A Conversation About the Nature of Truth

May 1, 2011 § Leave a comment

David

Question: Is what you believe, been told or taught what you observe?

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D. O.

People see what they want to see.

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David

Just a thought I had after reading something about Greek philosopher Epicurus… the art of rational living. He was one of the first to see behavior from the standpoint of observance instead of just thought.

I was just wondering how people now saw things as what they are told or led to see them, or as they actually observe them and come to their own conclusions.

Truth is ultimately up to the individual, but the myriad of influences creates infinite “truths”…

For the curious… http://philosophy.lander.edu/ethics/epicurus.html

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Marsha

I was trying to tell my daughter to question everything. She didn’t get it. She’s 10. Just because someone tells you something doesn’t mean it’s true or real. I know my truth is different than most, but it’s true to me.

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Mike

Presuppositions are always part of our conclusions, but truth is true for everyone regardless of our perception of it.

Case in point, if we say truth is relative yet tell someone there is a certain way to view and handle truth, i.e. “truth is ultimately X” or “question everything”, we presuppose that truth is absolute and that it should apply to others as well as ourselves.

If a person questions everything, she must also question the idea that she should question everything. Maybe the 10 year old does get it. 🙂 The reason we question anything is because we assume there is an absolute answer somewhere.

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David

I assume no such absolute truths. Doesn’t mean that I don’t observe all possibilities.

Truth is a variable. It is what you choose to accept.

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Mike

How then can “truth is a variable” be true if others reject it? And if it isn’t assumed to be absolutely true by the presenter, then why present it?

Haven’t looked at the epicurus link yet, but I am epicurious…

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David

A variable the individual needs to pin down for themselves. The ‘others’ are the influence that is the problem.

Drivel is presented in perfectly plausible fashion every day and you can fool all of the people some of the time. Repeat something enough, build in a fear of not believing it, and develop a social network to fence them all in, an you got yourself a nice sustainable whatever. Global warming activists, ultra-conservatives, cults, the Amish, crack houses, whatever.

I prefer to stay out of that situation and choose my own vantage point.

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