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“Truth” is the word we use to distance ourselves from anything that could more legitimately be labelled truth

To date, the enterprise of thinking has moved us radically away from understanding anything.”
Terence McKenna, Psychedelic Salon podcast

Terence is a genius freak.

He will raise your intelligence to another level if you are ready for it, beyond the illusion that we can make statements that are either true or false.

All truths are only half truths at best.  It was a mathematician who said that!

How we decided that sounds we make with our mouth can somehow correlate to a reality beyond the perception of our senses is beyond my comprehension. “Truth” is simply something that resonates in our body in a certain way. Historically this has always been myth. I believe we used to have a healthy understanding that “truth” is a good myth. Today we seem to marginalise myth as primitive and give our modern myths great names like Science, and claim that they are True cos they have been Proven. It is simply a continuation of the exact illusion religion perpetuated at its worst.

Agreed brother. I have often been at ends with those that rationalise their dogmas as “scientific truths” when the scientific method says that all possibilities must be considered and even when “proven” are only really probabilistic assumptions.

Pretty mind boggling to think how well refined the human brain is to be able to decode multiple sensory fields. “Never let the truth get in the way of a good story.”

Never let reality get in the way of a good trip.”

I reckon truth is real and always will be, it's love/God/the original vibration, the absolute. It is our minds that are only capable of grasping a few aspects at a time. Which is why people say there are many truths, or truth depends on perspective.

To insist that science prove the nonexistence of something is endless and silly, especially if it doesn't exist. Remember science serves us pretty well most of the time.

Science is theoretically a great way of looking at the world. The problem with science is that even theoretically it is built upon a culture of dogma, where the truth was handed down to the masses from the authority, The Church, The State, Science. This is why science is so reactionary against religion; Dorkins, for example, one of the leading science writers in the world, writing a fuck-you-religion book. In reality, science is compromised by a lot of petty people with their petty little ideologies, trying to prove what they think they already know about the world, a perspective often completely culturally-sanctioned. And today, science is increasingly being commissioned by institutions to support the "facts" they need to justify their financial gains. This is well-documented in Bad Pharma by Ben Goldacre, how drug companies fund and control all the “scientific” tests utilised to prove that their drugs are safe so they can get them out on the market as soon as possible, regardless of their efficacy or safety.

As Mark suggests, reality is real, we assume. We don't really know, but it seems likely that their is a real reality out there. However, all we have is our perception. There are theories of perception that include more than five senses, but ultimately, the only source of information we have on the physical world in which we exist physically, are the physical senses of our physical bodies. Everything else is rumour and speculation; and anybody who is trying to convince you otherwise is trying to convince you of something.

The only reason we can talk about the possibility of “Truth” existing or “God” existing is because we have words for these concepts. God definitely exists. God is a character in a myth, in some cases. God is a word we use to describe an experience, in other cases. In fact, “God” is a word we project onto a myriad of confusing and complex experiences. “Ghost”, “alien” and “illuminati” are also words that we project onto a hugely diverse range of experiences, simply because we don't have a complex vocabulary to talk about these things.

Contemplating the possible utility of the word “truth” pointing to something in the reality I experience, I would consider that, rather than guaranteeing for me that something “exists” in “reality”, “truth” is an experience of resonance in the body. My body is my only source of information about this world we share, so when I feel this resonance in my body, this “yes”, I call this “truth”. I could get this feeling equally from a drama film as a documentary, from a conversation as a scientific discovery, from some wild theory of Terence McKenna or from some simple rational humanistic assertion.

Ben considers science serves us most of the time, Terence McKenna would suggest that this is only because science makes us nice toys. I definitely concede that religion did not bring us iphones.

By that reckoning, truth is intuition, and I agree. But don't shoot the messenger: science is simply a vessel by which we enhance our senses to explore the universe. It is not its triumphs or travesties. Iphones, nukes and dodgey pharma is human abuse of science.

Sure we each perceive reality differently, and its fun to pretend that this could be the Matrix or the underbelly of a cosmic squid, but unless you're high or ill, we disregard that in favour of evidence and common consensus. Sometimes your intuition fails you, and a group of eyes swear something is majestic, but science enhances that intuition and hey presto! Rainbows are just water, not magic. I heard a good phrase last night that I can apply here, “Even bullshit is high in fibre.” Be open minded, but keep your feet on the ground.

Science is a field of study, and the language and body of infomation constructed from it. Science doesn't hand down truth, or dogma or rules on how to live and treat people. The Church does impose dogma or rules on how to live and treat people. The State does also. Science does not, but some scientists do or the scientific community does at times. To me it's a real shame the subject of science is tarnished by the way it is used by some. I think it should be treated and thought of as what it is, and kept about information gathering and verifying, kept impartial. I really think some scientists use of it as a weapon against Christianity and Islam are detrimental to the subject's repute. It's like using a nuke to blow up a performance of Hamlet. It certainly is good for the destruction of religion, but I do think to use it in a serious manner is overkill and really just to satisfy the feelings of vengence against religion.

The miserable little child in me that spent 7+ hours per week in church meetings and Bible studies, forced to sit still and silent when I just wanted to draw and play and read something other than the Bible; that had to pray at least 7 times a day; that had to carry a card that said I was not allowed a blood transfusion, that had to be ready to say I was happy to die rather than have one; that never had a birthday celebration; that wasn't allowed a hot cross bun while all the other kids in class had them and I was hungry and had to pray for them cos damn those buns were the work of Satan; that was told spiky hair was demonic, that having long hair was too; that was taught Satan was everywhere in everyone always trying to attack me and take over my body and mind, even second hand purchases had to be prayed over in case they were posessed by Satan; that gay people were sick disgusting abominations that deserved to be punished and the gleefully told story of Sodom and Gomorrah; that anyone who isn't in my religion is a potential threat, a sinner, unclean, wrong and to be avoided; the fear of life that had me waking from nightmares everynight sometimes twice or more, often pissing my bed from fear, even seeing or feeling Satan trying to get to me after I woke; the sad, miserable, terrified child in me loves Dawkins, he is my hero for what he does. However, thats the little child in me. Understand it's not impartial science, it's personal.

I feel hesitant to challenge such a personal visceral account of the violence of religion.

First of all, I don't believe Science exists outside of what we say about it and how we practice it. Just like I don't believe God exists outside of our images of it and how we use it to relate to one another. So when I talk about science, I am not talking about some truth-encompassing perfect concept that we humans, in our imperfection, can only approximate. I am talking about the actual practice of science, how it is practised in our world, in our time.

The main problem I have with what science is becoming in our cultural world, is that it carries the delusion directly from religion: that sounds we make with our mouths, and transliterations of these sounds, can somehow correlate to an objective reality. Language is a complex system of symbols that we place significance on, that we share understandings of, that exist culturally, not naturally. We can refer to natural phenomena with language, but we cannot replicate it or contain it, or capture every perceptual angle for an objective view outside of our limited ability to interpret from our own point-of-view.

The way religion sought to control us with its dogma, claimed to be “ true” , is exactly the way government now controls us. It has created an unreadable literature called The Law that is supposedly real because it has been spoken into existence by those who have been ordained by Democracy.

The collapse of religion does not herald the liberation of humankind from dogma. It persists unchallenged to this day, only it has changed form. Just like Roman Paganism seamlessly became Roman Catholicism, there is a continuity today between the Christian dogmas that we have struggled with for generations and the dogmas of Government, Industy, Ownership, racial and political superiority that continue to oppress us. As long as science is claimed to be “ true” and used to justify anything, good or bad, it perpetuates this illusion, this confusion of language, the dogma inherent in the way we speak from day to day.

If we cannot become aware of how we hypnotise ourselves and each other with our language, we can never overcome it to experience the beauty and peace of the real world, where we can live together in harmony with all life on this planet.

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