Thursday, September 8, 2011

Is objective truth possible?

The question of objective truth is always a matter of philosophical pursuit and it constantly throws handful of questions before us which don’t have any inclusive answers.   What are objectivity and subjectivity?  Is our learning subjective or objective? Can human intellect comprehend objective truth? 

Before going into what are objective and subjective truth let us first understand what is subjectivity and what is objectivity. There is always a reasoning ‘I’ within me. This ‘I’ is the subject of knowing something.
As English grammar has subject and predicate (object) in a sentence; for example; I love a girl, in this sentence ‘I’ becomes the subject, doer of the action, and girl becomes the object. The moment someone looks at us we are reduced to a mere object, an object in his or her eyes. Therefore, we can be both subject and object.

Apparently, we have a red rose flower in our garden, can we objectively understand the red rose flower? The process of knowing the red rose is already biased because we have an already set knowledge about the red rose flower through our socialization. So with our intellectual capacity we keenly observe the red rose and try understanding the flower in its actuality and our knowing is limited within our subjectivity. Perhaps the red rose has to covey so many truth (attributes) about itself to us, but it always remains untold.  

Probably it can disclose its own subjectivity objectively to us. Objectivity is nothing but knowing something as it is. Objective truth means I, the subject, trying to understand a thing as it is, which is uninfluenced by our thought or experience or feelings. We are always working within our subjective world which is constituted of our custom, culture, religion, tradition, superstitions, inhibitions and our intellectual level.

We cant perceive the world as it truly is; we infer it with our sensory perception and sort out it with the already stored images in our brain. When we talk about objective reality, we are talking about the world that's really out there, which is unfiltered, outside our mind. Our senses can fool or mislead us, (illusion and hallucination) and our brain can screw up and misinterpret what we are perceiving. Thus, often we get a false impression of what we are trying to perceive in the world.

We, the subject, are embodied with intellectual capacity and we can learn about anything and everything within the discourse of our intellectual capacity with is coupled with custom, culture, religion, tradition, superstitions, inhibitions. So we can know anything within our subjectivity and our discernment is subjective.

So we are forced to arrive at a conclusion that objective truth is not possible and our knowing is all about subjective. I, the subject, can know an object within my subjectivity and every knowing process happens with in the frame of my subjectivity.

1 comment:

  1. everything in this world is relative...and there is no absolute truth or's all about our perception and interpretation of what we see and come to know about,out there in the world.and it differ with people, place, culture, time, religion etc...and when it comes to this point, the subjective "I" and objectivity,I would like to remember Albert Einstein who had worked on "relativity".