International Baccalaureate


How can the different ways of knowing help us to distinguish between something that is true and something that is believed to be true?

Author: Luka Dremelj

Mentor: mag. Matevž Rudl 

Word count: 1005

Date: 28/5/2009

Our quest of finding truth in life, which is a journey of a thousand miles, begins not with a step, but rather a thought. It is the miracle of the human mind to be able to think emotionally as well as rationally about the acquired information from our senses and later even being able to express ourselves through language. These are the four ways of knowing, all of them tell a great deal about ourselves on their own, but in combination, they may just help us obtain the real truth, if such a thing even exists.

So what is truth? Truth has to this day not yet been specifically defined, but there are several ways of explaining it. One of them is the common truth, which is usually presented upon us by the society we live in. Such an example would be that prostitution is immoral. One would see this as human trafficking and sexual abuse with no benefits to the society. We cannot draw the line and say this is true, because not all people including some successful prostitutes would agree as gave them the opportunity for better living standards. The more referred to truth is reality. What we see, touch, smell, fell and hear we consider our reality. So if our reality is truth, therefore we need our senses to perceive and understand it. Or better yet use our ways of knowing to realize it. An important way of knowing to mention is unfortunately one we take for granted, as most of us use it so frequently there is a chance we may even forget that it’s there. Language is the harmony of the body and soul combined. It has the ability to express anything from tears of joy to whimpering cries and although perceived as a physical ability it is actually the embodiment of wondrous thoughts. No other tool has helped humanity in so many versatile ways as did the written or spoken word. Language is all around us; even paintings are said to possess a thousand words as does other art. The reason for our addiction to language is the fact that with it we are free. Words have the power to both destroy and heal, yet we forget their potentials and leave them unrealized. Words spoken untruthfully or harmfully and deceitfully may shake our faith in language and drive us to seek understanding and truth in the other ways of knowing. Another problem with language is that it may not be precise. Most people don’t say what they want to say, so the words might not contain the desired information. These are some of the problems of language. However, we can discern such possibilities by a simple chat and the intention of finding truth through other thinkers via language. Yet again, how do we know they speak the truth?

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Language is the voice of reason, which is in the decisions that are able to generate conclusions from assumptions or premises. Reason is but more than just an acquaintance of emotion, which is a mental and physiological state associated with a mixture of behavior, feelings and thoughts. To put it simply the two are in love. As is with love, a couple may cuddle or quarrel, depending on the current situation their relationship found itself in. Unfortunately, most relationships tend to have a dominator and a submitter, meaning that we can rarely come across a fulfillment of both. Or in ...

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