Is Truth Relative?

The truth.

We hear these two little words quite often. Two very important little words they are too. There are all types of truths and many of us spend our lives seeking truth.

I once wrote, and indeed use it on my Facebook page, that the older I get the less I think I know about anything. Another way to say this would be that the older I get, the less I am certain of any truth – at least in the absolute sense. I don’t know what I am, nor what my purpose is. I don’t know what the Universe is nor its purpose – if there even is one. If there was, would I comprehend? These are the questions that I ask and the answers I seek in vain. Perhaps we all do?

In recent years, due mostly to social media, I have come to understand that people do not share truth rather they all have their own versions of it. For conspiracy theorists, as one extreme, there is version of the truth and I think for religious zealots who will happily blow themselves and others up, there plainly is a version of the truth too. I think people mostly see what they want to see and are blind to the broader truth.


I often wonder if, in fact, people’s truths are reality. What if we all shared a framework of a Universe in which multiple shades of overlapping reality were possible depending on the observer’s outlook? In fact, there are a lot of much brighter people than me in the scientific community who suggest that we live in a hologram or computer program. The substrate of this hologram is created by the observer’s expectations and thoughts. Yes, you have heard it from me before – we create our own reality. What I am saying is that truth, if there truly is any such thing, is part of our expectations and mindset. It is therefore surely something we ourselves create and why could it not be that our truths are all true to some degree because we make them so? Perhaps there isn’t one reality here but a multitude of marginally overlapping realities that we are cognisant of depending on how we wish to see the world?

What this would mean is that the conspiracy theorist is right and so am I when I think he is nuts for seeing conspiracy everywhere.

It would also mean that how I think and how I chose to see things is critically important. The ‘Know thyself’ aspect of magic and the seeking of balance then becomes a compass that points to truth – perhaps absolute truth. If we never understand ourselves and never perceive balance then truth is always relative and relative only to us. The magician then is a true seeker of truth as opposed to the religious person who is essentially setting their compass to point to someone else’s version of the truth so that it becomes a shared but still relative, truth.

These ponderings made me check out where the word truth actually comes from. I wasn’t surprised to learn that the word TRUTH derives from the word true. In turn the word true originates from the proto-German for having good faith. To quote from Wikipedia “thus, ‘truth’ involves both the quality of “faithfulness, fidelity, loyalty, sincerity, veracity”,[5] and that of “agreement with fact or reality”, in Anglo-Saxon expressed by sōþ (Modern English sooth)”.

I rest my case.

For those who may be interested. This is a derivation of the theme I explore in my novel The Last Observer available from all good online book stores.

Leave a Reply