Absolute Truth

As Catholics, we believe in absolute truth. I completely agree. For instance, when it comes to morals, yes, there are moral absolutes.

However, is it heretical or wrong to say that in some cases, there is no absolute truth? For example, consider two people who are arguing over ice cream flavors. This appears to be a case where the truth is completely relative, i.e., there is no absolute answer. Two people arguing over which book is the better one could be another example.

So, when we profess that there is absolute truth, are we saying that absolutely? That is, are we saying that in every situation, there is an absolute truth even if it’s two people arguing over whether red wine is better than white?

When we say “There is absolute truth” we mean that absolutely. There is absolute truth. It exists. There is a God. Worshiping God is a matter of justice. Lying is intrinsically evil. Etc.

But it does not follow that because absolute truth exists therefore there is nothing subjective in the world. Flavors and preferences are subjective. There is no “best” wine or ice cream flavor (although Hood makes a delicious chocolate frozen yogurt that gets pretty close to perfection).

Red wine is better than white.

The problem of course is that every religion truly believes their truth is absolute. :shrug: so imo it is wise to question everything and not blindly follow because everyone else does.

:yup:

Some things are subjective, and some things are objective.

I believe we say with absolutely certainty that it’s wrong to get into a serious argument with someone over which is the best flavor of ice cream.

I’m not so sure on that. As Catholics, yes, we believe in absolute truth. However, I know a lot of protestants that do not believe in absolute truth, but feel people can be saved through Jesus “relative” to how they view him, and view his teachings.

Absolute truth is necessary and God is the primary truth. Numbers 23:19:)

catholic.com/video/is-faith-a-reliable-pathway-to-the-truth

I guess- I may be getting over my head here- that there are still absolute facts about things that can be subjectively interpreted. For example

Some of the facts are-
Villa Savoye is a modernist villa completed in 1931 by the architect known as Le Corbusier. It is in Poissy, France.

My interpretation-
-I think it’s a beautiful house

Some may disagree with me on interpretation, but no one could disagree on the truth about the structure itself.

Going back to your example, we’d get kind of bogged down if we discussed the particular facts about every kind of ice cream (or maybe even individual bowls/cones/scoops/etc).

So, correct me if I’m wrong, there still is absolute truth about things which are subject to subjective taste.

The sphere of truth, in short, is the sphere of those matters
about which we think disagreement is profitable precisely because
we think these are matters about which it is possible to
resolve differences of opinion and to reach agreement instead.
There are matters of a quite different sort concerning which we
think the very opposite. These are matters of taste rather than
of truth.

We are all acquainted with the commonplace maxim De gustibus
non disputandum est. About matters of taste, there is no
point in arguing. Disputes are fruitless. Our differences of
opinion look irreconcilable. Arguing about such matters will
not bring us into agreement. On the contrary, we should wisely
live with and gladly tolerate differences of opinion that express
divergent tastes.
Six Great Ideas- Mortimer Adler

It is wise to inquire and have good sight. Who wants to be blind?
It is also wise to realize that there is such a thing as truth to be known. And even though every religion believes it is fully true, they can’t all be right.
Some are partially true, only one is fully true. (this does not mean that it’s adherents fully comprehend God or all the aspects of the truth, but rather recognizes the value and integrity of the truth being sought)

Uh huh :curtsey:

I agree with you. No one can see the entire picture. Each of us are only able to view a portion of the picture. It can be compared to a blind man only able to feel the elephant’s nose. We all have our blind areas. It’s utterly impossible to see reality in its entirety.

And it’s our responsibility as adults to explore, understand, and seek to make an assessment of truth (the complete picture) based on the logical facts and not on popular opinion.

No they don’t. It’s pretty easy to find Baha’is, Hindus, Buddhists, Germanic pagans/neo-pagans and probably others who would never dream of telling you what they possess is absolute truth. Heck, a lot of them are reluctant to even take their religion too literally. The only religions I can think of which claim absolute truth are Christianity, Islam and judaism.

I realize this is a “Moral Theology” board and if my comment is out of place here feel free to delete it forthwith…however the colors blend made a remark:

No they don’t. *It’s pretty easy to find Baha’is, Hindus, Buddhists, Germanic pagans/neo-pagans and probably others who would never dream of telling you what they possess is absolute truth.

Abdul-Baha Who was an Exemplar for Baha’is remarked once:

“There is nothing in this heart save the effulgences of the splendor of the morn of Meeting, and it does not speak but** the absolute truth** from your Lord.”

(Abdu'l-Baha, Baha'i World Faith p. 434)

and

"Each one is an evident proof sufficient for mankind; each one from foundation to apex proclaims the essential unity of God and humanity, the love of God, the abolition of war and the divine standard of peace. Each one also inculcates divine morality, the manifestation of lordly graces – in every word a book of meanings. For the Word of God is collective wisdom, absolute knowledge and eternal truth."

(Abdu'l-Baha, The Promulgation of Universal Peace, p. 154)

Excellent… and yet, my point (which was you can easily find Baha’is, among others, who don’t believe what they have is absolute truth) still stands. I know several who have told me as much. Perhaps they’re renegades in your religion.

My only response to you my friend is that no Baha’i “stands” above Abdul-Baha.:slight_smile:

Agreed, but can there be an absolute or ultimate truth for God, something so great that possible God could do nothing greater.

Could God love each and everyone of us as he loves himself?

Can God love us more than he loves himself?

Could the greatest commandments be called greatest, because first they had a greatest meaning for God?

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.