How do I respond when people throw out the tired old line about “What’s true for you might not be true for me”?
And what’s red for you might be green for me? Don’t think so. One of us is clearly blind if we say that.
Obviously they don’t believe that anything is really, truly ‘true’. So they can reject your ‘truth’ in favor of a more appealing ‘truth’ of their own.
I like Lily’s answer.
Imagine if you told your bill collectors that while money might work for them, it doesn’t for you, and so you will pay them in pipe cleaners instead.
I find that most of the time, the mantra is said most when people are backed in to a corner in an argument and have no where to go.
If you ARE in an argument, back up with them and ask them where they don’t agree with you. If they say “no, I agree with you, I just don’t have to accept it” or something along those lines, I would try to call them out on it.
Say something like: “It doesn’t make sense that you can agree with me and not hold the same thing I do. Either you don’t agree with me or you’re a lunatic.” Of course, there are more tactful ways of putting it, but I think much can be had by a frank discussion about the absurdity of relativism.
Just keep asserting that there is ONE truth. I would also brush up on history to see how this “relativism” snuck in while we weren’t looking. More specifically, look at the Enlightment… the push for rationalism… the Reformation… Individualism (It’s a biggie and is probably the biggest symptom of relativism… or actually, relativism is a symptom of individualism)
It would help to get people to understand how this mantra of relativism is nothing special, but a product of historical circumstances and certain people. Relativism is nothing but a distraction.
I wish you luck.
Have they tried it on a traffic cop?
How about this one?
“Different churches meet the needs of different people. I’m happy you’ve found a church that meets your needs. I’m happy where I am at my church.”
The major topic at hand is why one should follow the rule or law or observe manners. The interlocutor in question is a self-described “thug” who has little interest in being a member of mainstream society.
There is only one Truth, and He has a name: Jesus Christ. Therefore when it comes to teachings of the Christian faith, there are non-negotiables when it comes to what to believe.
Good luck, Lucy!
Unless he’s a family member or a boss, I think you might tell him that what works for you is to pray for thugs but not to be intimidated by them into accepting their judgment in this matter as superior to yours.
Forgive me, but this line just struck me as funny. It is a very true line. But, the way I read it the first time was (emphasis added for where I misread…)
OK, now back to the thread already in progress.
Relativism is at best problematic. People that accept relativism are not thinking logically. Their’s is a system of accomodation. Lessons in logic are the remedy, but the relativist must be willing to study and examine their own thinking.
Truth is a factual description of that which is being observed. Factual descriptions are not subject to personal whims and opinions. Personal whims and opinions can be at great variance with the facts. Opinions are like elbows…everybody’s got some, and opinions do not always match the facts.
If you put five people together and asked them all the same question that had a verifiable factually based answer, you may or may not get the correct answer from the respondents. One has to explore the possibilities that might emerge from the respondents such as the following:
–none of them give the correct answer
–some or all of them give the same wrong answer
–they all give different wrong answers
–one or more of them give partially correct answers
–the partially correct answers may or may not match each other
depending on the number of factual elements contained in the
–only one of them gives the correct answer
–more than one of them gives the correct answer
–all of them give the correct answer
Example problems can easily be devised to demonstrate these possibilites and to show that truth/factual descriptions are simply not up for grabs. Relativism is seriously flawed and is illogical. Peter Kreeft has written a book called The Refutation of Moral Relativism. This book totally shreds the case for moral relativism. I highly recommend it.
If the discussion is about the truth of Jesus (or His Church), you might respond with “What’s heaven for me might not be heaven for you…” :eek:
Or even “what’s true for you might not be true for God/Jesus” :bigyikes:
And if that didn’t work, I’d probably just give them an “atomic wedgie” and run for my life. At least that seemed to work when I was in high school…
It depends on the context. “What works for you might not work for me” applies to a great many areas of life:
*]medical prescription - penicillin is fine for those who have no allergy to it; it would be negligent in the extreme to show one’s freedom from “relativism” by giving it to those whom it would harm.
*]people’s state of life (are nuns expected to “be fruitful, and multiply” ? - if they do behave as though they were wives & not nuns, they aren’t rewarded, but punished. That’s not “tired”, nor “relativistic”: it’s common sense)
*]It might be true for some that they can reach New York by walking - but it’s not true for anyone who does not live on the American continent.
*]It might be true for those who are colour-blind that red & green are easily confused - but for those of us who are not, it’s not.
*]Not every one has the same temptations, or the same sins, or the same opportunities for good & evil - which is why a priest hearing a confession does not give a child the sort of penance he might give to a serial murderer.[/LIST]- to name just a few. Moral principles tend to be more stable than how they are understood & applied - the problems seem to arise with their application; which often depends on how they are intepreted;which in turn implies questions about one’s **priorities **. It’s easy to say that lying is absolutely & always wrong: St. Augustine, John Wesley, & Immanuel Kant agreed on that: but whether it is a lie to mislead a would-be murderer who is searching for his intended victim, is not so clear. Which raises questions about what the content of a lie is, that makes it a lie. ##