- Religion and Philosophy»
- Atheism & Agnosticism
The Truth of it All...
How true is truth?
Sounds dumb right? I was recently asked if absolute truth exists by a certain creationist. I answered no, and his response was "are you absolutely sure". I know at this moment he thought GOTCHA!!!, right up until I answered "nope". He then wanted out of that topic and we moved on to something else. I imagine he had to consult with his partner in crime on the proper way to respond to that answer; which is fine. On to the main point, does absolute truth exist?
Maybe the only absolute truth; fruit cake sucks!
First I want to distinguish between the truth and absolute truth. Absolute truth requires a statement or an idea etc. to be true regardless of time, location, point of view and so on. No matter where, when or what you are its true. Anything that doesn't meet this rigid requirement is simply the truth depending on your point of view. Here is a very overly simple example. My living room is painted blue. Its true, if you ever stopped by you would see blue walls and ask what was I thinking! Of course if you don't know what "blue" is, its not blue. If you know "blue" but call it something else, its not blue. If you are color blind or perhaps somewhere out there is a being that perceives color differently, its not blue. You get the point. To me, the truth is the living room is painted blue. However, that truth does not transcend to everyone, everywhere at all times. A second example, China is east of the United States. True, but maybe if you lived California you would consider west a better option than people living in New York. This begs the question, how can you be absolutely sure there is no absolute truth?
You're About to Become Dizzy
It is not absolutely true that there is no absolute truth. Its quite a paradox. In order for absolute truth to exist, one must have absolute knowledge. Our scientific laws while sound are still limited to our knowledge. We know nothing of what is outside the universe, or if they exists, universes outside of ours. However, I don't know that is absolutely true, see above. Because I lack absolute knowledge, I don't know with absolute certainty that there is no absolute truth. Ive read that last bit about 20 times, I can't do any better than that.
This is where the believers love to pull the ace from their sleeve. "I know a god with absolute knowledge, so I know absolute truth." Nobody, god or otherwise, with abosolute knowledge could reveal themselves to you. You have no way of verifying the infinite knowledge that they would bring to the table. Only through blind faith could you "know" the legitimacy of their absolute knowledge. So when the faithful come to you with "absolute truth is proof of god's existence" its pure folly. As I've demonstrated absolute knowlede is required for absolute truth, so they would be using something that doesn't exist to prove something that doesn't exist. But I'm not absolutely sure.