How should we determine the truth? On a most primitive level we have the “inner guide,” that “gut” notion about what is truth in any given situation that is generally shared by all peoples regardless of their geography or social environment. For example, we all know that it is wrong (a truth) to torture and abuse others, especially little children.
I personally theorize that we are all born with a basic sense of truth and of right and wrong. It is imprinted, if you will, in our DNA. However, these values can be overridden, violated and perhaps obliterated by our free will.
Our fundamental gut judgment must be enhanced, validated and refined by the application of our “common sense,” our logic and our reason. These tools will keep us on the straight and narrow and compliment our “heart” in the pursuit of truth.
We should check our “facts” to make sure they are indeed facts and not just suppositions. Do our truths comport with real life. Can they be successfully applied to our human experience; are they workable. Our truths should be verifiable by third parties. Is there a general consensus among informed and reasonable minds as to our conclusions, such as an agreement among members of a jury.
Do our truths have longevity? Are they universal? We should test and re-test our truths often, as impartially as we can. The biblical writer Paul said, “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put away childish things.” At our best we are always growing and changing and so our truths may also require modification and revision as we hopefully become more mature analysts and thinkers.
Why is determining truth so important?
To be continued…..