Ch. 9 Importance of truth

In chapter 9 Cesar sings in front of everyone in the house, because Roxanne was not awake, and everyone was used to the routine of her singing. He did an amazing job at immitating her voice, and was a beautiful singer. Midway through his performance Roxanne came downstairs and started listening to him sing, and he began to become more stage fright with her presence, wondering what she thought of him. When he approached a note that Roxanne knew would be almost impossible for him to hit, she went up and stopped him, saying “that’s enough”. He became overwhelmed with embarrassment, thinking that she thought he was not a good singer, and he ran out of the house. The whole chapter then seemed to revolve around him discovering the truth of how she felt about his singing abilities. What does it matter what the truth is? Why do we care so much about truth?

Some people say that truth is relative, and some say that truth is absolute. Is it possible for truth to be both relative and absolute depending on the circumstance, and what context truth is being discussed in? People see things differently, whether that be situations or literally. A color blind person may see red as green, when it is actually red. Does that mean that truth to that person is that green is red, so that means that truth is relative to the person?  Truth can be perceived differently, but that doesn’t effect what the truth really is. Truth can even be denied, or ignored, but that doesn’t change what truth is. To keep my example from before, green is still green and red is still red, whether everyone sees it that way or not, it still is. Does it make someone narrow minded to state that truth is absolute? No, it makes them intelligent. The statement of “truth is relative” immediately can be refuted the moment it is stated, because it disproves itself by making an absolute statement.

If we as a society were to truly buy in to the belief that truth was relative, then all science, history, math, etc would stop being studied and debated, because no discovery would be of significance, because it would only be truth to the one whom discovered. However, because truth is absolute, we as a society do debate things, and we do have scientific discoveries. Now the way truth is perceived seems to be something worth debating, and it is highly debated in many areas. In regards to one of the hugest debates of all time, “Is there a God”, there are tons of debates on this topic. Some people believe that God exists, and created the universe, and some people believe that no God exists and something else (maybe nothing) created the universe. Only one of these statements is true. Which is it? Can we always find the truth, or are there some things we will never really know the truth about?

What exactly is the importance of truth? We know now that truth exists. It can be perceived differently, or denied, but it most definitely exists, and is absolute. What is true is heavily debated in many areas, so what is so important about knowing the truth? Why is it reasonable for scientists and philosophers to debate over the same topics for thousands of years when neither side has proof of what the truth is? Well, let’s keep using the example I used of “Is there a God?”, since it is what I have been recently researching and blogging about. Richard Dawkins states in The God Delusion that whether or not a God exists has huge implications!

Imagine a world without religion. The Crusades never would have happened, 9/11 wouldn’t have occurred, no witch-hunts, etc. (Dawkins). It seems here that maybe religion was the cause of a lot of evil things in our history. If someone were to have been able to prove that there was no God, long before any of this happened, then maybe all of these lives would have been saved throughout history. Are the lives of millions of people really able to be affected by only one truth? Could tons of humans be saved if we could just find the truth on this one issue? Well let’s look at it from the flip side. What if we could prove that God does exist, and that God created this universe? For the sake of sparing my readers sanity, I will just discuss the view that Christians hold on this debate rather than all religions! Christians believe that there is an eternal life that is at stake, and that every single person to ever exist, past, present and future are affected by what they decide is true. If God is real, then we are required by Him to serve Him and worship Him because He created us out of love. If we refuse His love then He will allow us to choose an eternal life in a place of misery, rather than an eternal life spent with Him, enjoying the riches of a new Heaven and new Earth that He has created (Geisler and Turek). So it seems here that truth is quite important even just with this one topic of scientific, philosophical, and religious debate. The absolute truth has the power to either save millions, or affect every single human that has ever existed for eternity. What do we do when we can’t find or prove an absolute truth? Do we give up and just state that truth is relative instead? Are there some truths that we will never find while on this Earth? What are we obligated to do when we know an absolute truth that is important?

-Bryson Allen

Works Cited

  1. Dawkins, Richard. The God Delusion. https://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/jksadegh/A%20Good%20Atheist%20Secularist%20Skeptical%20Book%20Collection/The%20God%20Delusion%20by%20Richard%20Dawkins.pdf
  2. Geisler, Norman L., and Frank Turek. I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2004. Print.
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