Absolute Truth: Is God real for everyone?


#1

I was reading an article by Parker Palmer for my Freshman Composition class. One of the issues he talked about in this piece was the idea of absoulte truth and relative truth. He believes that since we can never know things for sure, truth is just the process by which we communicate with one another, initiate in dialouge, have conflicts, and come to a greater understanding about things…

We had a discussion on this piece in class.

I objected to most of his article by saying that there are some truths which ARE absolute, such as… God exists. There is no debating this, or questioning this. God exists whether someone believes it or not. Well… the people in my class didn’t respond to this very well… saying that the truth that God exists is not true for everyone. But I said, it IS true, whether you think it is or not.

I’m really just looking for encouragement and support in this matter, more than an all out discussion. I believe we should KNOW that God exists, outside of whatever we can prove, but that it is also essential to dwell on these truths and come to more understanding. “Faith seeking understanding” and not… understanding seeking faith. The latter seemed to be what my class was trying to argue for.

It just frustrates me, that’s all… when people can hear the truth, know it, and then reject it. People are too afraid to claim that the fact that God exists is a truth that exists for all. They are too afraid to “offend” someone. But to be lax about an essential truth is like saying… “I think killing unborn children is wrong, but I have no right to impose that view on you.” <— This is the worst ideology to plague the modern world.


#2

Maybe you should start with something even more basic.
Do your classmates believe that they exist?

Is the statement “I exist.” something that they can know for sure is true?

If they can affirm that, then they must accept at least one absolute truth.

If they can’t affirm that, they may be wasting a lot of money on education for a person who may not exist.


#3

People are just afraid of any kind of commitment at all these days. Have you ever met someone who is “spiritual but not religious”? It’s because they don’t want to make any kind of real commitment. People who make God into a matter of personal opinion know that if He is not (which of course He is not) then they will have to make some sort of commitment to something other than themselves–and that is countercultural in this day and age–do whatever makes *you *feel good and believe whatever affirms what you’re doing. :yawn:


#4

We can indeed know that God exists, without faith. That is dogma.

In fact, such knowledge is presupposed by faith in God. Faith has to do with opening ourselves in trust to receive from God. And in that we see what just behavior would be towards God.

I know what you mean about people rejecting something they can know. But we ourselves do that. It boils down to the false judgment of selfishness. Man judges that he ought to be preferred to his Creator when it comes to honor and glory, and in this man is unjust. We need faith to be just. “The just man walks by faith”.

Habacuc 2:4 Behold, he that is unbelieving, his soul shall not be right in himself: but the just shall live in his faith.

hurst


#5

You have just come face to face with Post Modernism which holds that nothing is absolutely true. Truth is considered relative so that what is true for you may not be true for me. To state that,“There is no absolute truth” fractures logic because the statement itself is given as being absolutely true. :thumbsup:


#6

[quote=rwoehmke]You have just come face to face with Post Modernism which holds that nothing is absolutely true. Truth is considered relative so that what is true for you may not be true for me. To state that,“There is no absolute truth” fractures logic because the statement itself is given as being absolutely true. :thumbsup:
[/quote]

Yes! This is an important easy argument to remember that shows the illogical position of relativism.

Most people want to prove relativism because they want to choose their own moral relativism.

Here is an audio lecture from Peter Kreeft, A Refutation of Moral Relativism.


#7

The interesting thing was… the author of the article actually refuted the statement of “relativism” He did not believe that truth was subjective… whatever one believed. However, he did not believe in absolutism either… he called “truth” the process by which we continously enter into dialouge with each other to come to greater understandings of things. He basically said that we must constantly live in a state of denial about the things we know because we cannot know them for certain.


#8

Under the common definition of “truth” within the English language, it is not a Verb. Therefore defining it as a “process” is defining something other than the idea captured by the English word “truth”.

Regardless of the merits of that author’s idea, it has no relation to what is called “truth” by consented to language.

God exists, or not, regardless of the error of subjective experience of any person or group of persons that brings about differing conclusions. God’s existence is further not a “process”, even if that is how we wish to veiw it as such, any more than your existence is a relativistic process used by the rest of us as a mental crutch for us to assimilate self-generated thought processes as a transitional “reality” needed until we no longer need it. (which means his “process” is “subjective” by nature, even as they desired to avoid the argument that truth is subjective; just the author fooling themselves by overreaching in their semantics :wink: )

As mentioned elsewhere, to assert there is no “absolute”, as your source suggests, creates an absoulte which destoys the argument with its own existence.

Just another $.02 for consideration.


#9

[quote=JimG]Maybe you should start with something even more basic.
Do your classmates believe that they exist?

Is the statement “I exist.” something that they can know for sure is true?

If they can affirm that, then they must accept at least one absolute truth.

If they can’t affirm that, they may be wasting a lot of money on education for a person who may not exist.
[/quote]

Of course they then should consider the question: “Does money exist?” which, regretably, many are more convinced of than their own existence

:slight_smile:

peace

Jim


#10

If “we can never know know things for sure” -
then how can we know THAT for sure?

That “there are no absolute truths” is itself an absolutist statement, and therefore self-refutatory.


#11

God ist real to everyone who believes in Him
Yes, there is an absolute truth! Plenty of them, like If you jump down a skyscraper, you’ll die.
Those are facts. Facts too, are those we know from the mouth of Jesus, for He is God in the Holy Trinity, and he told us the absolute truth and neither upmade stories, lies nor fairy tales.
The only difference to our truths is: We’ll will see, not before after wir arrived in Gods Kingdom
Many of us don’t understand e.g. the Holy Trinity of God and they say; they don’t want to simply believe, but understand. One Person wrote to me: There is God the almighty creator of heaven and earth and everything there is. There is Jesus as the Son of God and he called Himself as the one and only way, the truth and the animation: Certainly He too, when being among us, prayed to God the Father. And there is the Holy Spirit, whom if we slag at Him, that sin never will be forgiven as we learn from Mt 12,31.
Yes and cleary: The „Three“ the divine Trinity, is he one and only God. Declared; this fact, manifested in the holy Bible at many verses, is definitely not so easily to be understood. People not too much concerned about Christianity, find quite of course the idea goofy – clear nonsence or even laughable. They think, it’s OF COURSE beyond all dignety and lordiness of God. How on earth would ever God give himself away to the disposal of human beings, to save the world. Why should He humiliate and really become a human being. OK we know and tell them Jesus was/is Human being and God at the same time. But this will forever be incomprehensive for Nonchristians – except comparatively few exceptions.
But: It was Jesus Himself, who told us about Gods Trinity and He told us, that He, Jesus, is part of that Trinity – among other sites e.g. in Joh 14,9: … Anyone who has seen me, has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? – and again, ever so clearly in Matth. 28/19: … Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name OF THE FATHER AND OF THE SON AND OF THE HOLY SPIRIT…
When we have the word of Jesus and accept it, then actually no further education should be necessary, for things simply are such and that’s all there’s to it. Consequent acceptance of the word of the Son of God, who was and lived with us, who suffered, was crucified and died, resurrected and now sits to the right of His Father God the Allmighty; is substructure for being allowed to be a Christian, viz. To follow Jesus in His word follow me in Math 4,19. Absolute acceptance doesn’t mean not to use ones brain. In the contrary, a lot of common sense is needed to understand and internalise.
In Luk 3/21 we find a second reference in the New Testament pointing out the Holy Spirit as part of Gods Trinity, who appeared over the head of Jesus „similar to a dove“. And again it’s Jesus, who indicated the Holy Spirit to us in Mt 12,32: … Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come…

First mentioning of the Holy Spirit we find in Luke 1,35 where God Fater, God Son and God Holy Spirit is named: The HOLY SPIRIT will come upon you, and the power of THE MOST HIGH will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the SON OF GOD.
The Holy Spirit once more became visible in the occurrence of Pentecost.
Deeper comprehension into the being of the Holy Trinity, gave us Ignatius of Loyola in his contemplations of the Holy Trinity.
When we emblaze ourselves with the title CHRISTIAN and consider ourselves to live in the word of God, we are definitely not entitled to declare things we don’t understand, as inexistent, just because we conceive things from our rather tiny human point of view, and sowith of course are unable to apprehend what’s so very much different from what we know.
Further more, we are not entitled to pray the Christian credo, if we at the same time select and as matter of fact believe just parts of what we pray.
There are but two options: Either we believe fully and altogether everything the Holy Bible (and thus Jesus who is the absolute truth Himself) and the church explains to us, or we “humanize” God, and refuse to believe that God could be else from what we are think He could be. In that case we’ll remain being heathens; but will have to understand when we see; standing before Jesus Christ to be judged according to Matth 10:32.


#12

hi there
anybody in?
hello!
it’s just me :smiley:


#13

isn’t it very much different from this statement?
Catholicism may be the easiest religion to live by but it’s the one an only true way to handle or carry out and believe the word of Jesus Christ. That’s why it is a pleasure to us and a huge privilege to be, think, believe and act catholic.
We all know from St. Paul; it takes a lot of reason, brain, thinking and sanity to - not just believe, but live “in” God. No, it’s not at all “hard” to do so, it’s rather then hard - heimish - kind of to feel at home where we belong to. With OUR FATHER, who loves us so much, that he gave his own son to save us. This is the truth. The absolute truth; the truth we won’t just have to believe, but perceive so much, that we can even trace it if me like, trace it upon to God himself. That is - if we are given the grace to be able - to be allowed - to believe.


#14

All over the world this understanding of truth is right and wrong at the same time. People hold at least this statement for absolutely true and are ever so happy, they meaningly found something that’s true. :dancing:

But that is not so. On yonder earth things seem as such believed - untrue, but it’s a made up believe that’s wrong. Creation - all that God had created, is definitely true. It’s true, that we originate of God, as no human exists out of himself. He isn’t even out of his parents, nor are they made by themselves. Human can’t even create the seed of a simple grass, ever more so any creature.

And then, knowing, or rather having come to the conclusion that we are “from God” - we also know that there is the word, for in the beginning there was the word, and the word was with God and God was the word. And this word we are told by God himself, and again 2000 years ago by Gods only son Jesus Christ is the truth and nothing but the truth. Believe that and you will one day feel that that is so through the grace of God.


#15

The Ethiops say that their gods are flat-nosed and black.
While the Thracians say that theirs have blue eyes and red hair.
Yet if cattle or horses or lions had hands and could draw
And could sculpture like men, then the horses would draw their gods
Like horses, and cattle like cattle, and each would then shape
Bodies of gods in the likeness, each kind, of its own.

The gods did not reveal, from the beginning,
All things to us; but in the course of time,
Through seeking we may learn, and know things better…
These things are, we conjecture, like the truth.
But as for certain truth, no man has known it,
Nor will he know it; neither of the gods,
Nor yet of all the things of which I speak.
And even if by chance he were to utter
The final truth, he would himself not know it:
For all is but a woven web of guesses.

Xenophanes


#16

Hardly ever poorer text was red in this forum or elsewhere, than this one above:

…”some say that their gods are flat-nosed and black.
some say that theirs have blue eyes and red hair.
horses would draw their gods horsy
cattle like cattle, and each would then shape
Bodies of gods in the likeness, each kind, of its own”…<

Now – isn’t that a thoroughgoing stupid opinion, trying to turn believers to fools, disregarding the fact, that believe in the one and only God is by no means made up by the human race, but brought to us by God Himself?!

One might well enunciate all about God, a woven web of guesses, but then one must wantonly disregard a lot of facts known by anyone of an even small shine of education and very poor and little imagination and power of deduction to simply putt two and two together.

As God created mankind (the so called Adam) God also spoke to mankind. No other human being knew about God. Even if God had not spoken to many persons and mankind itself, we would have combined with our godgiven common sense, hat there is „a“ creator God. But then direct instruction from God to chosen people (Prophets, Moses etc.) we knew the truth; and we knew it finally through Jesus Christ.

But then there are people who doubt daytime and argue it’s night. Poor things really. Though we all know atheists, who are proud to be an atheist; even argue it’s brainless to believe in God. Well, let’s commiserate with such poor things, for what else do they have but their little believe that “God doesn’t exist”. Actually – it won’t matter to us, but they will see.
I often questioned those unco guides: „What, if it’s true?! What about you then? No – we can’t prove belief to you, we can’t present and serve you the truth – but you’ll see it with your own eyes and be utterly disturbed“.


#17

Well, Karlsruhe, how fortunate you are to know so much more than the philosophers and theologians who have filled libraries discussing such things.


#18

how very right you are - at least in this point :thumbsup:
theologians however, if and prodiding they really where theologians, never said anything else - for they where my teachers:D :smiley: :smiley:


#19

Maybe they should get out more.


#20

what’s really surprising is, that people who think all Christianity and all believe in God - the one and only God shown to us by Jesus Christ - would be a lie, hardly ever would frankly say what the alternatively think or believe.
Is it true you think there is nothing but just what we see, feel, assess and is proved to be such and such; and constellations we can’t see, feel, assess, prove and substantiate simply are not existent?
Theology and the knowledge of God is not at all a mere philosophy, it is the verification of what human kind knew ever since they where. Who says that’s wrong, calls Jesus Christ a liar.
Don’t you think that’s a deadly risk to take?! Russian Roulette? For an alleged inexistence of God never could be proved. Sure God’s existence too can’t be proved. If we could, we wouldn’t have to believe. But once you really do believe, you’ll be given the grace to feel it’s absolute trueness.
So; wouldn’t it be quite advisable to believe – just in case and for a try. Of course it’s a lot easier to simply say it’s untrue and I therefore don’t care. A lot harder would be, to use all common sense, reason and intellect one has and with those talents (given to us by God) explores the Word of Jesus Christ.


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