To Know or Not To Know

Knowledge is a powerful thing. I can turn worlds into war, it can turn people to power, and it can turn children to critics, humans into inhabitants. Its one of the most abused tools within the human chronicles. Its one of the most underestimated weapons in our armoury. Knowledge is beyond all reasoning, it is reasoning itself but the scale of what knowledge can hold, what knowledge can comprehend, what knowledge can understand is incomprehendable to me. To you.

Know two people are the same (see what I did there?) in terms of looks, experience and especially knowledge. It can hold the key to so many doors, but sometimes the wrong key, sometimes your knowledge I not quite good enough. Sometimes you are put in front of a door you cannot open, a river you cannot cross. Don't ever think 'I don't know' but instead think 'I don't know...yet'. Make it your quest to learn to pick locks, to swim. I feel people don't understand enough, I feel people should learn more. I know school is boring, college rubbish, uni hard work but you're learning, and that’s a good thing. Learn something, anything every day. Today I learnt to listen more, to pay more attention. People can get knowledge and logic confused. Knowledge is knowing things, its facts; its cold hard stone set facts. Nothing can change knowledge. From knowledge and experience comes logic. Lost your key?  Knowledge tells you the window is open, experience tells you its safe to do it.  Logic tells you to climb through the window.

Logic is a somewhat deeper darker space then knowledge. Knowledge you're safe with. Logic is guesses. Logic is common sense. Logic is too deep to touch on whilst where are skimming across my tour of knowledge, but the plane might stop there another time. Knowledge can tell you when something is right. My knowledge is different to your knowledge. Stephen Hawking might be one of the most intelligent people alive, but I bet you know things he doesn't. Of course he knows things you don't, that’s knowledge, but you knowing something he doesn't? Don't believe me? He doesn't know your pin number...

Our knowledge might conflict. Arguments. I know I’ve met him, you just can't remember. Memory is another area that is yet to be explorer. The mind is a wondrous thing, too complex to understand in one sitting, I know that. I know it from my knowledge. Have your fill of this course and come back for the next when you are ready, when I have prepared it, garnished it, heated it up.

What else can knowledge tell us? Knowledge is:

"Theoretical and/or practical understanding of matters worth knowing; the sum of what is known."

Knowledge can tell us a lot of things, but only if you know it of course. According to that definition above, its only understanding matters that are worth knowing. But I know things that are not worth knowing, does that make them not knowledgeable? I suppose you would never know, because the moment you need to know them, for example, thinking of something you know that is not worth knowing, then they become worth knowing, thus becoming knowledge. Something I can't quite fathom. Strange. Its the whole 'I the tree falls and no-one around to hear it, does it make any noise?' situation. The only problem is that it’s not at all. Because I know the answer to that. Sound doesn't exist; it’s just a change in air pressure. If no ear-drum or microphone is around to translate those air pressure fluctuations into sound, then no sound existed, well it existed, but to no-one. And if something exists to no one, did it exist at all? I knew that answer because of my knowledge. I knew that. I knew it.

Knowledge should always be handled with care. It should be expanded with happiness, but always with a watchful eye. You wouldn't want to know something bad. Something terrible. You should take pride in your knowledge. You should nurture it when you can, help grow it. Read that advert, that paper, ask that burning question.

"He who asks is a fool for five minutes, but he who does not ask remains a fool forever."

So there we have. Knowledge is power.

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Mike Street

Written by Mike Street

Mike is a CTO and Lead Developer from Brighton, UK. He spends his time writing, cycling and coding. You can find Mike on Mastodon.