The Theory of Knowledge Essay

Submitted By l2sandos
Words: 574
Pages: 3

The theory of knowledge, or Epistemology, is an important area in philosophy. Many great philosophical debates have developed because of the different views and principle issues dealing with epistemology. Although there are several principle issues in epistemology, my areas of focus are, empiricism, rationalism, Skepticism, and Justification.

Empiricism is the theory that experience is the main focus in giving us knowledge of the world. Empiricists believe that knowledge without personal experience is impossible. Some empiricist believe that a new born baby come into the world knowing nothing and everything that they learn is only by experience. The mind is furnished with information from experience. The concept that all knowledge is arrived from the senses, leads me to believe that empiricist think that it is unreasonable to talk about things we have not experienced. Most radical empiricists believe that religions have no concrete evidence and consequently religious beliefs are insignificant. In essence, empiricism requires solid physical evidence to be considered knowledge.

In contrast to empiricism, rationalism is the belief that reasoning is the most important aspect of acquiring knowledge. Rationalists believe that we have some instinctive knowledge. Certain things we just know with having personal experience directly disputes the theory that empiricists believe about newborn babies. Rationalists also believe that some truths can be worked out without having a real life experience such as mathematics and ethics. Another argument that rationalists make is dealing with aesthetics. It is possible to get to different results from the same artwork based on that persons experience and reasoning. It is in our thought processes not the world that cause and effect takes, according to some rationalist. It is the mind that determines if the first event causes the second event. In my opinion rationalism and empiricism are a necessity to each other, but there are others that believe that neither one is acceptable. Skepticism doubts the fact that we can obtain knowledge. Skeptics believe that true knowledge is uncertain. The Great philosopher Descartes was known for his skepticism. He argued that our senses have let us down before so therefore they…