Jul 4, 2011

63 Define truth, reality, morals without God

Believer asks: How can you define "reality," "truth," "moral wrong," "faith" or "knowledge" without invoking God?

Skeptic replies: Well, all of those words have relative meanings. So with that in mind, one way to define them is as follows:

1) Reality: My experiences while I'm awake. They make up my personal reality even if I misapprehend some things about them. Thus reality. 

2) Truth: Well, let's say I live on Maple Street. It's a fact. Thus truth. 

3) Moral wrong: It's has to do with my personal point of view. Let's say I dislike the cruel treatment people receive from others. According to my personal view, moral wrong is going on. My point of view is key but it’s relative. Thus moral wrong.

4) Faith: Let's say I have confidence in the mail carrier, Newman. I trust him or take for granted he will keep delivering the mail like before. I put faith in him but he isn’t on my mind very much at all. I expect he'll do his thing, having casual faith in Newman. Thus faith.  

5) Knowledge: One example is two plus two equals four. Another is the history fact that Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492. Another is that every time I ask Linda out, she gives me a dirty look. That’s knowledge. 

Recap: Those words have relative (subjective) meanings. So I defined them in relative terms. And I didn't have to evoke God.

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