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Which sources of knowledgebooks, web sites, the media, personal experience, authorities or some other - do you consider most trustworthy, and why?

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Introduction

Which sources of knowledge-books, web sites, the media, personal experience, authorities or some other - do you consider most trustworthy, and why? The human hunger for knowledge will never be satisfied. This is why people utilize various sources such as books, web sites, the media, and personal experiences to gain a greater understanding of the world. From the afore mentioned sources of knowledge, all of them are secondary except for one's personal experiences, meaning that the knowledge we obtain is from other people's research and observations. There are many limitations to both these types of knowledge (primary and secondary) when assessing which source is the most trustworthy. Although, before assessing which source is the most trustworthy, we must first define what trustworthy knowledge is and how we can recognize it. One normally equates trust with the truth, as defined by a source's credibility and reliability. If a source is seemingly reliable, we may say that it is true and thus we can trust it. Another basis to take into consideration is whether the knowledge gained is supported by positive evidence and whether the knowledge is coherent (fits in with our current understanding of things). ...read more.

Middle

Although I was warned not to use Wikipedia as a source, I went on anyway. As I was reading through the information I found someone had edited it and written that the moon was made out of cheese. At the time I was old enough to know that the moon was not made out of cheese, but I did realize that Wikipedia in fact was not a reliable source of knowledge. This example attacks all three criteria of deeming whether a source is trustworthy, as Wikipedia is not reliable, there was no evidence provided, and the information was not coherent as it did not fit in with my understanding of the moon. Thus, the internet is not a trustworthy source of information either. The media, which is expected to have an "aura of objectivity surrounding it" (Richard van de Lagemaat), obviously sometimes contains some bias in the selection and presentation of news. First we must differentiate between the various types of media. If the news presented is about celebrity gossip one must realize that this type of media's sole aim is to attract as many viewers/listeners/readers as possible, and thus can not be trustworthy as most of the information is just rumors or simply fictional. ...read more.

Conclusion

Is it a reliable source of justifying our knowledge claim from our personal experiences? Since intuition is like our sixth sense, or like a hunch they can not be trusted as a way to justify our personal experiences as a source of knowledge. Thus, our personal experiences are not reliable as we can not trust our five senses, our reason, or our intuition to give us the truth. In conclusion, although there is no source of knowledge that I can deem as being the most trustworthy, I believe that we must rely on all of these sources as a method to gain knowledge and then interpret them by talking to other people with different opinions. This can give us a more balanced picture of any knowledge claim, whether it is concerning history, science, or current day events. I believe this to be the only source of knowledge to be trustworthy as sharing opinions should eliminate most biases and limitations that other sources of knowledge have. Different points of views on various topics can improve our self-knowledge and help us develop an objective view of things which will be reliable, that can be backed up by evidence, and that is coherent. If these three criteria are met by using various sources of knowledge to obtain the ultimate truth, then one can deem this method as being trustworthy. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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