When It Comes To Beliefs, Is There Such A Thing As 'The Truth'?
Society has seldom been more polarised than it is now, for example, between ‘left’ and ‘right’, and ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’ adherents, and truth is much in demand. We are all striving to be heard and, in the process, we insist on our own truths, or what we regard as the only truth that others must accept, while many people talk of wanting to know 'the truth' for themselves.
But is there such a straightforward truth that we can all subscribe to and follow blindly? There seems to be only different versions of the truth, according to individual viewpoints. That is why there is so much problem with conflicting negotiations, like in the current UK rail strike where both unions and employers cannot agree. Each party wishes for their version of what they regard as 'truth' to be recognised, but no one is prepared to acquiesce too easily, because they both want to be proved 'right'.
The only universal truth in our society is that people spend their time trying to force their reality on to others. They seldom stop to ask how they can change other people's 'truths', if they find it so difficult to change their own! Yet your reality is not mine, and mine is not yours, so how can we share a universal 'truth', unless we both make the effort to actually alter our viewpoint to accommodate each other's truth? Human interaction is a broadly competitive one, where oneupmanship seems to dwarf everything else. It means the struggle for that 'truth' becomes even more intense as everyone tries to show that they are the ones privileged to have it.
But at the heart of individual action is perception. We all perceive our lives in ways which have been influenced by our childhood, especially how we've been treated, our adult experiences, the things we value and what we reject. It means that we will only ever share anything with others on a superficial level. It is impossible to share the exact reality of someone else because their whole life journey forms that perception, while their sex, race, culture, and age regulate it. Hence why perception changes as we evolve.
Everyone is correct in their stated individual experience because it is unique to them. Each experience might share certain elements with others, but no one can make sweeping statements about another, when they are merely speaking from their own limited perception, one they are fully entitled to hold, one which might be accurate for them and how they perceive their world, but which does not speak for other worlds and deprives them of the right to impose it on others.
Trying to convince one another of each other's point is so futile because each person's experience is valid and true for them. No one has a monopoly of what life means, or how to interpret the meaning we all seek from it. We perceive, so we are, and that is the only truth and reality to which we can subscribe, unless we wish to SHARE that reality by modifying personal perceptions in some way and accepting the perception of another to either enhance, or to limit, our own.
In the end, we tend to share the ‘truth’ of those who share our values; who look like us; who show us empathy and treat us kindly; who have similar experiences that reinforce and validate our ‘truth’, and also those we most admire and wish to impress! In such situations, we are more likely to agree with, and accept, the ‘truth’ of others , even if it doesn’t quite match our own.
#truth #reality #childhood #perception #negotiation #interaction, #thefitnessbooster
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