Collected Data Is Not Knowledge

Have you considered that there are multitudes of people who have spent decades of their lives collecting piles of observations. This data is stored in their brains, stuffed into filing cabinets, loaded onto hard drives and disks, piled in boxes, placed onto shelves, piled on table tops, hidden behind closet doors, and found toppling out of the corners of offices and storage rooms. All of this comes from individual observations and are collections of organized teams who track others to learn from their experiences.

This alone cannot be classified as either information or knowledge.

Consider others who have attended the universities of the world. They have attended lectures of noted academics who speak great and swelling words about all the data they have collected. They discuss with great dexterity their interpretation of it all. Those who are students then matriculate. Some do so maybe with great honors and advanced degrees. They go on to write a multitude of articles and books on various matters. The may travel and lecture and receive the praise of many distinguished personages, forums, and agencies.

All of this does not yet establish that they have attained to either information or knowledge.

It is not amazing that with all of this they suffer awful depression as they enter old age and realize that they have never risen above the status of the silly and the fool. They realize that they do not even yet know what is the source of knowledge. They do not perceive the purpose of knowledge. They do not even know how to use knowledge. What they thought was good was shown to them that in eternity to be the source of great evil.

Empty Information

Is this not the epitome of great emptiness? Is it not vanity? Does this not help explain why as many college level students observe and perceive emptiness of life and purpose? Is this not cause for many students contemplate suicide? Collegiate years and old age are the periods in life in which people do contemplate taking their lives. The young because they see no usefulness or value to life. The aged because they recognize that they have labored for empty reasons and they despair. The Bible is very clear about the reasons for making man and reasons for his service which are rewarded. But without knowledge, all is vanity.

Knowledge and information presume a moral base, according to Webster’s early dictionary. This is not an amoral matter as some might be want to think. Knowledge is irrevocably founded upon an individual’s acknowledgment of and fear of God, the Creator of All. It is the moral relationship of information and knowledge and the God which makes it all possible for one to perceive purpose and the usefulness of knowledge. One cannot organize the data of observation and experiences without knowing its purpose or moral significance. Its relationship to the Creator God and His created universe is primary to understanding.