Thursday, February 12, 2009

An Exploration of Truth, Honesty, Wisdom and Scooter

I like words, I mean, I've been playing around with them for years.

Insomnia has kicked in (making me wonder if Scott is up tonight too) and so, I'm laying in bed, wishing for sleep but, instead, thinking about words, and the eyes I looked into tonight....That's another story and not for the readers of this blog.

Truth is a word I've held in high esteem my whole life so, laying in bed, wishing for sleep but unable to achieve it, I wondered about the definition of truth. It has gotten so relative, you know? It means different things to different people these days, in fact (or truth) many words mean different things to different people these days.

I have a set of books called the "Little Books of Virtue," while truth isn't among the titles, honesty is, and in my mind honesty and truth are very much alike, or are they?

The "Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary" tells us, in part, that truth is:

1. b: sincerity in action, character and utterance
2. a: the state of being the case: fact: the body of real things, events and reality: a transcendent, fundamental or spiritual reality; b: a judgment, proposition or idea that is true or accepted as true; c: the body of true statements and propositions, and:
3. c: fidelity to an original or to a standard.

Honesty, it says, in part, is:

2. a: fairness and straightforwardness of conduct; b: adherence to the facts: sincerity

Truth is not listed as a synonym of honesty and honesty doesn't appear to be a synonym of truth. You can certainly be fair, straightforward and sincere, in all honesty, without having your convictions based in truth, it would seem, yet, they remain somehow inextricably intertwined in my own mind.

The cover of my little book of virtue on honesty has the picture of a boyscout at salute. The definition of honesty on the cover reads:

hon es sty n: free from deception : UPRIGHT, JUST

Maybe they just simply aren't the same thing but, here's what I think: Honesty, when coupled with truth, create the subject of another among my little books of virtue. That topic is wisdom, and according to that same online dictionary, wisdom has a lot to do with common sense.

Okay, so now that we've gotten to common sense, I have a question:

Is it common sense (or wisdom) to sleep with a flatulent Boston Terrier?

I'm just askin'.

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2 comments:

Jack said...

Truth has never been fully understood. The great philosophers of the world have debated the meaning of truth (and the relative nature of truth) for thousands of years. It's nothing new to ponder its meaning.

It's a wonderful exercise to contemplate it. Are there universal truths? Is there such a thing as absolute truth, or is truth understood only from the perspective (and prior experience) of the person examining it?

How do we really know? Wonderful stuff. I enjoyed my college philosophy class.

Anonymous said...

If it is true that your boston terrier stinks, then it would be wise to throw him/her out of bed. Ha. One of my favorite blogs, Jackie.