Plato - "The Ring of Gyges".

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Plato, "The Ring of Gyges"

In "The Ring of Gyges" we are told about a shepherd, for the king of Lydia, named Gyges. One day as Gyges was letting his flock graze, an earthquake opened the Earth before him. Gyges curiously climbs down into the opening to investigate where in he finds a hollow horse made of bronze with doors. He enters the horse thru these doors and he finds a dead body that's only wearing a golden ring. Gyges takes the ring off of the body and crawls back to the surface where he then puts the ring on his finger.

Gyges returns to his duties and attends the monthly meeting for all of the kings shepherds so that a report can be given to the king. It was during this meeting that Gyges starts to play with the ring and is amazed when he turns the ring to the inside of his hand and notices that he has become invisible and that everyone else went on with the meeting as if he wasn't even there.

He turned the ring many times and was astonished each time he became invisible and reappeared.

While he was invisible, Gyges, seduced the queen of Lydia and later on convinced her to go against the king, which Gyges would murder and take over the kingdom. Plato then wants us to imagine if there were two rings. One belonging to an honest man and the other belonging to a

dishonest man. He says that no matter what values and morals a person has, they will in some way or another, act immorally and unjustly.

Given the opportunity to act unjustly, even the most honorable man will behave immorally,as long as the chances of getting caught have been taken out of the...