January 19

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Truth, Revelation, Belief, Faith, Prophets, Madness, Competition

Does truth exist? Yes, truth exists. Can we perceive truth? Never. Or can we perceive it with the greatest difficulty? Can we get glimpses every now and then? We are fallible beings and will never perceive the actual. Our senses fail, our mind makes mistakes, our feelings guide us astray. We are not omniscient.

Then how do I know truth exists? I reason this way. As my senses improve, I perceive more. Start from one point. My eyes are closed, I see nothing. Truth is blackness. Next point. I open my eyes, I see shapes and colours, truth is what I see. Next, I put on my glasses to see better. I am greeted with a panoramic scene, made up of trees and rocks. Truth has been expanded, it is no longer just shapes and colours but an actual scene. My eyes focus and become like an eagles, now I see truth clearer, I see everything within that panorama - smaller rocks, roots, other creatures. All these points are defined by a general sharpening of perception and a movement towards a greater concept of truth. I reason that as I perceive more, moving along points, Iíll eventually reach a grasp of the actuality in which I exist. The problem is, the number of points needed to reach infallibity are infinite. I can never expect to truly understand the panoramic scene before me. My eyes can open and focus, but to go further than that is impossible. The truth is an ideal Ė I feel it out there, I move towards it, but I donít believe Iíll ever hit it.

What is revelation? Moments when someone comes close to seeing actuality. Prophets who receive visions claim to see the truth. I have read that the greatest moments for scientists have come unexpected, in the bath tub, on walks, sitting under a tree. These moments are always accidental, not purposeful. It would seem that great insights cannot be pursued, but only occur when our senses and thoughts, moving without purpose or goal, stray close to actuality.

Can we believe in what we sense? No, but we must, our existence gives us no choice. We are driven by hunger and thirst, a need to survive, therefore we must create a reality in which we forage and hunt. Belief is a defining trait of us humans. Given the right circumstances, weíll believe anything. Without belief, we becomes nothing. Our reality collapses and we die. We must believe our senses. To doubt the eyes that perceive the advancing lion jeopardizes us. We can doubt our reality but to doubt our belief would be dangerous.

The great paradox. We believe in something that is false. Our reality is limited, narrow, and misguided because our ears and eyes fallible, our mind limited. How do we believe the unbelievable? Faith. Faith is the power with which man fortifies belief. We have faith that reality captures actuality. Faith in a grounded reality. Faith bridges actuality and manís created reality, the truth and our perception of the truth. It fuses them together, it glues them together. It is the force that allows us to believe the unbelievable. It is the force that prevents us from questioning ourselves and others. It allows us to ignore the fact that our realities are never real. Without faith in our senses and judgement we would not survive to see a new day.

Destruction of faith. New insights destroy faith. Curiosity destroys faith. Changes in actuality destroy faith. Cataclysmic events destroy faith. Prophets and revolutionaries destroy faith. Strangers with strong faith destroy the faith of the weak. What happens when faith is weakened or destroyed? Then our belief falters. We question our reality. Our senses stray past the borders of our world. Cracks appear in the lens we use to see actuality. We see other realities, more accurate versions of actuality, maybe less accurate versions of actuality. We compare them to our own reality till eventually wíre no longer capable of believing in our old reality.

Prophets and divine revelation. With the destruction of faith, reality falters and dies. A vacuum occurs, in which man replaces his old reality with the new reality. If it was a prophet who inspired the man to peek past his reality, doubt it, and destroy it, the man will replace his old reality with the reality of the prophet. Prophets are creators and destroyers. They create their own reality, often based on divine revelation. Then they destroy the realities of others.
There is a double benefit to being inspired by divine revelation. It benefits the prophet: the prophetís faith is based on his direct connection with God, therefore his reality is made strong and impervious in his own mind. He himself believes it and this makes him strong. The second: divine revelation affects the crowd, nothing is more awe inspiring to the crowd than Godliness. Prophets claim a connection with God. God is truth, the Prophet his portal. Through the prophet, the normal see the truth. This is how prophets attract a following and extend their reality into the realities of others, so that it becomes commonly accepted.

Madness. Anyone who has had their reality torn down quickly adopts another reality. One cannot exist in a vacuum. We must have a concept of actuality, we must be able to function. Madness occurs when the development of the new reality is trunctuated. The madmanís reality is non-existent, or barely developed. It may be a throw back, a return to childhood. It may be coma-like. It may be a bizarre construction. It is a return to innocence, a departure away from omniscience. All realities are by their nature erroneous, but the madmanís does not even make an effort to apprehend actuality, it is alone and individual.

What collective realities might look like.

Collective realities: These realities are shared, large, and connect many people. The various religions are an example. Ideologies are too. They are universal realities formalized and set out through rules, norms, and group think. Anyone may subscribe to these realities, and most people do. They are easy to believe in. As more people subscribe to a collective reality, oneís faith in the reality is reinforced by the faith of other believers. One feels satisfied conforming to a collective reality. One is able to connect with others. One does not have to spend the energy to create a reality of oneís own. Furthermore, when a collective reality becomes rabidly popular it may be detrimental not to join it. You don't want to be a heretic when they're being burnt at the stake.

Competing realities: The loner, fearful for his life, subscribes to the rapidly popular reality. Realities are antagonistic by nature, they compete for the beliefs of the many. This is how reality is perpetuated, through the mouths and hands of those who believe in it. The collective reality targets the realities of the outsiders by making every attempt to destroy these realities. They may do so actively Ė killing, brainwashing. They may do so passively Ė conformity, pressure, exile, or denunciation.

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