Knowledge vs Belief

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by Magical Realist, Feb 6, 2024.

  1. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

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    I've wrestled in the past with whether there is any sub-definition of "fact" to be dug up that gets rid of its mediator status as a representation, information or datum about a non-cognitive or objective thing/event. Directly connects it to "out there", IOW.

    For instance -- the Moon, sun, and stars were observed as existing thousands of years ago. But since then have undergone radical revisions in terms of what they were variously conceived as, composed of, their origins and behavior, etc (along with the Earth itself).

    So some (if not all) of our mental representations or converted to written/vocalized descriptions can acquire a widely-agreed upon fact status, and yet still be faulty or incomplete with respect to how such phenomena are apprehended.

    We are and have been theory-laden in terms of interpretation, not just in the context of today's more advanced and sophisticated expertise, but especially the ideas of folk-cultures of old that regulate how we think, contemplate, explain, and understand things/events.

    Much can be attributed to incrementally improving our original levels of ignorance over time, but we also get locked into certain patterns, orientations, dogmas and ideologies simply because they've demonstrated being practical or successful in satisfying our needs (which includes even curiosity).

    A hermeneutical "apparatus" of guiding principles and "canonical facts" that has yielded positive results for humans can certainly correlate to or intersect with a mind-independent or non-represented manner of existence (perhaps often). But the former is not entailed in the latter -- or, put another way, _A_ is not obligated to absolutely parallel slash conform to _B_.

    However, recognizing theory-ladenness, in a broader sense than just philosophy of science, has its hazards. Postmodernism and now more currently decolonization of knowledge exploit it in the course of the general anti-Western movement. Such being the world finally shrugging off what's perceived as the centuries-long cultural oppression by the West. (Setting aside the issue of whether the West was the actual source of items like critical thinking, science, progressive technology, etc. Which it certainly did not create or introduce from scratch, but instead put together packages of ideas, inventions, and motivations from elsewhere that were uniquely coordinated in novel and effective ways.)
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    Last edited: Feb 9, 2024
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Statements can be true, but that doesn't imply that all truths are statements.
     
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