To what extent do personal attributes affect the ways of knowing and why if at all does answering this questions matter?

Essay by rfridhandlerHigh School, 11th gradeA, January 2007

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There are many means by which one can come to have knowledge, "logically, empirically, authority, memory, faith, moral belief, introspection, empathy, conscience, practice, acquaintance, and instincts" (p.g, Ways of Knowing). Ways of knowing are methods by which we have means to discover the truth. There is knowledge which is universally accepted as true as well as knowledge that is approached with caution when accepting its truth, knowledge through faith for example may be come across with uncertainty for its lack of verifiability. Personal attributes are what make ones knowledge collection different for every one else. Who you are also affects how you know, and what you know to a great extent.

There are certain ways of knowing which are influenced by personal attributes in an obvious manner, while others are more subtle. Knowledge though authority is an obvious example of the impact of personal attributes on the ways of knowing.

Knowledge is vital to individuals, it is central to our undertakings, and what a person is willing to accept as true leads him or her to their own collection of knowledge. For knowledge to be attained through authority requires a person to trust the source. When in school a student must trust the lecturer, the textbooks, facts, or and data points that are given. Authority figures are not infallible. For instance, when a mother tells her child that if he or she does not eat their broccoli they will get sick, the mother can be proven incorrect. Knowing that these credible sources are flawed in accordance with certain situations makes it a little harder to accept all information a source may give. To learn from authority one must trust the source, while keeping logic. The trust that is needed in order to accept the knowledge is vital as knowledge attained...