Socrates expounded on the superiority of knowledge over true opinion. Now, I’m not giving you a 3rd year philosophy lection here, so I’ll sum up.
- you can be told something is true
- it can be true
- you can apply that truth and be correct every time, but
- it is still opinion until you’ve applied reason to it
I’ve long been of the opinion that my work life is rather sedentary, after all, I sit in front of a computer 9 hours a day. Sure, I make a consious effort to get up and move regularly, but I sill believed I was pretty sedentary.
Note the words, “opinion” and “believed.” I had an opinion of my daily activity level during the work week.
Now I have a Fitbit, which tracks active and stationary periods. Let’s go back a few days.
- Saturday; 8 hours active, 7 hours stationary
- Sunday; 8 – 1/2 hours active, 4 – 1/2 hours stationary
- Monday; 5 – 1/2 hours active, 10 – 1/2 hours stationary
- Tuesday; 4 – 1/2 hours active, 11 hours stationary
This pattern holds true right from first putting the fool thing on. When I’m home with the boys I’m a lot more active than when I’m at work.
Before, I always believed it to be true and I had anecdotes, but the plural of anecdote is not data. Now I have data. In the Socratic formulation, I have applied reason to opinion and it is now knowledge.
And I know that my work life is too sedentary. Gotta work on that.