The Paradoxical Nature of Knowledge


A doctrine in philosophy is a very paradoxical statement. Having a Ph.D. means that one has reached the highest recognition of his knowledge in a specific field. Yet, it is paradoxical, because the very basic nature of the practice of philosophy suggests that there is no such thing as knowing everything that there is to know about any subject, or knowing anything for that matter. If one thinks he knows much, in a philosophical view, he knows nothing. Knowledge itself is a state that can never be reached. One can never know enough. Therefore one can never reach any sort of recognition in any field of knowledge. However, it can be argued, that knowing that no man can know the truth, is impossible. There is much irony in this theory of knowledge, and the foundation ideas of this theory leave it to questioning of its authenticity, or in other words of its truth. A great example of this theory was suggested by a great philosopher by the name of Socrates. He suggested that one should not be afraid of death, because he does not know what death is, and therefore he should not fear the unknown. Keeping this in mind, can we, human beings – the children of something greater than us, ever consider this idea… having known and suffered the affects of death in one form or another? Once again, it is possible to say that our ignorance of death permits us to have an alluded idea of what death really is, resulting in this suffering. But how can such suffering come from a false knowledge. One must be truly ignorant not to see the sad reality of death. And is it not evident, that fear of death, and a will to survive, under even the harshest possible conditions, all show one thing - that there is an instinct programmed into us from the day we are born to the day we die, which tells us, death is a bad thing, and living is the right thing. One other example that points to a whole in the ideas of Socrates, is the improvement of technology, a direct product of increased knowledge, on our everyday lives.


True, it is not possible to know all there is to know about a subject, but it would be false to say that one can never have a certain degree of knowledge about the universe we were born to.