Is it possible to have a dialogue about "the Truth"

Discussion in 'Comparative Studies' started by Abogado del Diablo, Aug 6, 2006.

  1. flowperson

    flowperson Oannes

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,612
    Likes Received:
    0
    Mark: Sure like your taste in movies. One of my faves !

    Where I came from we called this sort of exercise "picking nits".

    flow....:p
     
  2. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Messages:
    3,915
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think we can dialogue about the Truth, and with humility we can learn a lot from each other along the way. But can we come to some kind of agreement on the Truth? I'd like to say yes, but I think not.
     
  3. taijasi

    taijasi Gnōthi seauton

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2004
    Messages:
    2,640
    Likes Received:
    6
    Perhaps it has to do with starting with some very simple affirmations ...
    I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart.
    This has got to be one of the most powerful statements ever uttered, as well as one of the most basic truths of our existence. I do not think that it could be repeated too often, and for some people (me included), usually in these exact words.

    Love and Light,

    taijasi
     
  4. Janz

    Janz What's Amatta U

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2006
    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    0
    Here is another analogy even one step further:

    Kudoes to Walter Truett Anderson:

    Three umpires are having a beer after a baseball game. One says: There's balls and there's strikes and I call 'em the way they are." Another responds, "There's balls and there's strikes and I call 'em the way I see 'em." The third says,"There's balls and there's strikes and they ain't nothin until I call em."

    So what is reality? Are there balls and stikes out there in the world as the first ump implies? The truth is out there. (Mulder and Scully, where are you?) According to J. Richard Middleton and Brain J. Walsh of the Institute of Christian Studies in Toronto, the first ump is a naive realist, believing that that human knowing is a matter of seeking direct correspondence between the external world and epistemological(what and how we know) judgements.

    The second ump knows that acess to the external world is always mediated by the perspective of the knower. A perspectival realist or critical realist since he recognizes that the way he sees the world invariably affects his
    epistemological judgements. The third ump is the postmodern shift: radical
    perspectivalism, his perspective is all that matters since how do we know, afterall, if there is anything that is "real" beyond our judgements.

    So, what does a person do? I think that more and more the American culture, is in the last stages of the 2nd ump and heading for the early to mid stages of postmodernity. My own journey reflects this cultural shift and from what I just read here on CR, here we are. Can we discuss "Truth"?
    Maybe or maybe not. First I have to understand what is being said.:rolleyes:

    We all have built our ethics/values on different foundations: faith, reason,
    instinct, feelings. We also make look at the same facts and come up with different conclusions. Just like witnesses to a traffic accident, we all have different accounts of what has happened, what is happening and what may happen.

    So what truth shall we deconstruct? ;)
     
  5. cyberpi

    cyberpi Interfaith Forums

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    1,437
    Likes Received:
    0
    Is this now the law, judge, condemn thread? Law can be a truth when it is formed with faith or agreed to.

    The 4th umpire saw the failures of the other 3 umpires in promoting Truth and a clean game so he used Faith to promote Truth and said, "Gentlemen before we start this game lets review what the club laws say on how I am to judge your game so we are in agreement. I read that it says this is the strike zone and anything outside of that is a ball. Its your game so if you two teams come to agreement on something a little different then show me how you want me to call it. Very well I promise to do my best at judging your game justly per your strike zone. I am human so I ask for your mercy if I miss a few. You both agree that my judgement will be final for your game today? Very well, play ball."

    Cyber_Luke 11:52 Woe to you Faithless umpires, because you have taken away the key to Truth: you entered not yourselves, and them that were entering in you hindered.
     
  6. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,906
    Likes Received:
    5
    (Lol) or something like that...:D
     
  7. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,906
    Likes Received:
    5
    I believe that people are truly good when they forgoe the desires of their heart.

    Look, Love isn't based on emotion, rather it is based on decision or choice. If the heart is the center of anything (besides pumping blood), it would be emotional desire. But the "will" of a person does not rest within the heart. We know for fact that removing the "heart" from a situation (literally), does not stop the will of a man. Case in point a few years back, when what, seven FBI agents were killed by a gunman who had his "heart" blown apart, yet managed to kill seven agents, and get in and drive a car for a mile before he died.

    The autopsy revealed that he had no heart left, and they could not figure out how he kept going for almost five minutes, with no oxygen going to the body or brain...

    If we were to follow our "heart's desire", how many broken relationships would we have?...just look around you for the answer. Man is not basically "good at heart". His heart has no concscience. It wants what it wants, right/wrong or indifferent. Man's will determines his goodness/badness. And the will is not an emotional thing, but rather a decision making thing.

    ..."so Q, are you implying that man should be more self disciplined and should deny ourselves that which we think we deserve?"...yeah.

    v/r

    Q
     
  8. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,906
    Likes Received:
    5
    What is Truth? Simple. Truth is your neighbor giving his word about something, and then keeping that word. That is Truth.

    v/r

    Q
     
  9. cavalier

    cavalier New Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2006
    Messages:
    720
    Likes Received:
    0
    is it?
     
  10. kenod

    kenod "to live is Christ"

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Messages:
    307
    Likes Received:
    0
    Seems I was a touch too touchy ... sorry, Mark. I still think it was a bit naughty the way the thread was started, but even that is relatively petty compared to the subject matter being discussed.

    I hope I did not give the impression that I believe I am right about everything. One of the points I was trying to present, probably very clumsily, was that each one of us should be convinced that what we are doing is right. It is hard work, and apathy or befuddlement are not good excuses when our behaviour has a direct bearing on the welfare of others - as a parent, as a school teacher (ex), as a citizen and voter, and as someone who will die one day, I believe I need to put serious effort into coming to an understanding of what I believe is right and what I believe is wrong.

    I think it is easier to talk about truth in a situational context, rather than one global Truth: rape and murder are wrong; children should be protected; etc.

    All of us use our beliefs to contribute to the suffering of others - whether by overt action or by neglect. Should people in Africa be dying of starvation - of course everyone thinks that is wrong (I hope) - and yet what we do, or don’t do, on a personal level, proves what we really believe about it.

    Yet I do believe there is one absolute and universal truth … but that does not mean that any one person knows all of it. The randomness of some aspects of nature (quantum physics was mentioned) is only “random” because we do not yet have sufficient understanding to predict outcomes. Nature operates according to inflexible laws. I believe we are created by God, and we are a part of the nature He created.

    As a volunteer worker in a nursing home for the elderly, I have seen a number of people die - I don’t mean just the biological process, but also the emotional/spiritual process. I know that certainty (“I am right”) is very significant in the quality of a person’s death.

    While I believe in one absolute Truth, each person’s role or place in that Truth will not be the same. Because I believe the Christian Bible is right, does not mean that I believe every Muslim is going to hell. Our place in the universal Truth is ordained by God.
     
  11. seattlegal

    seattlegal Why do cows say mu?

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2005
    Messages:
    6,590
    Likes Received:
    62
    I stumbled acrossed this, and thought it might be interesting to share it here. It could serve to stimulate some different lines of thought.
    Is truth like a living thing?
     
  12. kenod

    kenod "to live is Christ"

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Messages:
    307
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you mean, do we grow in our understanding of the Truth, both as a people, and as individuals, then I believe the answer is yes.

    Once we thought the earth was flat, and the sun went around the earth.

    Slavery has always been wrong, but as a people, we took some time to come to that understanding.

    Even in Christian religious thought there have been significant world-wide developments: the Reformation (16C); the Wesleyan holiness movement(18C); the Pentecostal movement (20C). Not all have been embraced by every Christian church, however. I see these movements as adding to the Truth; not a different Truth.
     
  13. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2005
    Messages:
    21,270
    Likes Received:
    1,689
    I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart.

    I must admit, I've really never been outta the states...Canada, Mexico and the Caribean can't really be considered traveling the world...but I have been all over this continent...and more often than not on my thumb, at the mercy of my fellow man, and have been deeply impressed. Coast to coast numerous times, up and down both shores, and from the Yukon Territory down into the SW all on my thumb...slept in homes on couches, on beds, was fed and taken care of by this wonderful extended human family.

    My sister after a two year stint in the Peace Corp, left Benin and traveled around Africa and across the desert, middle east and into Europe...met glorious wonderful sharing humans along the way... tis the mob mentality, whether religous or governmental that spurs us to discord it appears to me.

    I think we all know our truths, our beliefs, our faiths differ....so what, let us enjoy what we have.
     
  14. Abogado del Diablo

    Abogado del Diablo Ferally Decent

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2004
    Messages:
    745
    Likes Received:
    0
    And "the Truth" sets us free from the latter to get back in touch with the former.
     
  15. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2003
    Messages:
    9,906
    Likes Received:
    5
    I'd like to point out something here:

    Your "thumb" got the attention of one passing by. His/her heart felt an emotional tug in one direction or another. His/her will decided which action to follow concerning the emotional tug they felt. Within a span of a few seconds, the observer of your thumb searched their own personal history, compared experiences even closely resembling the situation at hand (no pun intended), considered historical references of other's stories told to the observer about similar situations, considered the risk/reward factors, and made a "decision" to either pick you up, or drive right past...

    What does this have to do with truth?...Truth isn't so simple as we'd like to believe. Maybe Truth is ultimately about self, and self satisfaction...

    just a thought

    v/r

    Q
     
  16. Abogado del Diablo

    Abogado del Diablo Ferally Decent

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2004
    Messages:
    745
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's a new angle in this disucussion. Can you elaborate?
     
  17. flowperson

    flowperson Oannes

    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Messages:
    2,612
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for this Seattle. It helps to clear up a mystery that I have often cited in the past.

    Did you know that in the ancient times Celtic priests also had to be poets (What a surprise, huh)?. Anthropologists have discovered that periodically four priests would lash themselves firmly to a large tree in their community and face the four cardinal points of direction. They would then commence to sing and recite from memory the poetic sagas of the histories of their people, and they would do this when they felt that their community needed sacred guidance. Sometimes these sessions went on for many hours at a time, perhaps even days, depending upon the needs of the community. This was the way that oral histories were recited and remembered before the advent of writing in many Celtic communities.

    Based upon your citation and upon knowledge of cultural history items such as this... I would say that yes, truth is a living thing, and sometimes it doesn't take much to kill it. For both truth and life may be very fragile and strong things at the same time, just like trees. Sometimes susceptible to destruction but also replicable and reproducible as it were, through seeding and new growth. Whereas lies require ever more energy and embellishment over time to maintain their effects, and they always die in the end without exact replications.

    THE WORD !

    flow....;)
     
  18. Abogado del Diablo

    Abogado del Diablo Ferally Decent

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2004
    Messages:
    745
    Likes Received:
    0
    Here's my best answer to the questions I pose. "The Truth" is two things:

    First, it is "the Truth" that none of knows the objective truth. We don't know or understand the nature of being, the Universe, its purpose, or our place in it no matter how much we assert that our metaphorical "faith" statements or creeds somehow capture the objective reality in which "we" exist.

    Second, "the Truth" is that the identity we create for ourselves, the division between "me" and "God" and "me" and "other" and "good" and "evil" are all illusions created by our dependence on reason and language. Moreover, all the things we thing define our "self" are of our own creation. The Word of God (the Logos) is indeed the divine creative power of the whole Universe. Because God exists as "I am" only when there exists "other." There can be no consciousness of "self" without the fundamental schism between self and the wholeness of just being.

    Thus, the "Fall" is about how the temptation of moral reasoning (eating of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil) has separated us from God and convinced us to judge ourselves, each other and the Garden in which we live (and by extension, God). And the sacrifice of Jesus shows us the way back to the Garden and unity with the Father - by unconditional love, i.e. living beyond good and evil trusting that the only judgment we will receive for our sins is the one we give to ourselves. We must die for the sins of others and forgive them even as we do. And if we cling to our belief that we know good from evil and must judge, condemn, or change ourselves, others or our world in accordance with that imagined knowledge, we will continue to be separate from each other and separate from God.

    Indeed, Jesus is the Truth, the Light and Way. And no one comes to the Father but through him. However, it is also the Truth that the Truth is One, even though we each may find a different way to express our experience of it. So one who finds the Truth and the Way has found the Truth and the Way, regardless of whether they call it "Jesus", "God", "Allah" the "Brahman", the "Tao" . . .

    As far as the dialogue, so long as we think we know the truth (little "t"), we don't know the Truth. And there can be no real dialogue.


    My 2 cents.
     
  19. Janz

    Janz What's Amatta U

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2006
    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hmmmm, very interesting. So are you saying that as long as we think that we have all the correct answers from each of our "worldviews;" and that,we believe those answers are true for all people in all times, then we cannot have a real dialogue with others who may or may not think the same way?

    Yes, I can see how one can reach that conclusion. If we think that we know the "answers for all" then we will come to the table with a hidden agenda to convert others to our worldview. I experienced this firsthand, a few years back when I was involved with Dialogue Dinners/Food For Thought Gatherings in Colorado Springs. Our mission was to have people from differing beliefs and backgrounds meet for dinner and discussion in each other's homes for at least 6 times.

    I helped train the volunteer facilitators for each group. We wrote a manual from which I pulled the information on debate vs dialogue to share with this thread. The program went really well for awhile with hundreds of people of different racial, religious and political backgrounds and beliefs participating in the dinners/dialogue.

    However, after awhile, when those people who had signed up with ulterior motives saw that no one was converting to their truth, they left in droves. For them to consider another viewpoint was simply a waste of time.

    I know that I have some more to share on dialogue and collective learning as implements of community change; but it is late, and I have many miles to go before I sleep.....:cool:
     
  20. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2004
    Messages:
    3,915
    Likes Received:
    0
    So, no vehicle, no raft. Just swim.

    ?

    luna
     

Share This Page