What is the truth? It's a question (like all "simple" open-ended questions) that has been on humanity's mind for quite some time, and hasn't really ceased its unending pursuit —and the problem is we conflate truth with knowing, and to know something requires (for most of us) a reliance on words. This is the first falsehood.
A word that describes something can never be the truth because it is not specific enough. A word, by being a word, is always a generalization. We when say "love" we reference all the different experiences that seem to be close to our concept of what love is —that we have different concepts on what love is, is of course, why we learn in active conversation why it is good to "define" your words for the sake of communication. The second falsehood.
Defining words quickly leads to language relativism, which essentially defeats the purpose of language. The reason why there are standard definitions of words is because it supposedly allows a universal (based on language) understanding between two people, but as soon as we start defining love and friendship to be whatever we like for the sake of communication, we actually end up doing the opposite. We have to take the standard definition of love and friendship if we want to be capable of communicating with our fellow human beings, otherwise we might as well invent a separate language that's unique to only us, we might as well go back to grunting and pointing.
Connect the dots...
- The Pursuit of Truth is a misnomer; we can't pursue absolute Truth through words / knowledge, but that's what we try to do.
- The reason being words are generalizations, and the ideal of Truth is for our concept of reality to be 100% accurate; a generalization is never 100% accurate because it's a generalization... knowledge, which is formed by words, is therefore also a generalization and therefore inaccurate.
- Our quest for Truth is really just an inherent selfishness of worldview as demonstrated when people redefine words in conversation for the sake of communication... the point of language is to not have to redefine the words so that everyone is on the same page.
So why do we care about Truth anyways? Well, it's an idol —akin to God, but some people don't like believing in God, but they want to believe in something, so they believe in Truth. The 21st century mind may be more receptive to Truth simply because it feels more rationale or otherwise "akin to the times" —to worship Truth is the same as worshipping God, we just change ice cream flavor preferences, that's all, but we still want ice cream, we still want (especially when we don't know what to do with ourselves) to worship something.
Here's an observation (hint: generalization): humans worship because they want to believe there is more to existence than just existence; through prayer, through the pursuit of some abstract or ideal, they believe if they prostrate themselves, they will arrive at heaven or enlightenment. They won't.
It's only possible to change existence if at first there's an acceptance of what that existence is. You have to see clearly first before advocating for a societal change —then the pursuit of an ideal may be fruitful, but not before because that ideal has to be grounded in a reality (from point A to point B). Worship is just a form of hopefulness that we'll arrive at point B either without effort or without knowing where point A is... both are logically impossible because we can only draw a line if we have both points and put in some effort to draw it... there's a natural order to things, but we like to skip them, so we remove point A and pray that if we believe in point B strong enough the line will form itself and connect with an unknown point A because we can't bear to see our actual reality. When has this ever happened? Too often, to the point that we believe through stories and testimonies that life performs miracles if we just believe, but it doesn't —that anyone can arrive from point A to point B without knowing point A or putting effort is just chance or circumstance. It's "lucky"; another way to say that the cause is "unknown", but the cause wasn't them.
Creating lines is extremely difficult, must of us can't do it because it requires knowledge of point A, point B, and the capacity to move between them in a controlled manner, and we are 1. doubtful human beings, 2. capricious human beings, 3. conflict-avoidant human beings. In other words, we have neither conviction in point A nor point B and also even if we did would likely stray from the path from point A to point B or else when met with resistance give up the pursuit: I'm speaking behaviorally —consciously, we kid ourselves by worshipping and believing we're moving closer to our goals without really moving closer at all, if, we even have personal goals in the first place.
Have I made a truthful generalization? or am I only talking about myself? Both? Neither?