This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Does All Knowledge Come From Experience?

1207 words - 5 pages

Does all knowledge come from experience ?From the classical empiricist point of view, -traditionally associated with John Locke, and primarily his 'Essay Concerning Human Understanding'- almost certainly so. Locke's epistemological contention was that knowledge is derived from experiential concepts acquired in the form of sense-data. These sense-data were supposed, according to Locke, to be of primary and secondary qualities, which when combined with and abstracted from each other gave rise to tertiary qualities. Examples of primary qualities in an object would be the size and shape of, say; an apple. These qualities are independent of an observer and remain constant with or without our knowledge or appreciation of them. The red colour and fresh smell of the apple, would be examples of its secondary qualities; these qualities, Locke argued, are not intrinsic to the object in question, but rather are only manifest in the sensory perception of the observer. The apple is red when we perceive it as such, however the degree of its redness is something that varies according to the individual, I might perceive it as a deep crimson, while another might think it as scarlet in hue. These secondary qualities of the apple, then, come into existence only upon receipt of the sense-data of which they are determined. Tertiary or complex concepts of objects are arrived at by the process of conjoinment, abstraction or combination of its primary and secondary qualities, to pursue the earlier example; one's concept of the apple's freshness, perhaps, would be determined by the combination of one's concepts of its shape, colour, smell, skin texture and taste.Here the empiricist argument runs into the realm of inconsistency, especially in light of the attempt to extrapolate how these concepts come to be combined. The theory of direct combination suggests that simple concepts are merely 'stuck together', much like lego bricks, to form more complex concepts of things. This theory is implausible and has very limiting epistemological implications as it precludes all notions of negation and generality. For, in the example of negation, if one has a concept of the colour red, how can one arrive at the more complex concept of non-red through direct combination alone. In terms of generality, it is impossible to derive the complex concept of philanthropy, solely by reckoning upon the concept of love for one fellow human being and the use direct combination. The more coherent theory of logical combination, relies upon deductive reasoning and abstraction for construction of complex concepts, and thus inherently undermines the very argument upon which radical empiricist theories are based. Other theories, such as psychological combination rely upon similarly abstruse and non-experiential functions, and as such are similarly inconsistent to the radical empiricist view, -they may even be seen to positively argue against it.Intrinsic to Locke's argument is the denial of that mainstay...

Find Another Essay On Does All Knowledge Come From Experience?

Knowledge gained from books and knowledge gained from experience

521 words - 3 pages helpful. For instance, take the case of share broker who has a little knowledge about the stock exchange terms. However, his vast experince in the long term help him to cope up with all the ups and down in the share market. But his experince will be of a little help if he does not know some of the crucial terms and will put him in jeopardy. Such crucial terms can be gained through reading the books only and not through experinced.In sum, it is

Where does Stress Come From and How does It Affect a Pregnant Mother and her Unborn Child

1831 words - 8 pages Stress is a word that is overused and misunderstood. Stress can range from being overwhelmed while trying to find an outfit to wear to procrastinating on a research paper. It can come from seven different areas: life changes, chronic stressors, job stressors, hassles, frustration, conflict, and cataclysmic events (Huffman, 2012). In the following, these topics will be discussed: stress, how stress affects the mother during pregnancy, how

We may not have come from the same place, but we all want to move in the same direction

881 words - 4 pages the issues of race we have in America and how it hinders our nation from moving forward. Ethos is competent by President Obama giving factual information. Giving examples from historical references; he illuminates his family tree. (Par. 6). “I am the son of a black man from Kenya and a white woman from Kansas. I was raised with the help of a white grandfather who survived a Depression to serve in Patton's Army during World War II and a white

What does it mean to 'think sociologically'? Illustrate your answer with examples from sociological research and from your own experience

1895 words - 8 pages different societies on an equal basis therefore avoiding ethnocentrism. The sociological use of culture is sometimes but not all that different to that of anthropologists (Willis 1999: 47), although anthropologists are perhaps more likely to examine cultural artefacts and make comparisons across cultures. A cultural attentiveness also encourages sociologists to consider issues on scales large and small, from the behaviour of individuals within

The depth of knowledge to be gained from books is much richer and broader than what can be learned from direct experience

598 words - 2 pages As a well known proverb put "never too old to learn", it is necessary for us all to learn ceaselessly throughout our lifetime. Recent days there are many debates that from which means -- knowledge in books or direct experience -- we learn much richer and broader? As far as I concern, it is a case to case issue in one's learning process. In some aspects, people may learn much richer and broader knowledge from books than direct experience, while

“Fear always springs from ignorance” by Ralph Waldo Emerson. In this quote, the speaker expresses one effect that is caused by ignorance. One who does not possess much knowledge will always feel fear....

929 words - 4 pages Untitled "Fear always springs from ignorance" by Ralph Waldo Emerson. In this quote, the speaker expresses one effect that is caused by ignorance. One who does not possess much knowledge will always feel fear. Since a person lacks knowledge, they are unable to assume and use deductive reasoning. Not knowing much causes them to worry and worry turns into fear. This quote can be explained in many works of literature. In &quot

The Apache: where they come from, their way of life, and all their history

1351 words - 5 pages towards each other. The Apache people originally settled three desert regions with the Navajo around A.D. 850: the Great Basin, the Sonoran Desert, and the Chihuachuan Desert. The Navajo were never actually part of the Apache nation, and all they have in common is the language, which long ago came from northern Canada. The Apache consisted of six main big groups which all spoke different dialects of the Athabscan language. The Western Apache

Psychotherapy How Does Psychotherapy Works And How Is It Different From All Other Therapy

595 words - 3 pages psychotherapy in some of the state hospitals. It is committed to the hospital unless the condition of the patients is really serious. Beside that, the percentage of the patients who were recovered from psychotherapy treatments was not too high. It might had a good effection because psychotherapy is not fully effective, it might also takes a long time to make the patients has a better health condition. Also the article proved that two-third of

Relativism vs. Empiricism

615 words - 2 pages and also detached experience as truth, it believes that knowledge and truth is objective, that there should be an established truth in order for knowledge to grow. For empiricists ones experience is considered and option or that it is biased,In the view of rationalists, relativists however, knowledge is in fact subjective in a way that it does not only come from data, evidence and detached experience that one's own experience is the most

Objective Knowledge

1479 words - 6 pages think that if she will break up with a guy, she will be lonely for the rest of her life. There is no evidence, no confirmation that this is what will happen and if someone will try to repeat same actions they will have different outcome. Where does the knowledge come from and what is its’ nature? There are still debates over this question. Among philosophers there were two main points of view – internalism and externalism. Externalists thought

KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT AN ORGANIZATION BEHAVIORAL APPROACH

4088 words - 17 pages competencies either by collaboration with other companies or within the internal of the companies. In a company, the daily activities can contribute to the development of knowledge. Among the barriers faced by knowledge development are innovations do not come in a relaxed, planned environment. New ideas are generated through conflicts, changes or improvement from existing products, and the need of freedom to pursue the new ideas. Thus, all the ways

Similar Essays

Does All Knowledge Come From Experience? I F Not Where Does It Come From? If So, How Do You Explain Our Knowledge Of Necessary Truths?

1532 words - 7 pages between the two colours even though this knowledge does not come from experience. A valid reply to this argument is that this person is combining the simple ideas of the blues which they already know with their understanding of the idea of differing shades (which they must have if they have the idea of these two blues) in order to construct the complex idea of a shade of blue in between the two which they already known, therefore they don't rely on

God Wills All Men To Be Saved And To Come To The Knowledge Of The Truth (Nab)

1653 words - 7 pages This paper will defend what Christians should mean by 1Timothy 2:3-4, “This is good and pleasing to God our savior, who wills everyone to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” This scripture has been interpreted many ways by many theologians, but I shall defend the scripture with the knowledge and understanding of what this scripture means. (1) God desires that all men be saved because “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promises

Where Does Law Come From? Essay

1329 words - 5 pages Where does law come from? Law has been defined in many ways by various leaders and thinkers but there is no universal definition. There are numerous sources and the English legal system adopts the rules derived from these various sources to form the English law. Sources of law include common law and equity, legislation, and international conventions such as the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR). It must be noted that customs or

Where Does Conscious Thought Come From?

747 words - 3 pages causes this sudden decisions? Where do they come from? And how do we know what is in our conscious? Where does that information come from? Are we born with such a complex thought process built into our brains or is it our brain storing past experiences or learned behavior? Many theorists claim that our subconscious is not even part of our brain, but that it is in fact part of our soul or spirit. So are we born with our souls and therefore our