Theoretical and Practical Knowledge
Hawzah News Agency- The relationship between knowledge and action in the human being is such that all its actions are based on its knowledge, dictated by it, and follow its leadership. However, not all of man's knowledge directly affects his actions. In fact, some of man's knowledge has a purely speculative and theoretical aspect, having no direct or clear cut influence over his activities. Whereas other aspects of his knowledge directly affect his actions and provide the plan and framework for them.
Thus, the domain of human knowledge is wider in scope than, that of human action. In other words, knowledge is something unlimited, while action is something limited. That is why knowledge enjoys a stature completely denied to and out of reach of action. The reason for this is that some of the things known by the mind transcend the `, arena of human life, and the human being plays no role in their realization.
On the contrary, the human being owes its existence to some of these realities and is an “effect” of which they are the “cause”. Other things known to man, however, fall within the domain of his life, and their realization depends on his will and efforts, so that if man did not exist these things would also not exist.
It is, at this point that division of knowledge into “theoretical” or speculative” science and “practical”science (al-hikmah al-nazariyyah and al-hikmah al amaliyyah) is established, and the influence and limits of human knowledge in each of these areas are studied. Furthermore, it is here that the role of Divine Revelation in each of these fields can be examined.
Such analysis would clearly show to what extent man is capable of attaining knowledge of reality, and clarify the' new approaches suggested by Divine Revelation with respect to the human Sciences. We shall know then what is to be done if there arises any incongruity between human discoveries and the Revelation, what authority to consult in such cases and which of them to consider prior to the 'other.
Basically, is it possible for any difference to occur between definitive and certain human knowledge and Divine Revelation, or not? And supposing that such incongruity is possible, can it be overcome? Each one of these issues could be studied separately.
Ayatullah Jawadi Amuli, Divine Revelation, Human Reason and Science, Journal: Vol.1, N.2, Translated by Shahyar Sa'adat,Published by Ahlul Bayt World Assembly.