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Can we have beliefs or knowledge, which are independent of our culture?

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Introduction

´╗┐GUNJAN JAIN Candidate Number ? 006166-007 ________________ TOK ESSAY ________________ Can we have beliefs or knowledge, which are independent of our culture? Gunjan Jain Candidate Number ? 006166-007 ________________ Culture, according to me, defines the way we behave, interact, the way we wear and in other words culture defines what we are. However, our question is do culture define our knowledge or beliefs too? CAN WE HAVE BELEIFS OR KNOWLEDGE, WHICH ARE INDEPENDENT OF CULTURE? Before heading on let us understand what do I meant by culture here. Culture includes the attitudes, feelings, values, and behavior that characterizes and inform society as a whole or any social group within it.[1] Obviously, a person resided in a particular society or culture will bear its impact too but are these that much strong that they can actually influence the knowledge? Let us take an example from our daily life. When we see our clock at school or at home, we never bother to think beyond what is obvious, why are we using clocks, which have been divided, into 12 parts? ...read more.

Middle

is attacking another way of knowing. Culture transforms our thinking way and ultimately our views. The path we choose to look into any matter to gain knowledge, if is culturally influenced, then our gained piece of knowledge will be biased. We acquire knowledge through sense perception and emotional reactions too.[2] Are these or can these too be culturally biased? No, the answer is no. For example, we can acquire knowledge about someone?s nature or mood, if we study their facial expression and we know that this is far and far away from what is so called as culture. These are biological responses to our stimuli and so are independent of culture.[3] If our ways of knowing are targets of culture, can our areas of knowledge remain prevented? Let us take example from History. It is a truth about History that history change with the change of country or region. European people will have their own past defining their leaders, their people, as best and strongest one while Africans will insist that they are the best as their history depicts better of them. ...read more.

Conclusion

I meant by the most prominent areas of knowing, according to me, that is Mathematics and Sciences. Mathematics and Sciences have their own proven methods that cannot be influenced by any ?External? terms, so culture here too has no chance to distract the Mathematical and scientific theories and calculations. Taking an example ? while solving a particular, mathematical problem an American would get the same answer as an Indian, I would get and the reason behind that is mathematics is universally accepted bearer of laws, theories, axioms, etc. that are required to solve any given problem related to quantity, shape and arrangement. In my opinion, mathematics and sciences have their own ability and do not rely on any external terms, so to think any possibility in which these are hanging under culture is a waste of time! Our conclusion is more like in favor of the topic. Yes, our knowledge and beliefs can be independent of our culture; in addition, we must not depend on our culture to provide us with knowledge, as it is not a reliable source and each piece of information through the path of culture must be properly checked and verified before claiming it to be reliable. ...read more.

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