Knowing What You Know

A Short Hierarchy Of Knowledge

(definition: hierarchy – ordered priority, one above another; seniority)

You are probably familiar with an elementary evolution of knowledge, usually attributed to Jalaludin Rumi (Persian, 13th Century, Sufi mystic and poet), which progresses as follows:

  1. Knowing and knowing that you know
  2. Knowing and not knowing that you know
  3. Not knowing but knowing that you don’t know
  4. Not knowing and not knowing that you don’t know

rumi the poet and sufiJalaludin Rumi

Level 4, of course, is a dangerous degree of ignorance. It could get you into trouble, whereas level 3 might not. When a person knows what they don’t know, at least they can take steps to remedy the deficit. But generals in battle, who think they know when they don’t, can get a lot of soldiers killed unnecessarily.

Thanks to the current education system, which teaches meaningless “realities” that cover up ignorance of actuality and life, most people complete their schooling at level 4, rather than level 1, which is where they should be.

In fact this simple hierarchy can be expanded considerably, to become an almost infinite series of gradations that could be considered a true Hierarchy Of Knowledge and this scale is the key to a great deal of effective and powerful knowledge.

I have a whole-hour talk on this theme in my “New Thought Horizons”, entitled “PowerLogic”. Here I have simplified it down and am sharing a few notes.

Let’s take a look… Continue reading