Hippocrates’ Cave is an on-line resource keeping you up to date with current issues in medical ethics and law. My intentions in developing a site for medical ethics and law is because both fields are extraordinarily fast moving and newsworthy.
Traditional printed books can be out of date at the point of print thus putting the student at a disadvantage when writing essays on contemporary issues. It is hoped that this website will keep you up to date with new developments in what is an exciting and fascinating topic.
So, lets get started I imagine the first question that you are asking is why name a website a ‘Cave’?
Hippocrates’ Cave is a slight variation on the title of a parable by the Greek philosopher Plato namely ‘Plato’s Cave’. The parable goes something like this; imagine you have been imprisoned all your life in a dark cave – Whilst you have been in this cave both your hands and feet are chained and all that you can see is a wall in front of you. Behind you is a walk way that separates you from a fire that is blazing. Your captors use this walkway to carry statues and other objects to cast shadows on the wall in front of you and they are the only things that you and your fellow captors have ever seen, thought about and talked about. Strange? Not quite!
This is probably one of the best analogies used by Plato in his work ‘The Republic’ (360 BC). The parable of the cave becomes clearer as the story continues. Now, suppose you are released from these chains. At first the fire and the walkway confuse you, but gradually you come to see the situation of the cave properly and understand the origins of the shadow that you previously believed to be real. Eventually you make your way out of the cave into the sunlight and the fullness of reality illuminated by the Sun. Those who escaped the cave were fit to rule as Philosopher-Kings.
Of course Hippocrates Cave is not entirely for academics and aspiring ‘philosopher-kings’ – It’s for the amateur ‘Cave explorers’ interesting in medical ethics and law. It is for Doctors, nurses and allied professionals and the general public. Its for everyone!
It is hoped that you will find this site both stimulating and enlightening. In order for this site to develop, I value comments from its users and have included a comment section for your feedback in the contact tab. In the meantime, enjoy your journey through Hippocrates’ Cave with the hope that you will also find your philosopher inside.
David F Munns MA BSc (Hons) RGN RMN Dip H.E Cert MgMt
RN (University of the State of New York)
Founding Editor – Hippocrates’ Cave