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Aeon
9 mins | May 13, 2020

The tree of knowledge is not an apple or an oak but a banyan

What if we learned to see knowledge as a tree with multiple roots, all-sustaining the same structure? Jonardon Ganeri argues in Aeon magazine that Western philosophy should look East to the Banyan tree as a symbol of wisdom. "Knowledge should indeed be thought of as a tree — just not this kind of tree. Rather than the European fruiter with its single trunk, knowledge should be pictured as a banyan tree, in which a multiplicity of aerial roots sustains a centreless organic system. The tree of knowledge has a plurality of roots, and structures of knowledge are multiply grounded in the earth: the body of knowledge is a single organic whole, no part of which is more or less dispensable than any other."

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