People will usually feel very strongly one way or the other about this topic. The founding principle of philosophy is perhaps the astonishment, source of the questions. Red pill or blue pill? Julien Josset, founder. The Matrix is based on a philosophical question posed by the 17th Century French philosopher and mathematician Rene Descartes. This quandary was captured in a 1974 thought experiment by American philosopher, Robert Nozick. In The Matrix, Neo is freed by rebel leader Morpheus (ironically, the name of the Greek God of sleep) by being awoken to real life for the first time. It will step through how the questions from the movie directly relate to both skepticism and the mind-body problem, and further how similarly those problems look to concepts raised by both Descartes’ and Plato’s philosophies. Firstly, Cypher was right. The great movie scenes: The Matrix and bullet-time. Richard Colledge does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. A freed prisoner, Plato suggests, would be startled to discover the truth about reality, and blinded by the brilliance of the sun. The Matrix also trades on more recent philosophical questions famously posed by the 17th century Frenchman René Descartes, concerning our inability to be certain about the evidence of our senses, and our capacity to know anything definite about the world as it really is. //-->. Why virtual reality cannot match the real thing. Matrix shows us an update of the Allegory of the Cave of Plato, tinged Christianity and class struggle! The world (the matrix) is a prison where there is neither hope nor taste nor smell, a prison for your mind” Matrix and The socratic Method Descartes even noted the difficulty of being certain that human experience is not the result of either a dream or a malevolent systematic deception. The film centres on a computer hacker, “Neo” (played by Keanu Reeves), who learns that his whole life has been lived within an elaborate, simulated reality. “Morpheus: She (the matrix) is the world that superimposes your look to keep you from seeing the Truth. While many may appreciate . This dilemma is unfolded in the first film’s increasingly notorious red/blue pill scene, which raises the ethics of belief. ... A child is taught to not ask stupid questions as it becomes a teenager, an ego driven person. Keanu Reeves and Hugo Weaving in The Matrix. Matrix is a mixture of complex science fiction story incorporating mythology, computer science, philosophy and several religious themes from Hinduism, Gnosticism, Buddhism and Christianity. In raising this tension, The Matrix still strikes a nerve – especially after 20 further years of insatiable consumption. Finally note another important character, Trinity, completes the Neo-Trinity-Morpheus triangulation, which validates the Christ metaphor. The film’s chief villain, Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving), darkly notes that unlike other mammals, (western) humanity insatiably consumes natural resources. The Matrix also trades on more recent philosophical questions famously posed by the 17th century Frenchman Rene Descartes, concerning our inability to be certain about the evidence of our senses, and our capacity to know anything definite about the world as it really is. Behind them, the opening of the cave with a wall, behind which men pass on their shoulders all kinds of items. The Matrix caused his mind to believe his senses were experiencing that which the matrix was telling him was happening. In a famous passage from Plato’s Republic (ca 380 BCE), Plato has us imagine the human condition as being like a group of prisoners who have lived their lives underground and shackled, so that their experience of reality is limited to shadows projected onto their cave wall. With more questions simply posed as we delve into answering these questions. Beardsley, Monroe C. New York: Random House, 1960. The late 20th century French thinker Jean Baudrillard, whose book appears briefly (with an ironic touch) early in the film, wrote extensively on the ways in which contemporary mass society generates sophisticated imitations of reality that become so realistic they are mistaken for reality itself (like mistaking the map for the landscape, or the portrait for the person). Question: I get that people in the matrix, who have not been freed, are not ready to be freed, and I know at one point when Morpheus is explaining the matrix to Neo (I believe during the woman in the red dress test) he says something along the lines of: The matrix is a system, that system is our enemy. Thus the matrix becomes a gigantic concentration camp. Neo will also see an Oracle (note the quotation from Plato’s old lady, “know thyself“), like Socrates, he is the Elected and must save his people, and like him, he is dazzled by light after his release. Why virtual reality cannot match the real thing. It’s like a situation everyone shares without … What is The Matrix? 4 philosophical questions. 1st ed. But we also see the rebel traitor Cypher (Joe Pantoliano) desperately seeking reinsertion into pleasant simulated reality. We only ever experience the world as it is available through the partial spectrum of our senses. The Matrix plays out an old philosophical tale of a brain in a vat: A disembodied brain is floating in a vat, inside a scientist's laboratory. “Fate” versus “free will” is a classic debate in philosophy. What pill would you choose and why? Read more: What analogies and similarities can you find to other situations or stories? People have been using these conundrums to understand philosophical concepts for nearly 2,000 years. The movie belongs to the “cyberpunk” genre, and incorporates many cinematographic, literary, philosophical, religious, and mythological references. The scientist has arranged that the brain will be stimulated with the same sort of inputs that a normal embodied brain receives. The Matrix also trades on more recent philosophical questions famously posed by the 17th century Frenchman René Descartes, concerning our inability to be certain about the evidence of our senses, and our capacity to know anything definite about the world as it really is. Sure deep questions about life and philosophical questions can simply lead us down a rabbit hole. The Matrix. This whole ideology is evidenced in the Matrix as Neo chooses to doubt the Matrix and engage in true reality in denying the false reality the machines have created. The Matrix was a wonderfully philosophical and beautifully violent movie. But they do make great dinner party conversations. 29-34. Neo: What truth? “Meditations on First Philosophy.” European Philosophers from Descartes to Nietzsche. He wants to return to the cave to persuade, open eyes to other prisoners and set them free. I've rewatched the Trilogy just recently, and its spiritual (philosophical) richness is astounding for a couple of geeky writers first major films. google_ad_client = "pub-2379188881946579"; google_ad_height = 15; The Matrix recalls several philosophical thought experiments. Warwick claims that The Matrix depicts a likely future for us, and welcomes it with open arms (and bio-ports), but philosophical issues don't get any decent treatment. Like all the others you were born in chains. Having grown up in this system, they will defend to the end and will kill the escapee from the cave. You are simply existing at that point. The most central of these is the question how you know whether the things you perceive are real or just an illusion. The-Philosophy.com - 2008-2019, Matrix and the philosophical meaning: Plato’s Cave, To Conclude: Matrix as a philosophical movie, https://www.the-philosophy.com/matrix-philosophical-analysis, Kant: Critique of practical reason (Summary). We can follow the metaphor of this escaped man, with the figure of the philosopher (trying to enlighten his fellow), particularly of Socrates. feel about not knowing whether you're in the true reality, and than brings in to question what is reality anyway. Cite this article as: Tim, "Matrix: A philosophical analysis, May 30, 2012, " in. I am interested to see your responses, so keep them as lengthy as possible:) What is the philosophical meaning of Morpheus’s character?