Understanding Truth: Thought-Provoking Perspectives

The search for the absolute truth is something that humans have searched for since the beginning of man. It can even be said that the debate about whether or not absolute truth exists is something that has been discussed since the beginning of time, or at least since the beginning of philosophy and religion as we know it. One may think that truth is universal; however, the perception of truth is as varied as the number of cultures and religions and philosophies that exist. Some do believe, indeed, in an absolute truth. Christianity is a religion with such a belief, and Christians see truth outside themselves, independent of what they see or do. However, for many people, truth is relative to the world in which an individual lives and how they perceive that world and react to it.

Philosophical Perspectives of Truth

  • Truth (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy): This encyclopedia of philosophy discusses the fact that truth is one of the largest and most controversial subjects in philosophy. The article presents historical philosophies of truth such as the neoclassical, Tarski’s theory of truth, realism and anti-realism, deflationism, and others.
  • Truth [The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy]: This encyclopedia entry involves philosophical views on what can be considered true and what cannot, and it also focuses on the most significant theories of truth, which are the Correspondence Theory, the Semantic Theory, the Deflationary Theory, the Coherence Theory, and the Pragmatic Theory.
  • Eternal Philosophical Questions: This page is sponsored by the Principa Cybernetica Project, and it proposes a central “world view” regarding truth and the essence of the universe. This site lays down some of the basic principles of this worldview and introduces the readers to the true meaning of life.
  • Philosophy and Ideas: Truth Is Stranger Than It Used to Be: This article about truth focuses on the trends that the philosophies of truth have taken, and ponders the possibility of whether truth can change just because times and circumstances have changed. It provides history of the changing theories of truth.
  • Absolute Truth: The definition of absolute truth is provided as inflexible and unchangeable, and this article puts absolute truth beside relativism to show the difference and discusses whether absolute truth is a logical necessity.
  • On Truth and Reality: This page presents many philosophers and quotes by the individuals on truth and what they believe reality to be.
  • Socrates: This history and overview of Socrates makes mention of his pursuit of and devotion to truth as well as explains many of his other theories.
  • Aristotle on Truth: This article, written by Paolo Crivelli, gives the reader a thorough introduction to Aristotle’s theory of truth and his view on falsehoods.

Religious Perspectives of Truth

  • The Philosophy of Truth in Christianity: This is a review of Michael Henry’s book I Am The Truth by Susan Emanuel of Stanford University. Henry’s, as well as the author’s, belief is that truth is Christ-centered, and, in contrast, the world around us is false.
  • My Search for Truth: Dr. Michael Strauss presents to the reader the fact that Christianity is a historically-proven truth, and that, as a physicist, this objective truth is paramount to his understanding and belief. However, he hastens to explain that objective truth is not the only “truth” in Christianity, as Jesus and our relationship with Him is a truth as well.
  • Truth and Religion: The Holy Bible states that Jesus Christ is “The Truth” manifested, and the Christian religion is based on that. This being said, controversy is born, and then martyrdom as a result of those who are willing to sacrifice themselves and die for the truth they believe to be real. This article delves into this subject and presents why martyrdom has been so closely linked to Christianity, and why truth is so paramount to them.
  • Truth and Religion Reconsidered: This analytical approach to examining truth in religion begins by pointing out that there are many truths that must be discussed in regard to religion, the most important being which religion is true, and furthermore going into what is true in each religion.
  • Experiments in Truth: Nicholas Gier discusses the role of truth in the teachings of Aristotle, Buddha, and Confucius, and he puts them in context with Gandhi’s teachings of truth and knowledge.
  • Mahayana Buddhism: This explanation of Mahayana Buddhism, a reformed movement of Theravada Buddhism, explores the acquisition of truth by those who aspire to holiness not unlike Buddha.
  • Buddhism - Butler University: This history of the life of Siddhartha Guatama, who became the first Buddha and his meditation and eventual enlightenment of the Four Noble Truths. The first Noble Truth is that life equals suffering; the second explains that suffering comes from our human desire for things of this world; the third shows that if humans let go of their desires, suffering will end; and finally, the fourth Noble Truth is a path to the end of suffering known as The Eightfold Path.
  • Paths to Truth: Those who follow Hindu practices believe that Truth is relative to each person who can grasp only the reality of his part of the Truth. Thus, religion is the path to find the ultimate, or full scope of Truth.
  • Islam, Hinduism and Truth: A discussion about truth in Islam and Hinduism and implications for politics and the recent violence in India.
  • Is Islam Based on Truth?: This article is written by one who wishes to dispute the fact the Islam believes that their religion and their Bible, the Koran, is based on Absolute Truth.
  • 'We Are God' is the Truth Behind World Religion: The truth is that all religion is simply God incarnate in each person. Each person is in himself God and truth, and, therefore, everything is relative, and all religions are essentially one religion and fall under one Truth.

Scientific Perspectives of Truth

  • Scientific Truth: This author relishes the fact that truth can, indeed, be proven through scientific and mathematical experiments, and he finds comfort in these things. However, he points out that this truth comes at the expense of not knowing to be truth abstract notions such as justice, love, and humanity. These abstract notions cannot be proven true in scientific terms, and wonders, then, if they can ever really be true.
  • Method for Finding Scientific Truth: This article seeks to distinguish scientific truth, which can be proven or disproven by clear observations of reality, and those of religion or philosophy, as those truths are still a matter of conflict and controversy among many people.
  • Scientific Realism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy): This is an explanation of scientific realism, which is the satisfaction of knowing that when science is presented, it is supposed and accepted that it is a truth that has been observed or investigated and can be believed without question.
  • Pseudoscience and the Problem of Scientific Truth: This discussion of pseudoscience warns that science cannot be accepted as truth. Science, is, in fact, merely trust in another person’s experiments, and, thus, their reality or their interpretation of what truth is.
  • Truth in Constructive Empiricism: This article examines Bas van Franssen’s claims of truth in constructive empiricism rather than the scientific realism that had been prominent up until that time.
  • Truth - Richard G. Scott: Richard Scott is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and he puts religious side by side with scientific proof, offering two ways of achieving and identifying truth.
  • A Beautiful Theory: That something beautiful must also be true is evaluated in this article and is actually disposed of. Something beautiful is not always true or seen to be what it is.
  • Gassendi: Aaron Edstrom looks at the Scientific Revolution of the eighteenth century, and how Gassendi and Galileo, in particular, carved the way to scientific truths, but yet identified with spiritual truths as well.
  • The Terrible Truth About Truth: This article asserts that the problem with scientific, or any truth, is that it is simplistic by most standards, and none really see the whole picture of truth and never examine it.