Monday, October 06, 2008

Learn gratia Knowledgis

Can there be an unbiased learning of any piece of knowledge where the objective to learn is anything other than "to know"?

Argument- Any knowledge when sought with an ulterior motive - biases the study towards that motive instead of the knowledge itself, unadulterated. As a result, aspects of the knowledge that do not cater to or do not seem highly relevant to the objective are ignored or ill-understood.

Counter- Neccessity is the mother of invention, etc. All engineering came about as man learnt to apply science in order to solve other problems. A step further - the desire to know is always given birth from a different need - say a desire for food, or shelter, or entertainment or pride. So the "other bad impure objective" is the very reason that the "desire to know" was born.

Will need examples. 

3 comments:

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Nenlos said...
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Nenlos said...

An example from fiction -
Edmond Dantes learnt all he could from Faria although he expected his whole life to be spent in prison. I can't think of any objective other than 'to know'.

On another note, do you think 'knowing' is the objective? Wouldn't edifying oneself, widening one's perspective etc. also be objectives? And if they are, wouldn't they go beyond just the knowing? You learn to gain knowledge and you gain knowledge for the above two reasons (among others). So, all pursuit of knowledge satisfies only a myopic goal - knowing - but it may be that we all seek something beyond just that, what?