Another Couple/Few Sincere Questions, for all, if I may:

by AGuest 18 Replies latest jw friends

  • Awen


    1) Which concerns you MORE: truth... or consensus?

    2) Is truth, in your opinion, ONLY that which is known/has been proven (however you deem "proof") thus far?

    3) Can something be true, albeit not YET proven?

    4) Does truth "change"?


    1) Truth

    2) Yes

    3) No. Then it's Theory which is a proposed explanation whose status is still conjectural, in contrast to well-established propositions that are regarded as reporting matters of actual fact.

    4) Yes. Only in the sense that evidence is found or discovered that refutes or confirms the previous Truth. An example would be the supposition that the Earth was flat, proved wrong by Mariners, (such as Ferdinand Magellan's circumnavigation of the Earth).

  • AGuest

    So, then the earth WAS flat before the mariners proved it wasn't, dear Awen (the greatest of love and peace to you!)?

    Just askin'...

    Again, peace to you!

    YOUR servant, sister, and fellow slave of Christ,

    SA, who finds the responses... and their differences... quite interesting...

  • sabastious
    True, yet unproven... BUT only in scientific theory? Or true, yet unproven only in scientific theory? Not sure what you mean, even with your punctuation. Can you clarify, please? Thank you!

    Example: Evolution is a scientific theory in that the fundamentals are proven but the specifics require more data/speculation. Therefore, in a way, evolution is unproven truth.

    It's like a jigsaw puzzle. Once you get the edge pieces and a certain amount of middle pieces you can see what the picture is even though you can't identify every specific part.


  • sabastious
    What if what you think is true is that you shouldn't commit genocide, dear Sab (peace to you!). Would you still believe yourself wrong, even if no one else agreed?

    If no one else agreed then I would be mistaken. I believe in the requirement of community input because I believe we evolved into a pack hunter species.


  • AGuest

    Interesting, dear Sab... truly. I can't say that I understand the thinking behind either position... and I truly don't want to go off topic and/or bore you with why I don't... but thank you for sharing them with me. Again, peace to you!

    A slave of Christ,


  • OnTheWayOut

    I would like to revisit these questions to show how perspective and opinions get in the way.

    It has been stated that adult elephants cannot jump. We will skip varying definitions of "adult" and accept that it refers to elephants who are post-pubescent.

    The statement is accepted as true, but only by consensus. People who study elephants have never seen anybody manage to get an adult elephant to jump, so it is accepted as truth. And then, it must be clarified as follows: No adult elephant can jump, if by jumping we mean the state of having no feet on the ground at the same time after propelling oneself from a stationary position.

    But such a truth cannot be proven. Every single adult elephant that ever existed would have had to be tested, or the statement would have to say that no "living" elephant can jump, eliminating all past elephants from the statement since they were not tested. Even there, if an elephant could jump, it would be known that jumping is so difficult, so we would have to find some reason that each elephant would have no choice but to jump. It wouldn't be a fair test to just say "Jump" or reward any jump with a treat.

    So, the statement (with clarifiers) that adult elephants cannot jump is accepted as true, although it could never really be "proven."

    And it is always possible that, in the future, something that is clearly an elephant, will manage to "jump." Then this unproven truth will change. Or it can be said at that time that anything unproveable was only a theory, so this theory was "wrong" or else needed more clarifiers to make it true.

    I know.... I know..... There are already some who say they have seen elephants "jump" at the circus. There will even be those that insist that their minds are not wrong, their memories are not false. Their anecdotal evidence will have to be dismissed unless credible evidence can be made available to people who study things like whether elephants can jump or not. The experts will say how those elephants were not in a stationary position or were not propelled by themself or that (most likely) the elephant lifted front legs then rear legs at separate times and never actually had all four feet off the ground at the same time. No matter how much these circus-goers insist, they will have to be accepted as "wrong", "mistaken", "tricked" or something of that sort.

  • AGuest

    Still the wrong thread, Jer...


    Truth is a very difficult thing to nail down. It can be a slippery customer. T here is eternal truth and truth of the moment. If I say it’s midnight , I have to clarify which time zone I am referring to. If it really is midnight in that zone, I have spoken the truth. A moment later it’s no longer midnight . The claim was true at the time, so I made a true statement. If I believe it to be midnight but my watch is slow, I have been tricked into making a false claim. So truth will always depend on accurate information.

    That’s a very simple example. More complicated claims can be impossible to prove. Therefore we can only unanimously accept something as true when it has been proven. It has been said that everyone has their own truth. This is true but refers to subjective truth.

    Being human we still have a limited view of the world and universe. Most of the mysteries of the universe are beyond our ability to prove, so for the present they remain mysteries. As humans we have very poor tools for establishing absolute truth in abstract things so sometimes 'accepted truth' is arrived at by consensus, as in a court case.

    That's my take on truth but it won't be entirely accurate because the subject is much bigger than me.

  • Awen

    4) Truth is also relative to the experiences of the person. So just because some may have thought that at one time that the Earth was flat does not mean it actually was/is. The opinion of the person is based upon the evidence at hand at that time. Many people shared this belief until ones such as Ferdinand Magellan proved otherwise. Some were still skeptical until balloons were invented that allowed persons to reach high altitudes and see the curvature of the Earth. Still others remained skeptical until modern space flight enabled satellites to take pictures of the Earth from orbit, showing it's not flat at all.

    So no, the Earth wasn't flat except in the minds of those who held that opinion based upon the evidence they had when they formed their opinions. Truth is something that can and does change. History has shown this countless times.

    Today's Truth is Yesterday's Myth.

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