Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Narrow Road of Truth - Part 3

By David Barnett

Today, the post-modern spirit is rampant in our schools and universities, and a new definition for ‘tolerance’ has been formed. ‘Tolerance’ now means something along the lines of, ‘If what you have stated is true for you, then who am I to say that it is wrong?’; if a thought or theory is valid in one person’s mind, it must be held by all to be valid. And hence, society’s integral principle of ‘antithesis’, which literally holds civilization together, is done away with; ‘pluralism’ has re-emerged, and is, to quote Karl Marx out of context, ‘the opium of the people’. And yet, despite its sway in the universities and its frequent usage in political addresses to win the favour of the majority, the idea of ‘pluralism’ in the realm of ‘truth’ has only and can only take root in those fields which do not have any immediate consequences on the social-structures and general management and well-being of a society. Pluralism is widely-held in the Arts and in modern Philosophy, yet it would be the height of absurdity and a great danger to the public if our engineering firms and medical practitioners functioned on the basis of there being a plurality of truths, or truth as subjective. Take the following example.

Imagine a brain-surgeon telling his patient, “The clinic down the road believes that making micro-incisions with hi-tech utensils into the skull is the most affective and risk-free method for removing brain tumours. And yes, I freely admit: all outward evidence and recorded results would suggest that there is an extraordinarily high success-rate for operations performed in such a manner. However, that method doesn’t really hold true for me. I have a background in Hinduism, and I believe that there are unique healing properties in cow dung. Hence, I’ve brought in this cow, and so rather than me operate on you and remove the tumour, I instead want you to massage cow manure into your head where you believe the pain is. Repeat this process three times a day (after a meal preferably - but it doesn’t really matter, because it’s all relative) for exactly nine months.”
As foolish as this is, this line of reasoning is being accepted and propagated in various academic fields every day. I labour this point, because although the notion of antithesis (that is, that A is not non-A) is fundamental to the survival and well-being of society and the sanity of mankind; it is a notion which is denied on many fronts, not the least of which by some people who profess Christianity as their religion, though it is the most antithetical of all the religions of the world.