Absolute truth?
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31-07-2014, 10:34 PM
Absolute truth?
I never really did understand what people meant by this. Some theists like Sye Ten whatever ask this a lot. What does this suppose to mean and what is your answer for it?


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31-07-2014, 10:43 PM
RE: Absolute truth?
Its a vacuous statement, especially when Sye says it. Philosophically speaking there is no difference between "truth" and "absolute truth". They mean the same thing. Truth is absolute, by definition. They only use it in order to conflate it with our more common, every day understanding of the word "truth", because in everyday life "truth" means a lot of things and you rarely get something that is "absolute". It's also a hop, skip and a jump away from the cosmological argument, because any honest atheists has to admit that perception is indeed fallible and therefore nothing can be known with "absolute" certainty (not that this doesn't also apply to theist, and not that this wouldn't apply to theist even if there were a god, but I digress). It's a stupid term, used by idiots, to make flawed arguments. For me it's one of my buzz terms. When I hear it an alarm goes off and a robotic voice sounds in my head "warning, warning, idiot approaching. Do not engage. Repeat, do not engage".
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31-07-2014, 10:44 PM
RE: Absolute truth?
(31-07-2014 10:34 PM)Shadow Fox Wrote:  I never really did understand what people meant by this. Some theists like Sye Ten whatever ask this a lot. What does this suppose to mean and what is your answer for it?

Well, when presuppositionists like Sye talk about it, they're basically saying, "I know something for certain without any justification for claiming knowledge, but that's okay, because it's this special type of magical knowledge that is beyond questioning and which justifies itself by something that is indistinguishable from circular reasoning but is still valid. No, you're not allowed to question it, because you don't have the same magical knowledge that I do. No, stop it, I said it was beyond questioning. I said no! STOP QUESTIONING IT!"

When less self-absorbed people say it, they're talking about something that is supposedly unquestionably true. When these people are reasonably responsible, they limit claims of absolute truth to things like truisms, tautologies, axioms of logic, and maybe math.

Personally, I regard the concept of a better truth that's separate and higher from, well, ordinary truth, as pretty much rubbish.
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31-07-2014, 11:03 PM
RE: Absolute truth?
Absolute truth is like Pi, it exists as a concept, but there's no practical value in trying to apply it to the last digit of precision. For most applications 3.14 is more than adequate. So too with "truth", or what is known. Absolute truth means nothing left unanswered, no knowledge unknown. Nobody makes every measurement with a micrometer, or makes a decision with every contingency accounted for; we all operate on the practical assumptions of "close enough". And experience is our gauge for what constitutes "close enough".

Unfortunately, there's much about life where even "close enough" is still beyond our reach, so the need to enlarge our fund of knowledge is relentless. As we apply new knowledge, new unknowns multiply. Learning never ends.

But any serious attempt to attain "absolute" truth is as misguided as trying to pave a road using a micrometer and a microscope to pour the tar. It's missing the point: pave a serviceable road, not lay the pavement down to 42 decimal places. Attain a degree of "truth" that allows us to achieve our life's desires without an excess of mayhem, and not spend an extravagant fraction of our time in pointless debate about whether some truth is "absolute".
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01-08-2014, 05:33 AM
RE: Absolute truth?
Wouldn't relativity smash the idea of an absolute truth ?

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01-08-2014, 06:31 AM
RE: Absolute truth?
(01-08-2014 05:33 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  Wouldn't relativity smash the idea of an absolute truth ?

Absolutely not. Drinking Beverage

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01-08-2014, 07:01 AM
RE: Absolute truth?
(01-08-2014 05:33 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  Wouldn't relativity smash the idea of an absolute truth ?

I would say the uncertainty principle of quantum mechanics is a scientific proof that absolute knowledge is impossible, therefore omniscience is impossible.

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01-08-2014, 09:11 AM
RE: Absolute truth?
(01-08-2014 07:01 AM)TheInquisition Wrote:  
(01-08-2014 05:33 AM)Rahn127 Wrote:  Wouldn't relativity smash the idea of an absolute truth ?

I would say the uncertainty principle of quantum mechanics is a scientific proof that absolute knowledge is impossible, therefore omniscience is impossible.

Ah, but with omnipotence comes the ability to observe all things, including position and momentum, and all other things too, simultaneously and without error or uncertainty.

Besides, OMNIscience already means all things are known, including position and momentum of every quantum particle, without requiring observation and without uncertainty.

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01-08-2014, 09:27 AM
RE: Absolute truth?
I've always seen it as the "last stand" of a theist's argument. It's an attempt to remove legitimacy from all arguments since we cannot be 100% certain of our personal observations. It reminds me of someone detonating a nuclear bomb in their own backyard to spite the neighbors.

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01-08-2014, 09:42 AM
RE: Absolute truth?
(01-08-2014 09:11 AM)Aseptic Skeptic Wrote:  
(01-08-2014 07:01 AM)TheInquisition Wrote:  I would say the uncertainty principle of quantum mechanics is a scientific proof that absolute knowledge is impossible, therefore omniscience is impossible.

Ah, but with omnipotence comes the ability to observe all things, including position and momentum, and all other things too, simultaneously and without error or uncertainty.

Besides, OMNIscience already means all things are known, including position and momentum of every quantum particle, without requiring observation and without uncertainty.

Ain't God great?!

LOL, you got me there.

Though God wasn't able to locate Adam in the garden of Eden, he sure doesn't sound omniscient. Oops

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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