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objsubj

There is a distinction between ‘propositions’ and ‘judgments’ about the way things really are and how people think or feel about them. The ‘objective truth’ is no more than the assumed precise analysis of the nature of things. Objective claims are presumed to be entirely ‘independent’ of the merely personal concerns reflected in subjective expressions.

 

However, it is difficult to draw the distinction precisely.

 

The legitimacy of this distinction, between objective and subjective, is open to serious question, since it is unclear whether, or how, any knowing subject can achieve genuine objectivity. Nevertheless, because objective truth is supposed to carry undeniable persuasive force, exaggerated claims of objectivity have often been used as the tools of science.

 

This is not the case for philosophy.

 

Philosophy is more concerned with definitions of consciousness, the phenomenon of the mind, intentionality and ‘the truth according to the self.’

 

These, and many other elements of philosophy, raise questions such as; “Is what I ‘know’ the same thing as what you ‘know’?”

 

If we are looking at a specific color do I see the same color as you see? Maybe my parents were color blind and they taught me that ‘pastel green’ should be called ‘pastel blue.’ The colors are just a few hues apart. That does not take a leap of faith to believe that two people can be looking at the same shirt and have a difference of opinion on what the true color is.

 

Let us take this knowledge, or truth, to the extreme. You may ‘know’ that “The Descent of Man” is the Darwinian theses that we have evolved and our close cousins are primates. Objective science has proven this ‘truth’ with DNA.

 

On the other hand theological studies have proven an opposite ‘truth’ with “The Bible” which includes the old and new testaments.

 

That leaves us with a looming question; “Who is correct, the objective truth or the subjective truth.” Remember, we couldn’t agree on the ‘fact’ of a simple color so how are we to agree on something as grand as when the humans appeared?

 

Possibly it isn’t even a ‘truth’ question; maybe it is an ‘ego’ question. If so, then it is truly subjective because each of us possess our individual egos.

 

Let us take a close look at a mathematical ‘truth.’ Surely that has to be an objective truth.

 

I am speaking of the definition of the series called ‘factorials.’ The symbol for factorial is written as      And this series is defined by the number following the symbol. For example;

 

!1 = 1

!2 = 2    (1 x 2 = 2)

!3 = 6    (1 x 2 x 3 = 6)

!4 = 24   (1 x 2 x 3 x 4 = 24)

 

So     !n       is defined by the series of numbers from 1 to n when multiplied together.

 

Simple enough; RIGHT?

 

WRONG!

 

How about      !0       ?

 

That would be either ‘undefined’ or simply 0.

 

But then the definition of      !       doesn’t hold true for the case;

 

!1 = 0 x 1        because that would mean all    !s      are either ‘undefined’ or equal to 0.

 

It also doesn’t hold true for many other mathematical series or equations.

 

So that supposedly mathematical definition is ‘false’ unless all the mathematicians in the entire world agreed that    !0 = 1     .   

 

Which is exactly what has happened!

 

It is not an ‘objective truth’ it is simply an accepted ‘convention’ just like the convention that makes our USB port signals and wires agree ‘by convention’ or anything else that was agreed to by committee such as what type of screws should be used in automobiles.

 

So    !0     was designed by committee and committee decisions are always far from the truth; which, for any of us who has ever sat on a committee, know all too well.

 

Wait a minute!  I just think I invented an axiom;

 

“If committee decisions are false and !0=1, then all objective truths are false.”

 

That is surely an objectively false axiom. However, at this point, even I am not sure.

 

So what have I proven?

 

There is a very fine line between objective and subjective truths. It is almost like the fine line between sanity and insanity; hard to tell except in extreme cases.

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