Knowledge involves acquaintance with truth, principles or facts as with a certain subject or a branch of learning. People have various perceptive of knowledge. There are those who belief that knowledge is found in many forms which must be proven with evidence. It is possible to doubt everything that exist because it is a misconception or it may be seen as an illusion. Doubt is important in knowledge because learning through from the senses or through the senses can be deceptive.
For example, senses can deceive because one may smell something sweet and senses deceive that it is going to have sweet taste. However, this is wrong because not everything that smells sweet taste sweet. Dreams are also deceptive as they are just false delusions because occasionally when one is asleep one is deceived by the illusions in dreams. These are just ways that knowledge through the senses can deceive. Therefore, it becomes necessary to doubt everything so that one can get the true knowledge.
So as the proverb hold doubt is key to knowledge. Knowledge creates doubt and doubt pave way for gaining more knowledge. If its is not for doubt then there would be no knowledge or the knowledge that would be available would be one that is not complete knowledge (Urdahl, pg 27-29). In natural sciences, scientists have a lot of experience with doubt and uncertainty. This is experience that is very necessary in gaining knowledge in natural sciences. When one does not know the answer to a problem then this can be termed as ignorance.
Then one has a hunch as to what the results are, for example, of an experiment, then it means that one has uncertainty. When one is darned sure of what the result would be then it means that one has some doubt. Therefore, it is paramount important that in order to have progress it is important to recognize the ignorance we have in natural sciences and leave room for doubt. This is because scientific knowledge is a body of statements, which have varying degrees of certainty. The degrees vary from being unsure, nearly sure and none absolutely certain.
Doubt is a good thing in natural science because if one knows the answer or thinks that one knows the answer then it becomes easy to fail to seek more knowledge about that particular subject. Doubt helps to come out of that emotional attachment that people have in certain beliefs or from the theory of determinism. Example of areas where doubt has assisted in gaining and verifying knowledge is in the assumptions in relativity that inertial mass and gravitational mass are equal. In order to show that they are not the model has to be revised. Scientists have engaged in refining their ability to measure the two.
It is the doubt that has developed in this area that has made the scientist revise this model until they have realized that inertial mass and gravitational mass are different at finer degrees. Therefore, they doubt has made it known that the two are not equivalent as has been held in the past. In this case, it is not that the same experiment is repeated but the real key to this is to look at the statements and test if they have been examined to the extent that they should. Doubt allow the use of new tools in scientific experiments which allow new discoveries which do away with the old ideas or theories.
Science in this case becomes a process of doubt. Natural scientists are always nor sure and this is the reason as to why they repeat the steps in experiments in order to make sure that it is right. Another area where doubt has necessitated growth of knowledge is in the evolution theory. At the beginning people had strong belief that creation theory was the one that provided call the knowledge about the evolution of human being. However, as knowledge grew people started to doubt some aspects of the evolution theory and developed other theories such as the Darwinian theory of evolution.
This is a theory which resulted out f the doubts about some of the aspects of the former theory. This is not the end theory because doubts in some aspects of the evolutions theory have also led to development of some other theories (Axtell pg 87-88). Doubt has also contributed to increased knowledge in other areas, for example, in social science and history. There are two areas that information collected or knowledge gained depends on research or theories which were constructed in the past by various scholars. However it becomes tricky to use such kind of theories to their full because history and social sciences are dynamic.
For example, the society change as time moves. Therefore, this is also in the same way that the theories are supposed to change. For example, if theories that were constructed in the fourteenth century are used in the twenty first century then there is no doubt that the theory would contain a lot of faults because of the changes that have occurred in the society. People have developed in their way of reasoning as in these days there are more sources of information than in the past. Reason is one part of gaining knowledge that enhances the development of doubt.
This is because it is after deductive reasoning that a person is able to develop hypothesis that proves some knowledge as relevant or irrelevant (Gotschl, pg179-180). Historians do their research and base most of their research on the researches that were conducted in the past. The information in the research where they base their research would be biased or exaggerated. This is what cause doubt and enhance new research to be conducted regarding some issues. Despite the fact that some people are emotionally attached to some believes doubt has made them to relent some of their believes.
For example, different ethnic groups have their own myths about where they originated or who is their god or where their god lived. In traditional society people had strong emotional attachment to these beliefs (Chang pg 581). However, as time has passed people have developed doubt about these believes to develop other believes. This is because most of the beliefs in the traditions are not well reasoned and are also biased to particular ethnic people. People have developed other believes that are more inclusive of other ethnic groups all over the world.
This has risen out of the doubt that people have some of the things that happened in the past (Lamm Norman pg 11-12). Despite that knowledge plays a key role in knowledge I think that knowledge or truth is a fixed situation because truth is not questionable. So if true knowledge is out there to be discovered or to be learned then it means that when we know or acquire knowledge then there should be no room for doubt. I also think that knowledge depends mostly on human perception. Natural sciences have more upper hands in investigating the truth. However these sciences are still subjected tout human brains.
Curiosity is also key to knowledge rather than doubt. Human beings are always curious to know more about their nature. The curiosity allows them to make discoveries and also strive to find the truth. Looking critically at the discoveries that have been made in the past it is out of curiosity that this has happened. This curiosity leads to knowledge, which then leads to wisdom. Doubts make us to know hat our knowledge is correct instead on believing in something blindly. However I do not feel that doubt makes us to make any discovery or learn anything that is new to us.
It is curiosity that allows us to acquire new knowledge more quickly. Work cited Axtell Guy. Knowledge, belief, and character: readings in virtue epistemology, 1st edition, Rowman & Littlefield, 2000. Chang Larry. Wisdom for the Soul: Five Millennia of Prescriptions for Spiritual Healing, Gnosophia Publishers, 2006. Gotschl Johann. Erwin Schrodinger’s world view: the dynamics of knowledge and reality Vol 16, New York, Springer, 1992. Lamm Norman. Faith and doubt: studies in traditional Jewish thought, 3rd edition, KTAV Publishing House, Inc. , 2007. Urdahl Halvor. Key of Knowledge, New York, Kessinger Publishing, 1998.