Updated: Oct 26, 2019
Maybe you've heard the story by now about the blind men and the elephant? A group of blind "wise" men, who've never encountered an elephant before, are trying to explain what it is like? Then they proceed to touch the elephant in various places: the tail, the trunk, the leg, and so on. Because of their different points of reference, they cannot reach an agreement on what an elephant exactly is. The reader soon understands the goal of such a story is to convince us that we can all be right and accurate about who or what God is. It just depends on our point of view... right?
Wrong. Very wrong.
Funny how easy it is to fall for such a story. The readers of this story often pass by one very important element: we know that the creature in question is, in fact, an elephant. The truth has been communicated to us by the writer and we see the error in the blind wise men relying on their senses and past experiences alone. We shouldn't be wowed by these "wise" men. We should pity them.
Belief and Truth
Do your beliefs on a particular topic make it true simply because you believe it? Have you ever been wrong about something you truly thought was right? The answer to that is obvious if we're going to be honest. In Koukl's, The Story of Reality, he goes one step further,
Since believing something can’t make it true (otherwise there’d be no difference between believe and make-believe), it makes no sense calling any belief a 'truth' as if they were the same thing. #GregKoukl #TheStoryOfReality
How has our world become so comfortable with such a ridiculous way to view reality? Why are we so afraid of calling something out that isn't true? Perhaps we simply don't realize how dangerous it is to build a foundation on top of a contradiction. What's more is, we then blame "god" for how confusing life and reality is. I can just see God (the real one) shaking his head, patiently waiting for someone to acknowledge the truth about him and the reality of him. He's saying,
Come now, let us reason together... #Isaiah
True or False
We've got to address this honestly and openly if we're ever going to grow as a culture. You can't build on multiple foundations and then be surprised when cracks appear. (You know, the kind that cause you to trip and embarrass yourself.) These foundations will always pull away from each other. Koukl states later,
Confused talking leads to confused thinking. Some beliefs are true. Others are not. The difference matters. If a story is not accurate to reality, it’s not any kind of truth at all, so it can never be my truth or your truth, even though we may believe it. It can only be our delusion, or our mistake, or our error, or whatever else you may want to call it. But it could never be our 'truth.' #GregKoukl #TheStoryOfReality
Maybe it's time. It's time to call the proverbial "spade a spade". Are you willing to put your beliefs to the test? Willing to stop holding them privately? Do you want to know why we do this?
The real reason we've bought into this whole "private belief" thing? It's because we don't even really know why we believe what it is we say we believe! Rare is it to find a person who's actually thought through their beliefs. Of course then, we're afraid to say anything about them because someone might make fun of our ideas. So we hold them dear, while not knowing if all we're holding onto is air. So get out there, talk to someone who believes differently. Let them share their views safely and expect the same in return. Then, be honest about the strengths and weaknesses. Again, "Come now, let us reason together..."
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