely independent of the things which partake in it.
Perfection:the form of beauty is the perfect example of itself, nothing is more beautiful than beauty, there is no way in which the form is not beautiful.
Permanence:forms do not change.
Simplicity: the forms are 'one', the form of beauty is the only beautiful form. HOWEVER each form is good and the form of the good is the form of forms.
The difference between knowledge and opinion.
True knowledge is of the forms.
Knowledge is infallible. Opinion is fallible.
Knowledge is of what is real. Ignorance is of what is not real. Opinion is of what is between what is real and not real.
The Cave = The world of the senses
Prisoners = People who believe 'second hand'
Images on the wall = Illusion
The fire= The (physical) sun or what enables us to have experience
Seeing the fire and the people on the road = Belief
Outside the cave= the intelligible world (reality)
Looking at reflections of objects outside the cave = reasoning
Looking at objects outside the cave = intelligence
The sun = the form of the good
The Divided Line
Knowledge Intelligence/Full understanding Forms
Knowledge Reasoning Mathematics
Opinion Belief Physical things
Opinion Illusion Shadows, images and relfections
The Simile of the Sun
The visible world = The intelligible world (the forms)
The Sun = The form of the good
The eye= The mind (reason)
Sight = intelligence
To see = to know
Light = truth
Growth= the being (reality) of the forms
Unless there is light, our eyes cannot see, even though they have the power of sight. It is only in the presence of light, which comes from the sun, that we can see. The sun also causes growth and is the cause of sight. Sight is a power that eyes get from the sun. The sun is not sight, the sun is not light....it is their cause, it is 'higher' than them.