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Was religion ever meant to give absolute truth?

  1. Jan 27, 2005 #1
    I have thought and thought about this over and over, and time and again, I come to the conclusion that there cannot be any 'absolute truths', about anything, as after all, each persons reality is different. Just as time is relevant to the observer etc. I believe so too is reality and therefore there is no Universal truth that can apply to us all, we do what we can/must do, the truth and how it applies to reality differs in our own experience.
     
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  3. Jan 27, 2005 #2

    selfAdjoint

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    I really have to agree with you. Even the bruited Theory of Everything in science, if they ever find it, won't be an absolute truth, since like any scientific theory it is always subject to later falsification by new evidence.
     
  4. Jan 28, 2005 #3
    But we all know absolute truths. 'Something exists' is an absolute truth. 'I am in pain' also, as long as you are. (Actually one could quibble about the words here, but the principle holds). Most philosophers conclude that absolute truth (certain knowledge) is attainable, but only via direct experience.
     
  5. Jan 28, 2005 #4
    Yes that is true, but my point, is that these absolute truths, are not universal. In other words, what is a certainty for you, is not a certainty for me. You talk about pain, but that cannot be an absolute, yes you do feel hurt, however, the effect of the pain differs from person to person, so what is absolute agony to one person, may not bother another person as much.
     
  6. Jan 28, 2005 #5
    I have to disagree on this one. Yes, you are correct that pain is a subjective experience, but not all truths can be subjective. Take a look at a self evident truth: "I exist." That is an absolute truth that MUST be universal, because if I did not exist, I would not be able to be typing this post right now.

    Another example is the Law of Non-contradiction. For those who don't know, this law states that the same thing cannot be two different things at the same time. For example, the green sweater I am wearing right now is not a blue sweater. This law is universal to everybody, cannot be changed, because we all know that a triangle cannot be a circle, blue cannot be green, etc.

    And so, I will make this statement:
    Truth is subjective. Is that true?
     
  7. Jan 28, 2005 #6

    selfAdjoint

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    I exist is true for me. You and your post may be a figment of my imagination, and I may with this typing, be like Don Quixote, tilting at giants of my own mind.
     
  8. Jan 29, 2005 #7
    I see what you mean. It seems that we can know truths but that we cannot show we know them to anyone else, (as mystics have always asserted).
     
  9. Jan 29, 2005 #8
    Einstein's theories of relativity suggest that some things are relative and some things are absolute. eg. Motion is relative but accelloration is absolute. The theories dont support that "everything is relative", just the passage of time. There is a reality out there, Einstein simply showed that it was 4D not 3D. We don't experience this directly, but it is real. Quantum mechanics is the theory that really challenges realism.

    I find that to deny objective reality leads to ontological doubt, which is a fruitless belief when it comes to controlling my experience, in stark contrast to education.

    If there is no reality out there, I wouldn't study science to understand the universe, I need to spend the time meditating. Because why does my mind generate such an unpleasant universe for me to live in?
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2005
  10. Jan 29, 2005 #9
    True. true... lol. But that is the beauty of it. Even though we all don't see the same things the same way, we can get an overall agreement. That is the closest we can come to truth.
    As I see it, if the divine creator (God) wanted to see us ecxell as a race, God would want to see us form societies, live peacefully, and advance. Now how would we do that if we where all telling each other lies. If we lied like crazy all logic would become watery, and knowledge would be left up to imagination.
    So when religious text says not to lie, it has Good reason behind it.

    _______________________________
    In seeking wisdom thou art wise; in imagining that thou hast attained it - thou art a fool.
    Lord Chesterfield
     
  11. Jan 29, 2005 #10
    "If the most abstract imagination can not prove a theory wrong, then in consequence, it must be correct."
    That does have to do with the conversation, just in an abstract fashion.
    _________________________________________
    In seeking wisdom thou art wise; in imagining that thou hast attained it - thou art a fool.
    Lord Chesterfield
     
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