Socrates - Plato Phaedo - The cage
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
“The lovers of wisdom,” said he, “perceive that when philosophy first takes possession of their soul it is entirely [82e] fastened and welded to the body and is compelled to regard realities through the body as through prison bars, not with its own unhindered vision"..............
The lovers of knowledge, then, .... perceive that philosophy, taking possession of the soul when it is in this state, encourages it gently and tries to set it free, pointing out that the eyes and the ears and the other senses are full of deceit, and urging it to withdraw from these, except in so far as their use is unavoidable, and exhorting it to collect and concentrate itself within itself, and to trust nothing except [83b] itself and its own abstract thought of abstract existence; and to believe that there is no truth in that which it sees by other means and which varies with the various objects in which it appears, since everything of that kind is visible and apprehended by the senses, whereas the soul itself sees that which is invisible and apprehended by the mind.