Knowledge is true, justified belief.
- Believing in something is not the same as knowing something.
- A belief must be true in order for it to be considered genuine knowledge. Children believe Santa Claus brings presents to them at Christmas, and they act on that belief (by setting out milk and cookies), but they clearly do not know this.
- The fact a belief may happen to be true, does not mean the person really has knowledge of it.
- If a person has enough arbitrary beliefs, probably a few of them will happen to be true just by accident.
- If a person does not have a good reason for those beliefs (even the true ones), it would be inappropriate to say he or she has actual knowledge of it.
- It is possible to have knowledge of something without having a reason for it.
- This is an extremely important principle. Suppose someone said, "I just know it is going to be warm and sunny for the Christmas parade in December".
- Does this person know this? Suppose it turned out to be true? "See, I knew it would be sunny!" But did this person really know it all along? No.
- Even if this belief turned out to be true, it would be wrong to say this person had knowledge of the future.
- This person did not really know it would be sunny because they did not have justification, that is they did not a good reason for their belief.
- So... knowledge is true, justified belief.
- A rational person has reason for what he or she believes!
- "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge..." Proverbs 1:7
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