Experiential knowledge

Experiential knowledge is knowledge gained through experience as opposed to a priori (before experience) knowledge. In the philosophy of mind, the phrase often refers to knowledge that can only be acquired through experience, such as, for example, the knowledge of what it is like to see colours, which could not be explained to someone born blind. See also qualia. A priori knowledge is can Adam or Eve know what water feels like on their skin prior to touching it for the first time?

The phrase also crops up in philosophy of religion, as an argument against God's omniscience - here it is questioned whether God could genuinely know everything, since he (supposedly) cannot know what it is like to sin. In that the Godhead established the existence of sin from his knowledge one must recognize that the Godhead does not have to experience sin in order to know what sin is and the effects sin has on man and the godhead.

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