In Plato's "Allegory of the Cave", Socrates discusses with his disciple Glaucon how most people spend their lives in the cave of ignorance, and explains what happens when someone manages to get out of it to see the light of wisdom; at first it will be really painful for him getting used to seeing this light but, eventually he will realize that it is so much better than living in the darkness seeing nothing but shadows, and would feel the need to go back to the cave to share his experiences with the people that remain there, unfortunately he is misunderstood . The other prisoners say that he came back down without his eyes because he is not able to measure the shadows anymore (even though he doesn't care about this kind of frivolous honors because he has seen better things) they think that it's not even worth it to think about ascending, and decide that if someone else tries to free another prisoner to lead him up to the light, they will catch and kill the "offender".
Socrates also cites Homer in order to demonstrate how the experiences lived in the outside world, by the man who saw the light made him change the way he thinks:"Better to be the poor servant of a poor master, and to endure anything, rather than think as they do and live after their manner" meaning that he would rather suffer anything than entertain false nations and live such a miserable life.
MY PLACE IN THE CAVE
When I try to picture myself in Socrates' scenario, I believe I am just starting to break off the first links of the chain. When Socrates describes how painful it was for the man to get accustomed to the light, he is using an analogy to show us that acquiring knowledge can be a long and frightening process, one that requires a lot of effort and dedication, and is divided in various stages or steps. Right now I am only in the early stages of the process, the first step I am taking is precisely this that I am doing right now: to be going to college.
If I really want to see the light, which in my case would be getting at least a master's degree, I have to realize that, it is not something that can be achieved from one day to the other without trying hard enough and putting in the commitment that is required, I have to understand what getting out of my "comfort zone" means, and that is like the word says it if I am not in a comfort zone, I am going be somewhere where is not as comfortable but I need to keep on trying hard in order to achieve my goals, because I am sure that at the end of the day when i get there I will see that it was worth it.
Although if I wanted to look at it from a skeptical perspective I would say that there are too many chains in life, the fact that someone gets out of the cave of ignorance and is now able to see a little, or a lot of the knowledge light, does not necessarily mean that they are going to be completely free, it only means that they are not chained by ignorance anymore but they are now in other "prison-houses". We are part of this pre-established system that will always have some sort of chains that are trying to control us. Being money I believe the one that makes us all slaves, but that would be a different story...