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Objective Truth

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What conditions need to be satisfied for something to be objectively true? For something to be objectively true - does that mean it holds irrefutable rational evidence?

What are the ultimate objective truths?

One that I commonly use as an example is:

- Human beings must have oxygen and food to survive. We will die without them.

Just looking for thoughts, comments and hopefully a pointing to a good source, book, excerpt etc.

Thanks!

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Feltini, there is only one truth. "subjective" truth is not in accordance with reality, objectively.

When I speak of truth, the word truth presupposes that it is objective. Make sense?

It depends on your use of "subjective". Truth can be subjective if it is completely subject-related. "I see the green chair.". Of course, if you simply are conflating the terms 'objective' and 'true', then clearly that doesn't hold. I don't think such a conflation is proper, though.

Also, contextual truth; how is that NOT objective truth?

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Yeah, I've read all of those quotes and books. That is about "truth" not "objective truth".

"Objective truth" is redundant. The appearance of "objective" emphasizes the method used to reach the thought in question. "Contextual truth" is also redundant, whatever is true is true for a reason or multiple reasons which is the context. "Subjective truth" is a contradiction in terms. There is no point in even considering the issue of truth unless and until it occurs to one that a thought and what a thought refers are different things and that the thought should conform itself to the thing referred to; disregarding that relation and the thing referred to is the subjective method and it makes truth both impossible and unnecessary.

I do not know what is meant by "ultimate truths". There are first truths, but no starting place in knowledge is necessarily first for everyone. There are primaries, facts that are unanalyzable to find why they are true, things like "existence exists" and "existence is identity". People do need air and food, but neither is necessarily the first thought one has and neither is unanalyzable in the sense of a primary.

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I am looking for a more comprehensive assessment of objective truth from the objectivist point of view. Maybe it doesn't offer one?

I understand how the phrase "objective truth" can be redundant.

How can their be no objective truths? Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Objectivist Epistemology hinge on "A is A". Isn't this objectively true?

I've always sought to find objective truth, and what I mean by this is truth that is objective of the mind, of interpretation of perception - therefore making it objectively true. This can tie into "A is A", I think, as in it is what it is.

Does this make sense?

I don't think you can claim truth simply as facts corresponding with reality, or "A is A" - a bit vague and not to hard to skirt around.

Edited by feltini
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Feltini, are you presupposing that there are different kinds of truth? Grames explained that the qualifiers that accord with truth are simply to indicate the method by which one comes to know what the truth is. Those qualifiers are not categorical headings for different kinds of truth. There is no 'kind' or 'type' of truth. There is truth, and there is falsity. There is nothing in between, except possibly deliberate evasion, or evasion due to incompetence, and potentially ignorance. But there are no degrees of truth, no categories of truth, and no versions of truth.

Truth is truth and reality is reality. There is no need to search for it; it is always there and available. What you can do to ascertain it is to sharpen your reasoning faculty, deliberately focus and stop indulging in evasion techniques such as supposing that truth requires a search, and to be found. It simply is: you may choose to recognise it, or not, but it is you and your actions that require qualification, not the other way around.

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I am looking for a more comprehensive assessment of objective truth from the objectivist point of view. Maybe it doesn't offer one?

...

How can their be no objective truths? Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Objectivist Epistemology hinge on "A is A". Isn't this objectively true?

You were asking about ultimate truth. Now somehow you've got it in your head that I and others have denied there are objective truths, which is not correct.

Now I can infer that you think ultimate truth and objective truth are related somehow, but I still don't know what you mean.

"A comprehensive assessment of objective truth from the objectivist point of view" would be the entire Objectivist epistemology. Could you narrow that down a bit? For example, a comprehensive Objectivist defense of the necessary validity of the senses is offered by David Kelley's book The Evidence of the Senses. Ayn Rand offers an account of objective concept formation in Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology. Other aspects of epistemology such as contextuality, certainty, arbitrariness, the spiral theory of knowledge, the unity of knowledge are either found in Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand or scattered about in Dr. Peikoff's various audio-only lecture courses. When you ask for everything known about truth, that is just too much of a burden to foist on responders.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've always sought to find objective truth, and what I mean by this is truth that is objective of the mind, of interpretation of perception - therefore making it objectively true. This can tie into "A is A", I think, as in it is what it is.

I think, the answer you are searching for is far simpler than you think. If by the term 'ultimate truth' you are referring to the one basic, absolute, and final truth; the one truth that all other truths can be traced back to then, in fact, you have already given what I consider to be the 'ultimate truth': A is A or reality exists. There can't be anything more basic than that. So, going along with that train of thought, an 'objective truth' is anything that exists in reality. We, as humans, interpret reality by means of our mind, rational thought, and by extension, our five senses. So an 'objective truth', or something that exists in reality is anything that one can experience with his senses, and rationally process with his mind.

To give an example: I hold an object in my hands. I can feel it with hands, and see it with my eyes. Therefore it is an objective truth that I do indeed hold an object in my hands. When bitten has a certain taste and odor, and once digested provides my body with sustenance. Therefore (assuming I don't die or have an allergic reaction after consuming it) it is an objective truth that this object is food and that it is good to eat.

The color or name of this object are (as I understand it) examples of 'subjective truths'. I do not think, as Grames does, that 'subjective truth' is a contradiction. Subjectivity is simply each individual's perspective on the nature of reality. For instance, I might look at at the aforementioned object and see the color red, however a color blind person may look at the same object and see the color gray. We both see the same object, our perspective of it does not change the nature of the object itself and so, my calling this object red is a 'subjective truth'. Similarly, a name is an arbitrary string of letters that we assign to this object for the purpose of communication. The English language calls this object 'an apple', but the Spanish language calls this object 'una manzana'. The words for this object are different, yet that difference does not change the nature of the object itself.

Where subjectivity enters dangerous territory is when one attempts to call a subjective truth an objective truth. For instance if I were to say to someone from Spain that this object is not 'una manaza' it is in fact an apple. Or if I were to say to a color blind person that the color he sees is in fact red when he sees gray. The fallacy here is the assumption that "I see reality for what it really is and you do not. What I see is right, and what you see is wrong." This is, of course, a very simplistic example, but I think it illustrates my point.

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