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Michelle Villalobos


Bold Points




Thornton Township High School

High School
2020 - 2024


  • Desired degree level:

    Bachelor's degree program

  • Majors of interest:

    • Mechanical Engineering
  • Not planning to go to medical school
  • Career

    • Dream career field:

      Mechanical or Industrial Engineering

    • Dream career goals:

      Public services

      • Volunteering

        Restoration Ministries Food Pantry — Food Bagger
        2023 – 2023

      Future Interests




      RonranGlee Literary Scholarship
      What about someone who believes in beautiful things but doesn’t believe in the beautiful itself and isn’t able to follow anyone who could lead him to the knowledge of it? Don’t you think he is living in a dream rather than a wakened state? Isn’t this dreaming: whether asleep or awake, to think that a likeness is not a likeness but rather the thing itself that it is like? The selected paragraph is from Plato's "Republic," a dialogue that explores the nature of love, beauty, and wisdom through a series of speeches given at a banquet. In this excerpt, Socrates questions the validity of someone who appreciates beautiful things but fails to grasp the concept of beauty itself. At its core, this passage delves into the dichotomy between appearance and reality, between the physical world of sensory perceptions and the realm of abstract Forms. Socrates challenges the notion that one can truly appreciate beauty without understanding its essence. He suggests that someone who sees only the surface beauty of objects, without recognizing the universal Beauty they partake in, is akin to a dreamer rather than someone fully awake to reality. The underlying meaning here lies in Plato's theory of Forms, where the material world is but a flawed reflection of the perfect, immutable Forms or Ideas. Beauty, for Plato, is not merely subjective; it is an objective, transcendent reality that exists independently of individual perceptions. Therefore, to truly comprehend beauty, one must ascend from the realm of appearances to the realm of Forms through philosophical inquiry and contemplation. Moreover, Socrates' questioning implies a distinction between ignorance and wisdom. The person described may appreciate beauty in a superficial sense, yet their inability to recognize and pursue the essence of Beauty suggests a lack of true wisdom. This ignorance leads to a state of illusion or "dreaming," where one mistakes appearances for reality. By contrasting this state of ignorance with the concept of the "wakened" mind, Plato underscores the transformative power of wisdom. To be truly awake, in the philosophical sense, is to perceive the world with clarity and insight, recognizing the underlying principles that govern existence. This awakening requires a willingness to question assumptions, challenge conventions, and engage in rigorous intellectual inquiry. Furthermore, Socrates' interrogation prompts people to reflect on the nature of perception and reality. The notion of mistaking a likeness for the thing itself highlights the inherent limitations of sensory perception. In the realm of appearances, things may appear beautiful, but this beauty is subjective and ephemeral. True Beauty, according to Plato, transcends the realm of appearances and resides in the realm of Forms, where it exists as an eternal, immutable essence. The pursuit of Beauty, then, becomes synonymous with the pursuit of wisdom and enlightenment. It requires a shift in perspective, a willingness to look beyond the surface and penetrate the depths of reality. Through dialectical reasoning and intellectual introspection, individuals can ascend from the world of shadows to the realm of light, where they may catch a glimpse of the Forms and apprehend the ultimate truths of existence. Plato uses this passage to advocate for philosophical inquiry and the pursuit of wisdom as a means to transcend the illusory world of appearances and grasp the eternal truths of the Forms. Through understanding the essence of Beauty, individuals can awaken from the dreamlike state of ignorance and achieve a deeper, more profound understanding of reality. By challenging people to question our perceptions and probe the nature of reality, Plato invites them to awaken from the dreamlike state of ignorance and embrace the transformative power of knowledge. Ultimately, the pursuit of Beauty is not merely a quest for aesthetic pleasure but a journey towards enlightenment and self-discovery.