Notes on truth

-People’s arguments are a part of themselves, and so we love them like our own children. This love is increased by habit, and by being able to experience the argument from inside and to take pleasure in it. This kind of love is natural and beneficial- it is a result of our natural order to truth, just as our love of high calorie foods is a result of our natural order to survival.

-Just as we are dependent on various sense powers to know truth, we are also dependent on a section of the brain that can register object permanence. Without this permanence of the known, the truth is merely what is being perceived, and man is the measure of all things. In fact, it could not even be this. Regardless of the status of our bodies, the status of our consciousness or knowledge would not rise above that of a toddler.

Truth is essentially revealed in its permanence and stability. As some known is stable and permanent, so also it is true, and vice versa. This stability is measured by the extent that something rises above mere dependence on sense, or the flux of opinion, or the flux of being something we hold as uniquely our own.

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2 Comments

  1. August 29, 2008 at 6:46 am

    Correction is a great good and a service others benefit us by, if we are humble and strong enough to accept it. Even if by it they wish us harm, it still benefits us. A greater harm would be to let an enemy persist in error.

    You mention permanence of the known, also interesting to consider the permanence of the knower, since knowledge in act is the same as the known – that mind is not at one time knowing and at another not, as Aristotle says. It rises above the strife of coming to know and rests in knowing.

  2. a thomist said,

    August 29, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    The proof you mention is one that Aquinas of course loved a great deal- I think he used it at the head of speaking about the soul in the Compendium (a book that deserves to be studied more than it is, especially on the soul).


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