In The Matrix Morpheus says:

When the Matrix was first built, there was a man born inside who had the ability to change whatever he wanted, to remake the Matrix as he saw fit. It was he who freed the first of us, taught us the truth.

But as we see from when Neo was freed, if the humans who saved him hadn't been there, he would have simply drowned in the sewers below. So how come those who were first freed didn't drown? Were humans alive outside of the Matrix who saved them from drowning when they were freed? Or how did they survive?

  • Because it's all a giant hoax. The machines would no doubt turn a blind eye to the humans stealing whatever equipment they need to set up a functioning society
    – Valorum
    Sep 24, 2016 at 10:50
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    Possible duplicate of Why do the machines allow/initiate the building of a new Zion?
    – Valorum
    Sep 24, 2016 at 10:52
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    @Valorum: I've read the question and its answer you linked. But that still doesn't answer my question for me, when you are ejected from the Matrix you fall into the sewers, so somebody would have to be there to rescue you. So the first Humans ejected from the Matrix (those 16 males and 7 females) must have been rescued from the sewers by someone otherwise they would be dead unless it happened another way. So who saved them?
    – user41730
    Sep 24, 2016 at 11:03
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    They would undoubtedly have fallen somewhere shallow (my, what a stroke of fortune) and been collected by "the one" before they drowned. Don't forget that the whole thing is a sham. It makes no sense for the machines to release these individuals only for them to immediately drown.
    – Valorum
    Sep 24, 2016 at 11:51

2 Answers 2


There are a number of possibilities. There are a number of AI programs with free will. At least a few of them (such as the Oracle) seem to sympathize with or support humans. So it would not be impossible for the first humans to have been saved by sympathetic AI.

Second, most of human civilization seem to be built around a lie. The prophecy of the One was created by the Architect to achieve a measure of control over a flaw in the system. Human civilization could have been specifically encouraged to happen as part of the system to mitigate the flaw. In this case most of what humans believe about the origins of their society would be a lie created by the machines.

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    "Saved by a sympathetic AI" How?
    – Era
    Oct 4, 2016 at 14:47
  • @DavidCram Well? Apr 11, 2017 at 18:04
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    @SonOfSam Any greater level of detail would be pure opinion. I am only going as far as there is at least some supporting evidence in universe.
    – David Cram
    Apr 11, 2017 at 20:59

The Architect lays it out plainly in The Matrix Reloaded:

The function of the One is now to return to the Source, allowing a temporary dissemination of the code you carry, reinserting the prime program. After which, you will be required to select from the Matrix 23 individuals - 16 female, 7 male - to rebuild Zion.

It is implied that the machines will unplug these people and ensure they can start anew, quite certainly setting them up with all the infrastructure they need.

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