Student Question

Is there solid justification for regarding knowledge in the natural sciences more highly than another area of knowledge?

Expert Answers

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We could actually argue the question of regard for knowledge of the natural sciences from both sides, that it should be more highly regarded and that it should not be, so let's take a look at both sides of the issue so you can make up your own mind.

If we were to argue that knowledge of the natural sciences should be regarded more highly than other areas of knowledge, then we would probably point to the help that natural science gives us in both understanding the world we live in and improving our lives in that world. We could talk about medical advancements and technology and how the natural sciences have contributed to a higher standard of living for many people.

If, however, we were to look at the other side of the question and argue that the natural sciences are not more important than other areas of knowledge, we could talk about how the arts and humanities enrich human life in ways that natural science does not. These other areas tell us who we are as human beings and how we are to live in relationship with each other. They show us truth, beauty, and goodness, and they stretch our minds to think behind the visible world in which we live and to reach out for what is eternal. As such, we could argue that these other areas of knowledge are just as important as the natural sciences and perhaps even more so because they show us what it means to be fully human.

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