Limits of knowledge

My philosophy dissertation is an 8000-word essay (that’s roughly 20 pages, single-spaced) that I’ve spent 3 months working on. As I approach the tail end of my time at Cambridge University, I’ve changed my dissertation thesis conclusion at nearly every draft. I began with conclusion “X”, then I completely changed my thesis to be conclusion “not X.” Now, it looks like I’ll essentially be submitting an essay arguing for X + Y.

Knowledge is a daunting thing to seek. The more I learn, the more I become hauntingly aware of the limits to my knowledge. It goes back to my sense of imposter syndrome.

There is the process of base information – surface-level learning. This stage is very dangerous because if you accept this surface-level information every time, you easily subject yourself to influences. There is no wisdom. The genuine process of learning is challenging your initial beliefs – unlearning and then relearning – and then rechallenging the new set of beliefs. And that’s what I’ve been doing with my education here at Cambridge – pushing the limits of my knowledge.

I’ve never been more intellectually challenged in the field of philosophy as in my short time here at Cambridge. I am excited to formally organize my thoughts and submit my dissertation – a culmination of the work I’ve done the past 3 months. In this home stretch, I hope I can produce quality work that I am proud of. Because, as scary as learning can be sometimes, it’s also rewarding, enticing, and addictive.

I am so happy I went on this journey.

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