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The Better India

written by Dhimant Parekh on Friday, October 28, 2005

Socrates and Plato are at an amusement park. They are standing in front of a roller coaster. A roller coaster that takes people in a 360 degree vertical turn. Plato looks at his bag of chips. Socrates looks at Plato's bag of chips. Plato: "I think I should not carry this bag along with me on the roller coaster." Socrates: "Unless, you feel that you can keep the bag with you and the chips will not fall down." Plato: "Unless I 'feel'? What does that mean? I know that if I carry the bag then the chips will fall down since the coaster completes a full circle vertically." Socrates: Which means that what you know is not what you feel. Plato looks at the bag and then looks at the screaming people riding the roller-coaster. Plato then looks back at Socrates with a raised eyebrow. Socrates (continuing): "By standing here, you know that the roller coaster completes a full circle vertically. But if you are sitting in it (and have not seen the coaster from outside), you only feel being turned upside down. You don't know that its traversing a circular path. In that case, you don't know that the chips will fall down. You feel that chips might fall down the moment you are turned upside down. So, the extra knowledge that you gained by standing here and watching the fact that the coaster completes a full circle has allowed you to save your chips from an inevitable disaster." Plato, who has by now finished his bag of chips, raises both his eyebrows and looks at the screaming people once again. Plato (thinking to himself): "Do they know? If yes, what do they feel?" Socrates goes to buy a bag of chips for himself.


Blogger Nals said...

Made my cousin read this post and she couldnt help admiring the way you write...

11:26 AM  

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