• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The knowledge that we value the most is the knowledge for which we can provide the strongest justifications. To what extent would you agree with this claim?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Humans possess many kinds of knowledge; knowledge that was arrived at logically, knowledge based on perceptions, and religious knowledge are all some examples. This combination of knowledge gives us an advantage and separates us from the rest of the species on Earth, so it can be said to be of great value to mankind. However of all the knowledge that we have individually, some are more valuable than others. I believe the knowledge that we value the most is the knowledge for which we can provide the strongest justifications. The definition of knowledge itself is justified true beliefs ; therefore the more justifications we have for a true belief, the more proof we have for the knowledge to be valid. With strong justifications, we are also less likely to question the truth behind certain knowledge, and would be more compelled to believe it. Arriving at valid knowledge through logic is an example that offers strong justifications. For example, if all of A is B, and all of B is C, then we can logically deduce that all of A must be C. There would be no way to question this conclusion because its justifications allow no room for doubt, so we can positively accept that all A must be C. This knowledge holds its value in that its justifications are so concrete that it would be impossible for us to question it, and the fact that we can now accept it as knowledge with little doubt offers a comforting effect. ...read more.

Middle

This has caused problems in the past, and a very famous case involved the famous Galileo Galilei. Galileo had strong empirical justifications that the solar system was heliocentric, or Sun centered, while the widely accepted knowledge at that time was that the solar system was geocentric, or earth centered. The geocentric idea spawned from verses in the Psalm that stated "the world is firmly established, it cannot be moved."(Psalm 93:1) and "the sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises."(Ecclesiastes 1:5) Galileo argued that the Scriptures were speaking figuratively and not literally, which was the way it was interpreted by the Church. Despite his pleading, his work was not allowed to be published and he was placed in exile. However as we know today through modern proof, Galileo had in fact been right about the heliocentric solar system. Another reason that Scriptures are weak justifications is due to their questionable source. They were written by other individuals long ago based on their own perceptions and thoughts, so they cannot be argued as strong justifications, the fact that scriptures differ dramatically between religions solidifies this fact. Religious knowledge can be said to be based on weak justifications. But does that make it not valuable? Most of the world would strongly argue against that. ...read more.

Conclusion

Only upon seeing her taking care of the other children again do I remember all the fun times my class has had in the past. These memories were subdued because of my strong belief that she was a wicked woman, and other imprecise memories may even have formed as a result of this. Studies have actually been conducted by psychologists such as Bartlett and Loftus that showed memory reconstruction to contain inaccuracies. This shows that our own memories can in fact be based on weak justifications as well, even though we may trust it and feel that they are comprised of strong justifications. Contrasting the weak justifications of memory with the stronger justifications in math such as 2+2=4 makes the latter seem more reliable as knowledge. Yet again the case presents itself of whether that necessarily makes math more valuable because it holds stronger justifications. The subjectivity behind what is "valuable" becomes evident again and individuals can have unique ways of defining what is valuable to them. A person's memory can be seen as more central to them as a human being, despite the fact that it may be partly inaccurate. Personally I hold knowledge with the strongest justifications as being the most valuable, because then I can be sure of its validity and depend upon it without worries. This kind of reliable knowledge is also what gave humanity its power to produce all the technologies of today, which are quite valuable to us. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge essays

  1. The extent and type of our language defines our knowledge of the world. Do ...

    However, this does not mean that Chinese speakers can not conceptualize what is the present, past and future. In the same way, English, unlike Spanish, French or German, is a language that does not use grammatical gender to nouns, but English speakers are completely able to understand that other languages assign genders to nouns.

  2. The knowledge that we value the most is the knowledge for which we can ...

    One example of this would come from my personal life. "Through out my life I have liked cookie dough ice cream. This is because I love the taste of cold cookie dough." As you can see, this statement, which is true in my life, is knowledge with a very weak justification.

  1. All knowledge claims should be open to rational criticism. On what grounds and to ...

    the basic axioms of arithmetic do not lead to a contradiction at some point." ("Is Arithmetic Consistent?") So, when different branches of mathematics are used in order to prove something more abstract such as modelling real life phenomena, there exists difficulty in detecting which claims are made from falsely assumed truths or contradictions.

  2. To what extent can we rely on the knowledge provided by human scientists?

    This happened with Professor Phil Jones of the University of East Anglia's CRU in 2010. He was criticized for basing his theory of world warming from data taken in sparse weather stations in Siberia, where data is sparse. Different peer reviews were presented to him, but he did not accept

  1. In expanding the field of knowledge we but increase the horizon of ignorance.- Henry ...

    However, it was not until Galileo questioned this idea of a geocentric universe and rejected it because of his own results, rather than forcing the already acknowledged answer onto his findings, that we were able to move forward in our journey of acquiring knowledge.

  2. One definition of knowledge is true belief based on strong evidence. What makes evidence ...

    Indeed, some people have proved the resurrection of Jesus through the principles of law - the six disciples who were witness to his resurrection all testified to it, without any reason to lie. ??Maths is what many would call absolute knowledge, in that it cannot be disproved once proved.

  1. Examine the Claim That It Is Possible to Attain Knowledge Despite Problems of Bias ...

    If I am affected, others will be as well as I am. However, as one claim always has its two-sidedness, the counter claim of this issue is that knowledge can be attained despite problems of bias and selection.

  2. That which can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence. (Christopher Hitchens). ...

    No one dismissed these claims basically because it suited them. One might then raise the knowledge issue whether a knower dismisses or accepts assertions because of the evidence or because of convenience. As far as the Human Sciences are concerned, evidence is not always to be found.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work