“All Knowledge that the world has ever received comes from the mind; the infinite library of the universe is in our own mind.”

---Swami Vivekananda

Knowledge is the essence and substance of all experiences. It transcends the expressions of experience in terms of facts, information, descriptions or skills, which is acquired through experience or education by discovering or learning, which vary considerably from one person to other. It is very important to give Knowledge a practical definition, for Knowledge must lead to action. As an idea or an ideal, its value is very limited. As a motivating force that leads, guides, and even at times impels us and it has immense value to do certain things that transcend personal interests.

“Knowledge is experience. Everything else is just information” Albert Einstein (1879-1955).

Several characteristics of knowledge have been described:

  • Knowledge is contextual and it can be re-used
  • Benefits of knowledge are obtained only if it is applied
  • The value of knowledge may change over time
  • Knowledge has to be renewed or maintained
  • It can be difficult to transfer, capture and distribute knowledge
  • It is developed through learning processes
  • Depends on memory, past experience, expertise, knowledge transfer mechanisms, opportunities
  • Facilitates effectiveness and ‘sense-making’
  • Knowledge enables higher learning
  •  Knowledge creation and utilization is enhanced with technology.

The above definition is valuable, but to experience its value, one must consider deeply. Stretching beyond our own ideas and assumptions and reaching out for something which is greater that transcends them is an act of courage, integrity and commitment to personal development and to true contribution in life. This is the road to Knowledge. Knowledge is with you. It is in you, but you cannot reach for it and grab it, take hold of it and use it for yourself. Rather, it represents the promise within you that you have a greater identity and a greater purpose in the world. It represents the promise that there are greater relationships within the world which you can find and develop given the correct understanding and the realization of an underlying purpose in life which is yours specifically to fulfill. Here your definition of your purpose must remain undefined, for in truth it is something that will come together very slowly. You cannot simply identify it and say, “This is it. This is why I am here. This is what I will do.”

Many people do that, but that is reckless. It only reveals their impatience and their ambitions. The real discovery of Knowledge and purpose is something quite different. Never think that you fully know what Knowledge is and what it will do. To do so is to close your mind to Knowledge. Knowledge is an involvement moment to moment. It is an opening in yourself based upon a deeper need and a greater trust.

Claim Knowledge for yourself and you will lose it. Open yourself to Knowledge and it will return to you.

The evidence of Knowledge can be found if you look for it. Amongst all the other manifestations of life, you will find the evidence of Knowledge if you seek for it. Knowledge does not display itself; it does not make a show, yet it is always there. You can find it if you look, but you must look, and you must look with open eyes—not with greedy eyes or self-seeking eyes, not with eyes seeking self- validation or self-glorification. Indeed, as you seek it, you will likely have to give up even your ideas and beliefs because Knowledge will be beyond them.