The Matrix Universe, an authorized member of a Zion crew offers a
prospective human in the Matrix a choice of ingesting a red
pill. Doing so activates a trace program that allows the crew to
locate the human's body in the Matrix powerplant. Once the person is
found, commands are sent to the pod to awaken the person.
Red pills appear to have either seen "glitches" from
the Matrix (e.g. a book continuously respawning on a shelf, regardless
of attempts to remove the book), or have such a nature and/or awareness
as to question their life within the Matrix, and refuse to dismiss the
strange events - basically those who have figured out the illusion of
According to the character
Morpheus, exiting the Matrix can be traumatic, particularly to those
who have lived in it for too long. As a rule, crews normally only offer
the red pill to those no older than teenage. After that, the risk of
denial and psychotic episodes from the reality of separation could
increase. This rule was violated by Morpheus in rescuing Neo, who was
approximately 30 years old.—from Wikipedia
The BLUE Pillor
the RED Pill
question is asking us whether reality, truth, knowledge are worth pursuing.
The blue pill will leave us as we are, in a life consisting of simple belief
and blind faith and unexamined habits with what we have been handed and
memorize and hold as truth. The blue pill leaves us with the comfort of the
many things we believe we will receive if we take part in the everyday world
and do not examine much at all. We choose this pill if we believe that we
do not need truth to live. The blue pill lets us keep our identities and our
allegiances with family and friends undisturbed. source: On the choice
The Blue Pill or the Red Pill question in the story of
the MATRIX echoes the old story from the Bible of the Western Religious
traditions and the choice of the fruit from either the Tree of Knowledge
or from the Tree of Belief in Everlasting Life in the Garden of Eden.
The TREE of KNOWLEDGE or the TREE of LIFE (see
text below from Genesis) In the middle of the Garden of Eden were the tree of life and the tree of
the knowledge of good and evil. The Tree of knowledge was of knowledge
desirable for gaining wisdom of all things and of good and evil. Genesis
3: 5 "For God knows that when you eat of
it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and
of Life was the tree of Belief and the comfort of believing that one will
live forever. Those who chose the Tree of knowledge were expelled from
Eden and barred from getting back to the fruit of belief in everlasting life
("a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of
The purpose for offering this reference to the story in
Genesis is to raise the comparison of the choices being given: Knowledge and
Belief. There is no intent here to suggest that Knowledge is morally
incorrect or evil or sinful. The contrast is offered as between an
approach to life based on faith motivated by a hope of some positive
consequence or result such as everlasting life versus an approach to life
guided by knowledge. Some may criticize either choice as being in some
way incorrect or offering the lesser of a life. Some may even
characterize one choice as being morally incorrect. Such criticism is
avoided here as not relevant. The choices are presented here as
relevant to what Philosophy is about.
the RED Pill
The RED Pill is the path of Philosophy and Reasoning and
Critical Thinking and Science and testing. The BLUE Pill is that of
simple and uncritical belief and emotional decision
making. Which shall it be? Education and the Liberal
Arts and Sciences are about the Red Pill.
One of the core themes of
The Matrix is the concept that if you want to transform your world, you must
first identify how you have been programmed, decide whether the programming
is accurate, then decide whether to reprogram yourself.
You will be challenged in
a Philosophy class and in many classes. How will you respond to the
challenge that education poses to your beliefs, to your blue pill world?
As a simple start to the Red Pill path or some further
steps along that path you might go to http://www.snopes.com
and find five of the beliefs that you have held to be true that are not true
and you have just learned that they are not true by going to this site.
Another exercise would be to realize that you already
should be aware that things are not always as they appear to be or as we are
led to believe. Name one such thing in your life.
This should open up to the possibility that not all
beliefs that we hold to be true are actually true and that it might be of
some value to question beliefs and to examine them to determine which
beliefs have more evidence and reason to support them and distinguish them
from others with less support. Philosophy is a method for doing that
examination concerning some of the most basic questions and issues human
have ever confronted.
WARNING: the dangers of the Blue Pill
Thinking that the Blue Pill is the way to go, the Blue
Pill will provide you with comfort and security and stability and order will
involve great costs to those that use that approach to life. It will
imperil a society dominated by this type of uncritical thinking. It
exposes those who use it to greater risks of infections and diseases as they
will not use the latest scientific findings about the causes of illnesses
and the spread of disease. It permits people to hold stereotypical and
prejudicial notions of other peoples and to act on false claims. It
supports racist and sexist ideas and practices and other forms of irrational
discriminations and injustices based on uncritical beliefs. It subjects
practitioners of the Blue Pill path to victimization by charlatans and
hucksters and those that operate ponzi schemes based on irrational hope. The
Blue Pill path is attractive to those with concern for self over others and
for the present over the long term but it too often proves to be quite the
opposite of what was hoped for when choosing the Blue Pill.
BELIEF and DOUBT
Belief and Doubt are
opposing psychological states. They can not exist with regard to the same
idea at the same time.
Philosophy rests on a
Process of Inquiry using the dialectical method for thought. INQUIRY
is a process the mind can enter into to get from doubt to belief.
For the method and
the frame of mind of Philosophy whatever position is arrived at should
be subject to continuing process of inquiry and examination.
You can not doubt
your doubts. You can subject doubt to inquiry in order to resolve it one
way or another and arrive at a belief.
You can doubt or
question a belief and subject it to critical examination. You can not
believe a doubt. You simply doubt.
So, Philosophy is
about thinking about beliefs and settling on a belief using reasoning and
evidence wherever possible. It is also about continuing the process of
review of beliefs or positions taken using the continuing dialectical
method in the midst of a community of inquirers that serve to reinforce the
critical element in careful thinking..
4 This is the account of the
heavens and the earth when they were created.
When the LORD God made the earth and the heavens- 5
and no shrub of the field had yet appeared on the earth [b]
and no plant of the field had yet sprung up, for the LORD God had not sent
rain on the earth [c]
and there was no man to work the ground, 6 but
came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground-
7 the LORD God formed the man [e]
from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of
life, and the man became a living being.
8 Now the LORD God had planted a garden in the
east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. 9
And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that
were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were
the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
10 A river watering the garden flowed from
Eden; from there it was separated into four headwaters. 11
The name of the first is the Pishon; it winds through the entire land of
Havilah, where there is gold. 12 (The gold of that
land is good; aromatic resin [f]
and onyx are also there.) 13 The name of the second
river is the Gihon; it winds through the entire land of Cush. [g]14 The name of the third river is the Tigris; it
runs along the east side of Asshur. And the fourth river is the Euphrates.
15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the
Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. 16
And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in
the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree
of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely
18 The LORD God said, "It is not good for the
man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him."
19 Now the LORD God had formed out of the
ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought
them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called
each living creature, that was its name. 20 So the
man gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air and all the beasts
of the field.
But for Adam [h]
no suitable helper was found. 21 So the LORD God
caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took
one of the man's ribs [i]
and closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the
LORD God made a woman from the rib [j]
he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.
23 The man said,
"This is now bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called 'woman, [k]
for she was taken out of man."
24 For this reason a man will leave his father
and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.
25 The man and his wife were both naked, and
they felt no shame.
The Fall of Man
1 Now the serpent was more
crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the
woman, "Did God really say, 'You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?"
2 The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat
fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did
say, 'You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the
garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.' "
4 "You will not surely die," the serpent said
to the woman. 5 "For God knows that when you eat of
it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and
6 When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree
was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining
wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was
with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of
them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig
leaves together and made coverings for themselves.
8 Then the man and his wife heard the sound of
the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and
they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden.
9 But the LORD God called to the man, "Where are you?"
10 He answered, "I heard you in the garden, and
I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid."
11 And he said, "Who told you that you were
naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?"
12 The man said, "The woman you put here with
me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it."
13 Then the LORD God said to the woman, "What
is this you have done?"
The woman said, "The serpent deceived me, and I ate."
14 So the LORD God said to the serpent,
"Because you have done this,
"Cursed are you above all the livestock and all the wild animals!
You will crawl on your belly and you will eat dust all the days of your life.
15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman,
and between your offspring [a]
and hers; he will crush [b]
and you will strike his heel."
16 To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing;
with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you."
17 To Adam he said, "Because you listened to
your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, 'You must not
eat of it,'
"Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life.
18 It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.
19 By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground,
since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return."
20 Adam [c]
named his wife Eve, [d]
because she would become the mother of all the living.
21 The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam
and his wife and clothed them.
22 And the LORD God
said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must
not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and
eat, and live forever."
23 So the LORD God banished
him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken.
24 After he drove the man out, he placed on the
east side [e]
of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth
to guard the way to the tree of life.
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