Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Is there Absolute Truth?

I have heard from many people of faith that those of us who do not believe in God have no basis for absolute truth. This means that we must see all truth as relative and therefore we have no basis for morality, ethics or social value. In fact only those with a belief in a God can actually use logic in a meaningful way.

This to me seems patently absurd as the very claim that there are no absolute truths is absurd. Why because the claim itself should say: There are no absolute truth except the absolute truth that there are no absolute truths. In other words the statement itself is illogical and contradicts itself.

If there is no God what then can absolute truth rest upon? The answer might surprise you, reality. The problem is not that we have no basis for absolute truth but that we do not perceive it readily. In short we change our minds when what we have understood to be the absolute truth was in fact mistaken. It is not that such truths do not exist but that we are poor at discerning them.

If God were the only basis for absolute truth then those with faith in the right God would know absolute truths and they would never change. However what we see from all religions is the changing understanding of what the absolute truths are because they were improperly understood. This is the same for those of us without a belief in a God, as our understanding improves so our knowledge of what truths are absolute changes.

In essence a belief in god is not needed to provide a foundation for absolute truth.



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