widom to knowledge to information creates incomplete beings

Topics: Knowledge, Sociology, Critical thinking Pages: 2 (390 words) Published: October 12, 2014
“We’ve moved from wisdom to knowledge, and now we’re moving from knowledge to information, and that information is so partial – that we’re creating incomplete human beings.” This quote from Vandana Shiva focuses on the epistemological pyramid which separates knowledge into different organizational functions. Of the three mentioned above (wisdom, knowledge, and information), information is the most basic interpretation of data and does not require critical thinking from which ideas and theories can develop from. Wisdom on the other hand, is at the very top of the model and is defined as a timeless and adaptive skill derived from personal experience and pre-existing knowledge. Shiva’s quote suggests that we as a general society have degraded from wisdom, the ability to make thoughtful decisions, to merely understanding subjects without acquiring existential knowledge. Wisdom is not a form of understanding of a particular subject or area of knowledge, but rather an individual-oriented skill which does not change with time, while knowledge is dynamic and refines with new information. In the sense that wisdom is timeless and obtained through experience, it is similar to indigenous knowledge which is acquired through the built-up of generations of experiential knowledge. Knowledge is much more closely related to western sciences, where knowledge changes and develops with time. As indigenous communities fade and their values become less prominent in modern society, we become content with surface knowledge. However the modern society did not stop with just the disintegration of wisdom, but knowledge as well as we move down to accept just information; Shiva argues that the information we have become so comfortable with is so partial and shallow that the members of society have become “incomplete”. Unlike wisdom and even knowledge, information does not stimulate critical thinking and results in a life devoid of introspective observations, much like the unconsidered life...
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