Under Whose Criteria
Do You Measure Truth?
Johnny Lumgair

Graphic Rule

From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: "Johnny Lumgair"
Subject: Re: truth
Date: December 21, 2001 3:51 AM

I don't understand your question.

How can truth be the domain of any particular "who"?

Cliff Walker
Positive Atheism Magazine
Six years of service to
    people with no reason to believe

Graphic Rule

Graphic Rule

From: "Positive Atheism" <editor@positiveatheism.org>
To: "Johnny Lumgair"
Subject: Re: truth
Date: December 22, 2001 5:33 AM

I have a pretty good idea of what I mean when I speak of "truthfulness" as opposed to "falsehood," and this has worked for me over the years. There's no real mystery to it, it's all a manner of speaking. What's left is to see if what the person told me is true. Quite often, what the person told me is not important enough to even bother with whether or not it's true -- except, of course, to discern whether the person I'm dealing with is a liar, in which case, even if some of the things they tell me happen to be true, they still deserve to be treated (by me) as if everything they say is entirely meaningless. This is particularly fitting when they get caught telling me a lie about something insignificant (they weren't even doing it to con money out of me or anything like that).

The ability to tell when somebody is lying to me is a skill that I have honed quite well, and this helps. I know quite a few of the tricks. For example, if somebody lays down a trick question and I respond by asking a pointed question about the subject at hand, that person had better respond directly to the pointed question if he wants any hope of saving face. If my examiner (let's say) changes the subject or otherwise rephrases the original question without directly responding to the pointed question in my response, then I know I do well to remain alert to this person: here is somebody who bluffs by introducing confusion into the dialogue.
 

This is one reason why we discourage people from writing to us and trying to lay their religious trips on us: for some reason that I cannot begin to fathom, religious tricksters tend to be the most meticulous in this particular form of craftiness. Thus, our web page is for atheists, not theists. We have nothing to say to theists except to wish them well as fellow humans.

We have no need or desire even to satisfy the simple curiosity of sincere theists -- a rare breed, indeed -- although they're very easy to spot 'cause they're not out to lay a trap. Thus, I'll always try to oblige the sincerely curious theists the best I can.

But to debate the god-question is about as inappropriate on this Forum as comparing the merits between rugby and American football. This Forum is about the struggles of living life as members one of the most widely despised and viciously persecuted minority groups in history who, as a class, have done nothing to deserve what we endure from all sides.
 

I don't understand what you mean when you say "absolute truth." How does absoluteness even apply to something as simple as distinguishing whether somebody is trying to pull the wool over your eyes?

Again: How can truth be the domain of any particular "who"?

Cliff Walker
Positive Atheism Magazine
Six years of service to
    people with no reason to believe

Graphic Rule

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