The internet paradox

12 06 2013

Over the last couple of days I’ve been actively engaged in battle against the firewall.  It’s amazing how much longer it takes to fix something when you can’t Google the problem because the problem is that you can’t Google things.  Meanwhile, during that time, I’d stopped answering the phone, because I got tired of explaining to people what they thought they needed to know but couldn’t understand.  Which got me thinking:  It’s amazing how we, as humans, desire to know things we don’t understand.

Of course, as my Christian readers should already understand, this has been a fundamental issue from the beginning.  As our societies and cultures strive harder and harder to know things, I believe that we start to understand less and less.  Our approach is flawed with the idea the knowledge leads to understanding.  When, in fact, They have little to do with each-other.  But I could be wrong… I don’t know.  So lets take a look at some definitions:

knowl·edge
a (1) : the fact or condition of knowing something with familiarity gained through experience or association (2) :acquaintance with or understanding of a science, art, or technique
b (1) : the fact or condition of being aware of something (2) :the range of one’s information or understanding

un·der·stand·ing
noun \ˌən-dər-ˈstan-diŋ\
1. a mental grasp : comprehension
2 a. the power of comprehending; especially : the capacity to apprehend general relations of particulars  b. the power to make experience intelligible by applying concepts and categories

Source: http://www.merriam-webster.com

Ok, so they’re very similar, so lets see if I can find a better way to describe this. So basically, I’m defining my terminology in this post differently from Websters:

Your friend has an apple.  You see the apple, they tell you all about the apple.  They show you the apple, show pictures of other apples, explain the texture of the apple.  But until you have the apple in your hand and have tasted it yourself, you can only know about the apple.  Scientists (ok… this is only allegorical) fully devote their lives to the study of the apple,  where it comes from, what it’s made out of, they can do studies on other people who have apples vs. those who have not.  But even they can not truly understand the apple until they have had one for themselves.

I’m not fully sure how I wan’t to apply this thought yet.  It could really go in all sorts of directions.  I could even continue my apple illustration to bring up other points, but I think I’ll leave other parts of that to apply elsewhere. I’ll let your mind wander in whichever direction you want to take it;  Because the longer I think my thoughts, the more confusing they get.  Especially while thinking about thinking.  Maybe I’ll write a Part II later.

 

Kyle

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