Do all knowledge come from experience?

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  1. hubby7 profile image64
    hubby7posted 9 years ago

    It is said that "All knowledge comes from experience". If that is true, can it be argued that we can only know those things that we experiece? If so, can it be argued that our experience limit what we can know? If so, since we don't share all our experiences in common, it follows--does it--that we might not know things that others know since we have not had that experience? Or, to put it in the words of Christ, "Unless you be born again, you cannot enter the kingdom of heaven". Or to put in still other words, how can you know about love unless you first experience it? You might hear about it, but you will never really know it until you experience it first hand. Again, the question is: Does our experience limit our knowledge?

    1. blue dog profile image68
      blue dogposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      dude, you need to market whatever it is you're smoking, or injecting.

      1. hubby7 profile image64
        hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this
      2. profile image0
        annvansposted 9 years agoin reply to this

        Lol, lmao, weeew

    2. tantrum profile image60
      tantrumposted 9 years agoin reply to this

        It looks like your experience is definitely limiting your knowledge big_smile

      1. hubby7 profile image64
        hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this

          It looks like your experience is definitely limiting your knowledge big_smile

        OMG!!

  2. PhilD41 profile image60
    PhilD41posted 9 years agoin reply to this

    Hummm... An interesting way to pose the question.  The simple answer would have to be yes.  Without an experience there is nothing to know.  This goes back to the tree falling in the forest and the sound it makes.  Those that are around (animals or people) have the experience to answer this.  It is required for the knowledge of that particular event.  Also true with those that happily make due with very little.  They are happy because the don't 'know' what they are missing.  The experience is absent.

    The catch to this is that it does not have to be a personal experience.  I am very capable of gaining knowledge at the expense of someone else's experiences.  I did this for many many years in school.  I can explain in detail the chemical events and physical effects of rocket fuel mixing with oxygen and heat without every having ignited or flown in a rocket.  Someone had to though.  Without their experiences the knowledge wouldn't exist.

    Linking this train of logic to love opens a whole other aspect.  Mainly is our knowledge gained from others accurate?  Is it skewed by our own experiences?  Many may have knowledge of love (pick a type) by observation or conversation without having experience it personally.  I expect this may even cause people to act in certain ways in the hope of having a personal experience.  After all, that is what drives millions to the lottery isn't it?

    Another thing to keep in mind is that knowledge and understanding are not one and the same.  My 3 year old son can explain that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.  He can even explain that while it is dark here the sun is shining in India.  He has knowledge.  He has no understanding of why it sets or even how.  Planetary orbits are still slightly above him.  In this case, he has knowledge, just not a full understanding.  Again, there is a distortion of knowledge as it applies to understanding based on his experiences.

    So, one may know love without experiencing it first.  The understanding of this love will undoubtedly be marred by the limits of their experiences but I don't believe this negates the underlying knowledge.  A simple example would again be my son.  He had the knowledge that chocolate tasted good even though he had never had any.  He gained that knowledge by observing my wife and I enjoy it.  This caused him to seek a personal experience of eating chocolate based on his knowledge.  Once he had some I expect his understanding of the taste and desirability of chocolate changed.  I expect the knowledge that it was good remained though.

    At least that is what my experiences tell me.   ;-)

    Sorry for the book.  For whatever reason this just sounded fun to respond to.  I didn't proof read it so take it as it is. :-)

    1. hubby7 profile image64
      hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this
      1. hubby7 profile image64
        hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this

        Your reply is more convoluted and lengthier than my question. Blue dog might think that we both smoking the same stuff. But on a more serious note, I agree that we can not only know things first hand through direct experience, but that we can also come to know things indirectly through the experience of others. One thing I do disagree with you on is your statement that "I expect the knowledge that it was good remained though". Chocolate, I would tend to argue is neither good nor bad. It's neutral. Whether it is good or bad is attributed to it by those who are doing the tasting. If you said that knowledge that chocolate is good to both you and your wife, you suspect, will remain with him, then I would be in total agreement with you. Thanks for the thoughtful reply.

        1. PhilD41 profile image60
          PhilD41posted 9 years agoin reply to this

          Except I was making a comment on knowledge I had gained by observing him.  His understanding of the knowledge he received by watching my wife and I let him to believe it was good or desirable.  From his reaction I am lead to believe that he still holds this understanding.  You are right though.  Chocolate is neutral.  I do know a few individuals that can't stand it. smile

  3. tksensei profile image61
    tksenseiposted 9 years agoin reply to this

    NO knowledge comes from experience.

    1. hubby7 profile image64
      hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this

      If not experience, tksensei, then where does it come from?

      1. tksensei profile image61
        tksenseiposted 9 years agoin reply to this

        It is in us apriori.

        1. profile image0
          Madame Xposted 9 years agoin reply to this

          Ahhhh.

          1. tksensei profile image61
            tksenseiposted 9 years agoin reply to this

            You Kant deny it!

            1. profile image0
              Madame Xposted 9 years agoin reply to this

              Go further East . . .

  4. darkside profile image80
    darksideposted 9 years agoin reply to this

    Actually no, some say all knowledge comes from experience. It is just one theory.

    Look up "epistemology". It will get you thinking.

  5. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image61
    JYOTI KOTHARIposted 9 years agoin reply to this

    Experience is perhaps the mightiest tool of knowledge either of your own or of some one else.
    However, human brain has a specific power to imagine and we can get knowledge by imagination too.
    Thanks,
    Jyoti Kothari

  • profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 9 years ago

    Of course our experience limits our knowledge. But living vicarously can be fun too. But that is indeed an experience.

    1. hubby7 profile image64
      hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for your input, Hoxie.

  • Aqua profile image82
    Aquaposted 9 years ago

    This is too existential for me - I've been doing algebra all day.

    Though even if I hadn't been doing algebra all day - it's still too existential for me smile

    1. hubby7 profile image64
      hubby7posted 9 years agoin reply to this

      I love algebra, Aqua. But I love philosophy more!

  • profile image0
    ralwusposted 9 years ago

    Does not knowledge come from college too? What is knowledge? I certainly got some the first and only time I did acid sooo long ago. LOL

  • rebekahELLE profile image87
    rebekahELLEposted 9 years ago

    knowledge is more than experience, is all experience knowledge??

    I don't think so, we may experience something we don't know anything about.. except whatever we felt.  :0

  • Aya Katz profile image82
    Aya Katzposted 9 years ago

    The absence of experience is also a form of knowledge. People who were raised bilingual may never know what it is like to be an adult monolingual. People who have been in love may not know what it's like to have gone through life and never fallen in love. People who can hear have no idea what it might be like to have been born deaf. People who can see do not know what it is to be blind.

    Because of this, it is very difficult to share our experiences -- and also our lack of experience -- with others.

    1. rebekahELLE profile image87
      rebekahELLEposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      love this, excellent observation~~

  • gandalfthegrey profile image60
    gandalfthegreyposted 9 years ago

    Read every book, on every subject you can lay your hands on! Some knowledge is gained through life experience, through books you can read biographies of great Historical figures, learning of their times, torments and tribulations.
    Human life is very short, unfortunately, through Literature and biographies you can sample the life experiences of many thousands of people in vastly different settings and situations to your own. People from every corner and time on Earth. Read.
    Talk to old and young people from every country you are able to. This will greatly add to your knowledge of other people and places, it will also add to the person you are becoming.
    I am 58 years young, I've worked and travelled all over Canada and the Northern U.S., nearly worn myself out doing it, but I've enjoyed evey minute. It has all contributed to the person I am becoming.
    Good luck, long life and experience everything you can, for to soon it will be over.

    1. rebekahELLE profile image87
      rebekahELLEposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      love your answer here and I so agree~~~ there is no one we cannot learn from. travel opens our minds to experiences we would never know otherwise~~~  always an open mind ~~

  • elisabethkcmo profile image72
    elisabethkcmoposted 9 years ago

    I've heard "wisdom comes from knowledge and experience"
    I realize that's not exactly the subject, but that's what came to mind when I read the topic.

    1. Sybil Marie profile image68
      Sybil Marieposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      I like that. I think knowledge can be gained from books,college,people. Wisdom comes as we put that knowledge into practice, which creates our experience. if we are mindful these two together will bring wisdom. smile

  • Rochelle Frank profile image94
    Rochelle Frankposted 9 years ago

    My mom always said that life is too short to learn everything by experience-- that's why we have to learn some things from the experiences of others.

  • Paradise7 profile image83
    Paradise7posted 9 years ago

    I read a lot.  I find out a lot of information that I haven't directly experienced in any way through reading.  It is knowledge gained through the synthesis of other's thoughts, knowledge and ideas; something new comes from something old.

    So, no.  Not all knowledge comes from experience.  If it did, every single person would start over from square one, having to experience all that went before...there wouldn't be science, or universities, there wouldn't be anything to build on from the people that came before us.

    1. JYOTI KOTHARI profile image61
      JYOTI KOTHARIposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      Agreed.

      Jyoti Kothari

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