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Rationalism Vs Empiricism Essay

  • Submitted by: baseballzfinest8
  • on December 5, 2011
  • Category: Psychology
  • Length: 1,155 words

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Below is an essay on "Rationalism Vs Empiricism" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

The great debate on rationalism versus Empiricism, whether to believe in a priori or a
Posteriori knowledge has many of great arguments from both the rationalists and the empiricists.  
Are you just a, Tabula Rasa, blank slate or is all knowledge formed by Reason? As this debate
grabs your mind and twists it to the reality it may already belong in. How can we know anything
of itself, are our minds just wandering in an alternate reality? A quote by Albert Einstein “Reality
is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.” one of the most influential people discussing
limitations on the rational mind.   The argument between empiricism and rationalism seems to be
a back and forth battle between a bunch of old guys arguing about which came first the chicken
or the egg. Although when they were brought together is when it seems to make the most sense.

            For rationalism we have the belief that reason is the primary source of all knowledge,
only reason itself can give meaning to experience and separate reality from illusion. To
understand truth we must be completely sure of it, this requires a rational method of inquiry
based on doubt. Methodical doubt involved deliberately doubting everything possible in the
least degree whatever remains will be known with absolute certainty.   For empiricism we have

the belief that all knowledge is of the senses. We are a tabula rasa, a blank slate, that all ideas
start with sensation and reflection, we can only think about something after we have experienced
them.   Although both the empiricists and rationalist both came to the same problem how could
we ever know anything outside of our own perceptions.

The rationalists believed in a priori knowledge, knowledge that is innate that you come
into this world with. It is gives you the ability to use rational thought and reason to gain wisdom.
For the empiricists believe in a posteriori, knowledge that is gained through the uses of...

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