In this previous post, I noted the similarities between DC 88:6-13 and a passage from Thomas Taylor’s translation of Plato’s Republic 571b-c. That passage happens to be right in the middle of Plato’s allegory of the cave, and upon further reflection, major elements from the cave seem to show up not only in section 88 but also 93.
For a quick recap, in the cave, prisoners are chained in the cave and can only see shadows on the wall, representative of the false reality of our earthly existence. But if one can escape the chains and ascend out of the cave (the philosopher) he or she will be able to behold the true reality of the light of the Good. Nowadays, this tends to be taught as secular education, and while education does play an important role in the allegory, historically most commentators viewed it as a kind of heavenly ascent. This passage under Platonists from Hannah Adams’s A Dictionary of All Religions and Religious Denominations (1817) is indicative of the standard view of Plato in Joseph Smith?s time:
The Platonic system makes the perfection of morality to consist in living in to the will of God, the only author of true felicity; and teaches that our highest good consists in the contemplation and knowledge of the supreme Being, whom he emphatically styles the good. The end of this knowledge is to make men resemble the Deity, as much is compatible with human nature. This likeness consists of the possession and practice of all the moral virtues.
This combination of seeing the Good and becoming like God was central to how the Neoplatonists interpreted the allegory of the cave, and was at the heart of the Platonic concept of the Philosopher King: the person that gains enlightenment (leaves the cave and sees the good) who was best to rule the ideal city.
In DC 88: 6-13, Christ has both the qualities of the Good (the source of all light, both the sun and intellect) and the philosopher (“He that ascended up on high, as also he descended below all things” ). That is, Christ, by going through the process of gaining enlightenment by coming out of the cave and seeing the Good, became the Good.
DC 93 makes this combination clear: Jesus “received not of the fulness at first, but continued from grace to grace, until he received a fulness” (13). Jesus received “the fulness” or deification as explained by verses 16 and 17 (“he received a fulness of the glory of the Father; and he received all power.”) Section 93 also begins with the allegory of the cave’s central issue: seeing God (1).
Like the allegory of the cave, section 93 says the goal is to get other people to also make the ascent. Says Taylor’s translation, “It is our business then, said I to oblige those of the inhabitants who have the best geniuses, to apply to that learning which we formerly said was the greatest, both to view the good, and to ascend that ascent.” DC 93:20 says that people who keep the commandments “shall receive of his fulness, and be glorified in me as I am in the Father,” and the end of section 88 sets up a system of holy education (the school of the prophets).
Thus the allegory of the cave seems to have played an important role in these revelations and suggests a number of elements of the Nauvoo theology.
 Hannah Adams, A Dictionary of All Religions and Religious Denominations, Jewish, Heathan, Mahomoten, and Christian, Ancient and Modern, 4th ed (Botson: James Eastburn, 1817), 225.
 Dominic J. O’Meara, Platonopolis: Platonic Political Philosophy in Late Antiquity (Oxford: Clarendon, 2003). I argued that many of the Book of Mormon prophets, Enoch, and Smith himself had these essential characteristics of the Philosopher King, the chief characteristics of which are laid out in allegory of the cave. “Joseph Smith as the Philosopher King: Neoplatonism in Early Mormon Political Thought,” Journal of Mormon History 38, no.3 (2012): 102-127. When I wrote the article, I thought Smith picked these ideas up through disparate sources, I now think he read Plato directly.
 The Works of Plato, viz. His Fifty-Five Dialogues, trans. Thomas Taylor, 5 vols (London: R. Wilks, 1804), 1:363.