Skip to content

Why we pursue knowledge

Why we pursue knowledge:: “An article in last month’s American Scientist offered an interesting theory of why some people are driven to find knowledge – because of the kick of natural opioids in the brain.”
While the article itself is subscription-based, the concept of natural rewards makes sense…but it’s only part of the overall reason why we pursue knowledge. There is a “feel good” dimension to acquiring knowledge or understanding something new. But our motivations at times fall outside of the intrinsic reward (pursuing external targets (goals), attempting to earn more money, wanting to make a better world, etc.). The article may get into that dimension…but the .pdfs provided don’t cover it. The “natural kick” of knowledge is a nice-to-have feature, but I think we are often more goal-based than this theory would suggest (namely that we pursue knowledge because it gives us good feelings…many of my learning activities have given me much pain and suffering :) ).