Why Is Knowledge "Good?"

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Many people believe knowledge is neutral. Its goodness or badness is determined by the way it is used. The "neutral" view of knowledge, however, does not emphasize the important fact that the more we know the more likely we are to act and do good. In other words, knowledge can be used for both good and evil; however, if we employ the tools of statistics or probability we will easily show that knowledge is overwhelmingly "good".

Knowledge is able to make us less happy. A sated dog taking a nap may be happier than a sated human aware of the shortness of life. You can argue that a return to nature would make humans most happy. Return to nature would expose humans to deadly diseases and vagaries of nature, but we might remains blissfully unaware of the dangers, enjoy the beauty of the natural world, and experience more joy until death or disease struck. However, humans will also naturally tend to look for remedies against disease, for better tools, for better hunting methods, etc. It seems that the mankind leaves a little choice but to make the best use of knowledge to maximize pleasure and minimize pain, while adapting to the unavoidable arch to progress. Today, illiteracy and poverty are strongly correlated with unhappiness. Unless the present trends of development are reverted, knowledge will play an increasingly important role in making us happy. Very few people will intentionally want to dumb themselves down for the sake of a blind bliss. Many will pursue happiness without a major effort to improve their intellectual strengths. However, a majority of people will seek a classy and lasting state of happiness. The happiest person today is the one that is able to transcend lower level needs and find happiness in self-actualization, and contributing to the happiness of others. Statistically, knowledge should help a people achieve happiness.

Mythology, religion, and science come all from the same source: humans looking for answers. When Aristotle groped in...
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