at the Water's Edge

Living life and learning all I can along the way!

The Meaning(fulness) of Truth

The idea of truth is something that’s been brought up in conversations around me several times recently, and has hence been on my mind.  Truth seeks to answer the “Matrix-esque” question: What is Real?  Truth can be defined as “accuracy” or “the conformity to reality or actuality”.  You may have heard the phrase “absolute truth” thrown around.  How is that different?  Isn’t all truth absolute?  Some people would have us think not.  There is a movement of relativism in our society which claims that different things can be true for different people.  I don’t buy it.  I know this ideology has been around for a long time, but I think a lot of the recent shift toward relativism is reactionary and an attempt to be “tolerant” of other ideas and beliefs.  But what does belief have to do with truth?  I hope to believe in things that are true; I hope not to believe in lies or deceptions.  And I hope the same for others.  But can my belief impact what is true?  No.  People can have different beliefs.  I can be “tolerant” and respect the beliefs of others, even if they differ vastly from my own.  In the end, however, it doesn’t matter what you believe.  What matters is what is true.  If I believe in God, and I believe in Jesus as my Savior, what difference does that make unless my belief is based on truth?  Likewise, if you don’t believe in God, it makes no difference – unless, of course, there is a God.  Then it makes all the difference in the world. 

People like to be “spiritual.”  I think because you can be “spiritual” and even hold to some form of Theism without really seeking out truth, or at least the whole truth.  It feels nice to believe that there is some Greater Good out there, but you don’t have the commitment of actually finding out what that Greater Good is (or worse yet, what it wants from you).  As long as we’re kind and loving and contributing to the Greater Good, we must be on track , right?  But what if there's more?  What if there is a Greater Good, a Truth, that can be known, that wants to be known, and we choose to ignore it?  Perhaps knowing the Truth could give meaning and purpose to the vague spirituality which so often still leaves a void in one's soul.

Of course, there are others who prefer the naturalistic route.  If it can’t be proven with hard “scientific” facts, it simply is not possible and cannot be true.  If science doesn’t prove God, he must not exist.  I can sympathize with this view better than the simply spiritual, I think, because I tend to be somewhat of a skeptic myself.  I’m not prone to believe in something without strong evidence showing it to be true.  But not all facts are scientific.  I like the example from the movie "Contact" where the character Palmer challenges Ellie to prove that she loved her dad.  You can't prove love with science.  You know in your heart when you love some one, and you prove it by your actions.

I think most of us, even professing Christians, have a tendency to lean too heavily toward one end or the other: either overly ambiguous in our spirituality, or overly skeptical of anything beyond the physical.  People have so many different ideas, opinions, beliefs, and philosophies – how do we know what to think?  I don't know about you, but I want my beliefs to be based on what is true, to conform to actuality or reality, lest I deceive myself.  If you're not sure what you believe, I would encourage you to seek the truth, openly and honestly.  And in your search for truth, seek facts, not opinions, remembering that some facts are known not in the mind, but in the heart. 

What do I "believe" about Truth?  I believe what Jesus says:

“If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.  Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” – John 8:31-32

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Hi there! My name is Dana and I live in West Michigan with my husband, Tom and our dog Copernicus. I created this space as a place to share the things I learn along this journey I call life. I work in marketing and I'm a sort of Jane of All Trades, interested in all things nature, gardening, cooking, exploring and learning new things. This blog is a conglomeration of my interests, hobbies, life and life lessons. Thanks for stopping by!