Talons Philosophy

An Open Online Highschool Philosophy Course

By

Knowledge is the accumulation of subjectively true information accessible to a sentient being.

Knowledge is the accumulation of subjectively true information accessible to a sentient being.

Information =/= knowledge but knowledge = information.

Information only becomes knowledge when it is accessible to a sentient being.

 

For example a book may provide information, but a book can not know things. If the writer of the book dies before anyone else has read the book then no one knows what information resides within. If within the book was written the sentence, “lava is hot.” and you were to read it, you would then know that the book says lava is hot. You would not necessarily know whether or not lava actually is hot, only that the books says it is. If you had never experienced lava before then you would not simply all of a sudden know that lava is hot, the book could say “lava is cold” and you would be none the wiser. The book could provide untrue information but just because you read somewhere that something is something, does not mean that you know that it is, you only know that you have read that it is what it is. Information does not have to be true, but knowledge has to be true subjectively for it to be knowledge. If you were to experience lava yourself and you were to touch it, you would then know whether or not it was hot or not.

 

We can not know things objectively, we can only know things subjectively.

 

My post gets quite solipsistic here in that we can not know that an objective world exists, we can only be sure that our subjective experience exists. Likewise we can not know things objectively, only subjectively. We can read a book that states “lava is hot” and we would know that we have read that lava is hot, but we can not know that lava exists, or that the book exists outside of our experience with it. You can know how to ride a bike but you can’t know that your bike exists objectively. If you were to touch lava and it was hot, you would know that when you touched it, you felt heat, but you would not know objectively that your body actually did heat up and you would not know objectively that if you touched it again that it would not be cold. You could only know if it would be cold the next time you touched it if you touched it again, and even then you wouldn’t know if you would get the same result again if you tried a third time.  You could do the same experiment 999,999,999 times and get the same result but you wouldn’t know what result you’ll get the 1,000,000,000th time until you do it the 1,000,000,000th time, you would only know what result you got the first 999,999,999 times.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solipsism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sentience

 

 

One Response to Knowledge is the accumulation of subjectively true information accessible to a sentient being.

  1. joel says:

    Solid argument! I like the example of the book, and how you only know what you’ve read or been told, but you don’t know by your own experience. And also the idea that you never know even if you try something a million times that you still don’t know that you’ll get the same result the next time. Maybe a little short, but this definitely gets the point across clearly. Really cool theory!

     

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

css.php