May 26, 2021
Prompt 17 – Why do we seek knowledge
Object 1: Math integration video uploaded by “우프과외방송”1
This video was searched up to find what’s the integration of ! after learning integration. However, due to lack of knowledge I couldn’t understand the answer and had to look for another video. This is when I thought it would be interesting to see the object in TOK perspective since the reason behind searching video and the process of gaining knowledge seems to be related to the question “why do we seek knowledge?”.
This video enriches the exhibition since the reason behind watching video was due to the curiosity which was generated from my knew knowledge. As mentioned above, this video was searched right after gaining knowledge ‘how to solve integration’ which means if I didn’t gain knowledge, I wouldn’t have been looking for this video. This was interesting to see because we sometimes think we seek knowledge because we’re ignorant when it’s because we are knowledgable. This highlights that questions arise from our knowledge and even though the question is answered, the knowledge that we gained generates another question. Because we think constantly, this process won’t stop and therefore will always try to seek knowledge to find an answer.
This video is also interesting for this exhibition by showing basic knowledge is required to absorb more complex knowledge. While I was watching this video, I couldn’t understand how ! integrates to tan . So, although the video gave me the answer, complex knowledge, I couldn’t absorb the knowledge because I didn’t know the reason, basic knowledge, behind it. As a result, the video led me to look for another video that explains the process. This shows that to gain complex knowledge understanding the basic knowledge is crucial. This idea can be enlarged to our life. Humans tend to want to know complex knowledge such as ‘what is life’ and study to gain knowledge so that they could answer to this question. ‘Seeking knowledge to understand the world’ this is what the first object is showing to us.
Object 2: Flute
This flute was given to me as a birthday gift. I’ve never asked my parents that I want it however they gave it to me since it was their will for me to play flute and thought it would be helpful for me in the future. Although I didn’t enjoy playing flute that much, the fact that I am still learning brought a question ‘why am I still learning this?’.
This object was chosen for the exhibition since it would be interesting to see reason behind seeking knowledge although I didn’t enjoy learning it. My parents’ wish for me to learn flute, their expectation towards me and the idea that I should be a good daughter started to pressure me and because I wanted to get out of from this pressure, I decided to learn flute. This highlights that we sometimes seek knowledge not because we want to but being pressured by someone else. If we look our world, there are so many situations when people are being forced and pressured to learn knowledge because of the expectations from their parents and friends. Therefore, this object points out negative reason why we seek knowledge.
The object also enriches the exhibition by highlighting the importance of knowledge in modern days, therefore shows knowledge is acting as a survival means in our society. As mentioned, my parents wanted me to play flute since they thought it will be helpful for the university application. Although I didn’t enjoy playing flute, I am still learning it because musical knowledge, learning how to play instrument, is something that not many people can have and therefore will make my university application more unique than others. Considering that my parents stopped me learning piano simply because it’s too common, the object highlights that unique knowledge is seek by people since it increases their chance of survival in our society.
Object 3: My sketchbook
The third object that I chose is my sketchbook. The sketchbook was bought to enlarge my art knowledge since I’m interested in art and has all of my drawings which enables to see my art knowledge immediately.
This object was chosen as my third object since the reason behind seeking knowledge was contrary to the second object. This object is particularly interesting for the exhibition since it shows the enjoyment from doing what we like can also be a reason for seeking knowledge. Although learning art doesn’t help me in university application at all, I still seek knowledge in art simply because I love to do so. The feeling that I’m creating something new attracted me and made me love art. The time doing art is one of the most precious time for me and I could readily dedicate my time. This highlights that liking something naturally leads people to seek knowledge. Although I’m busy with IB, I constantly seek knowledge in art. This is a great evidence that liking something is a strong reason why people seek knowledge.
The object also enriches the exhibition by dealing with ‘motivation’ which is another reason for seeking knowledge. The object enables me to see my improvement briefly and this motivates me to do art. If I look at the beginning and the end of the sketchbook, although it’s a small improvement, I can see that I got better at drawing lines, human body and wrinkles of the clothes. Looking at these improvements gives me an expectation that my knowledge and skill will improve a lot more in the future. This highlights that positive emotions that we feel by gaining knowledge is another factor why we seek knowledge. Since gaining knowledge requires a lots of effort, emotions that we feel through gaining knowledge is so big that it motivates us to seek more knowledge.
1. 우프과외방송. 2018. “[고등 수학 적분] 삼각 함수 적분.” YouTube video, 10:15. Posted August 11, 2018. Accessed 5 May, 2021. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyVw-uYm-GU&t=443s