Essay, Pages 3 (672 words)
Compare and contrast any two different ways of knowing cats.
Is it possible to give any preferential status to one particular way? Knowledge by definition is facts, feelings or experiences known by a person or a group of people1. It is awareness, consciousness, or familiarity gained by experience or learning. It is erudition learning. There are various ways of knowing. The categorized ways of knowing include emotion, reason, language and perception. Emotion is derived from the body, within the heart, which gives human beings the capacity to respond to knowledge imaginatively.
Reason and logic are derived from empirical evidence.
Language is the tool with which humans communicate knowledge. It is also a tool of thought. Lastly, perception is the knowledge or understanding gained through the uses of the five senses. Scientific inquiry lies under the category of reason and logic, whereas personal experience lies in the categories of perception and emotion. These two very different ways of knowing construct the basis of knowing cats. Scientific inquiry is a significant way of knowing cats. It is empirical, and based on evidence. The knowledge people gain from scientific inquiry is formulated and analyzed in our brains.
Through this aspect of knowledge, people have deduced the classification of domestic cats: Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Chordata, Class Mammalia, Order Carnivora, Family Felidae, Genus Felis, and Species catus. This helps people to investigate and understand the structure of the species, such as cat physiology and the systems of the mammalian body. Different aspects of cat behavior are widely understood through scientific inquiry as well.
The relationships cats have with the environment around them can be explored by the ecological part of scientific inquiry.
The nourishment necessary for a cat’s development is also a way of knowing cats, which can only be reasoned through this way of knowing. Basically, the sciences help understand cats as a species, their lives, structure, growth, function, and origin. On the other hand, personal experience, also a very significant way of knowing, has a totally different approach to knowing cats. The knowledge gained by personal experience is derived from a very creative process in a person’s body or heart rather than brain. This process is one that creates emotional attachment between the person and the cat.
Personal experience also causes an individual to perceive the cat and transform any data noticed into a knowledge claim. The people, who have the personal experience of interacting with a cat, have a direct relationship with cats. They have a stronger understanding of cats as they have actually experienced interactions with the animal. The cat’s behavior and response to its environment can be analyzed through personal experience as well. The cat’s habits and patterns such as eating and sleeping can also be explored. The shape, form and body of cat can also be perceived through personal experience.
Basically, personal experience helps give a person the strong bond with the cat, which lets the individual create its own, specific knowledge claims. Personal experience and scientific inquiry are both significant ways of understanding and knowing cats. Scientific inquiry and personal experience both help to explore the fields of anatomy, ecology, biology, and chemistry of cats. For example, a cat’s behavior and response to their surroundings can be understood through both. But while scientific enquiry is knowledge strongly based on experiments and science, personal experience is knowledge gained through true interaction with the animal.
Knowledge claims based on scientific inquiry are derived from the left-brain, as it is to do with reason and logic. Whereas claims based on personal experience are derived from the right brain, as it is to do with emotion and feelings. It’s a contrast between the minds vs. body. Personal experience also allows the person to be more specific about their knowledge claims as they can be made according to a certain cat, rather than a generalized knowledge claim based on scientific inquiry, which covers most cats. They both together offer a strong knowing of cats, thus preferential status cannot be given to any one particular way.