by Ferdinando Catalano
SAI DI NON SAPERE?
According to the Treccani dictionary, “knowing” is a word with roots in classical Latin and means “having flavor; to be wise, to understand, “to indicate the ability to have knowledge of something, to possess a notion by having learned it through study or having received it from teaching.
Many enemies of knowledge, for example, have encouraged unscientific attitudes based on religious convictions. The rivalry between science and theology has often resulted in open clashes so that erroneous religious ideas have led church theologians to deny scientific truth. Almost 360 years had to pass before the church acquitted Galileo. But it is also dangerous to believe in certain scientific “truths,” which often turn out to be real hoaxes. The spectacular advances that science has achieved should not lead us to believe uncritically that now nothing is beyond its reach.
5 ways of knowing
Today, commerce and politics often see science more than religion as a powerful tool to achieve one’s ends, whether to make economic profits or consolidate political power. Science has turned into a sort of “sacred cow,” which gave rise to “scientism,” which is nothing more than excessive confidence in the effectiveness of natural science methods applied to every investigation field.
In this context, there are many who “don’t know they don’t know.” They are those who do not even feel the discomfort of their ignorance, precisely because they do not know they are ignorant. And they don’t ask themselves the meaning of life and things because they don’t know that there is a why. A kind of Limbo of knowledge.
Others, on the other hand, are those who “know they know.” They are aware of their high knowledge, but they use it badly. After all, they no longer have stimuli, not feeling the need to search because they are convinced that there is nothing more to explore beyond Hercules’ Pillars.
Still, others “think they know.” They believe they have understood everything, proud of their certainties, and do not feel the need to deal with others’ knowledge. This way of living knowledge, coupled with a certain amount of presumption, becomes a devastating mixture. For them. Because in life, there always comes a time when someone will prove you wrong and make you look bad.
What about those who “pretend to know“? They realize the limits of their knowledge but do nothing to fill them and then spend their lives sketching. A bit like when a group of people looks at a painting by Miro. There is always one who expresses his admiration but not because he knows its meaning, but only because it is from Miro.
I am honored to belong along with many friends to the category of those who “know they do not know.” Aware of my ignorance in the face of the immensity of knowledge, I live my life in a continuous search for understanding things and never get satisfied, driven not by the obsession with knowledge, but by a pure need of the soul and much curiosity.