page contents


0. Preface: The Goal Of Knowledge Part 2

0. Preface: The Goal Of Knowledge
Part 2 Individual Truth

Compare Inner Truth with Outer Truth

 "Truth will be sought in our age only in the depths of human nature. Of the two well-known paths, seeking truth in outer life and seeking truth within, it is the second that will today be found most useful." TPOF 0.1

We both seek truth; you in outer life,
I in the heart within. Each of us are sure to find it.
The healthy eye can track the Creator in the outer world;
The healthy heart reflects the world within.

Seek Truth In Outer Life
Seek truth in outer life. The eye can find truth in the outer world.


Seek Truth Within
In our age truth is sought in the depths of human nature. Truth is found by reflecting the world within. This is the path most useful today.

STEP #13 (0.1)
Compare Uncertainty Of Outer Truth with Conviction Of Inner Truth

Uncertainty Of Outer Truth
Truth that comes to us from the outside always brings with it uncertainty.


Conviction Of Inner Truth
Each one of us is only convinced of truth when he recognizes it within his own heart.

STEP #14 (0.2)
Compare Outer Truth Weakens with Inner Truth Empowers

Outer Truth Weakens
Outer Truth: Outer truth weakens our powers by tormenting us with doubt. If baffled by a world full of riddles, no goal can be found for our creative activity.

Inner Truth Empowers
Inner Truth: Only inner truth can give us confidence in developing our individual powers.

STEP #15 (0.3)
Compare Outer Truth Believes with Inner Truth Knows

Outer Truth Believes
Outer Truth: The acceptance of outer truth demands belief in what we do not wholly understand.

Inner Truth Knows
Inner Truth: Belief is not enough, we want to know. The only knowing that satisfies us is the kind that submits to no external norm, but springs from the inner life of the personality.

STEP #16 (0.4)
Compare Academic Knowledge with Self-Directed Learning

Academic Knowledge
Outer Truth: Academic knowledge is encased in rigid academic rules, and stored away as outer truth to be valid for all time.

Self-Directed Learning
Inner Truth: Inner truth starts from the facts we know, from our own direct experience, and from there advances to knowledge of the whole universe. We strive for certainty in knowledge, but each in his own way.

STEP #17 (0.5)
Compare Compelled To Understand with Need To Understand

Compelled To Understand
Outer Truth: The teachings of science are presented in a way that implies its acceptance is compulsory. The student is compelled to understand. Outer truth is crammed into the student.

Need To Understand
Inner Truth: We expect neither recognition nor agreement from anyone who is not driven to a certain view by his own particular, individual needs. The student’s capacity for inner truth is developed so he wants to understand.

STEP #18 (0.6)
Compare Trends Are Central with Truth Is Central

Trends Are Central
Outer Truth: A stereotypical attitude, lacking all individuality, is prevalent everywhere. Many flaunt a way of life that follows only the current cultural trends.

Truth Is Central
Inner Truth: Many strive to conduct their lives in the direction of the principles of inner truth. It is a path taken by those for whom truth is central.
STEP #19 (0.7)
Compare Preparation For Outer Truth with Preparation For Inner Truth

Preparation For Outer Truth
Outer Truth: The outer world offers the pleasures of the senses. The oriental sage requires his disciples to live a life of resignation and asceticism for years before he shares with them his knowledge. He demands pious exercises and ascetic practices before attaining knowledge.

Preparation For Inner Truth
Inner Truth: The inner world offers the sweetest joys of life by soaring into the realm of concepts. To attain the inner truth necessary in science requires a sincere willingness to prepare by withdrawing oneself awhile from the immediate impressions of life, and entering the realm of pure thought.
STEP #20 (0.8)
Compare Separate Sciences with Wholistic Science

Separate Sciences
Outer Truth: The aim of the scientific specialist's research is to gain knowledge of the outer world and how it works. But life itself is a unity, and the more the sciences immerse themselves in separate fields, the more they move away from seeing the world as a living whole.

Wholistic Science
Inner Truth: The world is a living whole. A wholistic knowing seeks in the separate sciences the principles for leading man back to the fullness of life. By inner reflection the principles discovered in the various branches of science are integrated into a wholistic science.
STEP #21 (0.9)
Compare Questions Of Outer Truth with Questions Of Inner Truth

Questions Of Outer Truth
Outer Truth: Important questions of outer truth, Are we alone in the universe? How do we get more energy from the sun? Can computers keep getting faster?

Questions Of Inner Truth
Inner Truth: The most intimate question of inner truth that concerns humanity is freedom. What is freedom? Do we, or can we participate in it? Is a science of human freedom possible?
STEP #22 (0.10)
Compare Science Of Idle Curiosity with Science Of Value

Science Of Idle Curiosity
Outer Truth: All science would be nothing but the satisfaction of idle curiosity, if it does not elevate the existential value of human personality.

Science Of Value
Inner Truth: The true value of the sciences is seen only when we are shown the importance of their results for humanity. Knowledge has value only by contributing to the all-around development of the whole of human nature.

STEP #23 (0.11)
Compare Serving Ideas with Using Ideas

Serving Ideas
Outer Truth: Some regard the relationship of science to outer life in such a way that the human being must bow down before the world of ideas and devote his powers to its service.

Using Ideas
Inner Truth: By taking possession of the world of ideas they can be used for our human aims. These extend beyond those of mere science.
STEP #24 (0.12)
Compare Controlled By Ideas with Master Of Ideas

Controlled By Ideas
Outer Truth: If we are aware only of the outer world, we may be controlled by ideas implanted within us that compel our action.

Master Of Ideas
Inner Truth: To avoid falling into the bondage of an idea, one must confront it within and experience it.

Next Chapter Conscious Human Action
Do we confront our ideas as master or do unconscious ideas control us by compelling our behavior? This leads us into the next chapter entitled, Conscious Human Action, where we compare free action with the necessity of compelled action.

Email me when people comment –

You need to be a member of The Philosophy Of Freedom to add comments!

Join The Philosophy Of Freedom

© Tom Last 2017