- Phillip Beaver
- Baton Rouge, LA
- United States
This conversation is closed.
Individually possessing the truth seems unworthy: understanding seems a nobler personal objective.
I once thought that by mastering the Word of God—studying the truth according to the Bible—my life would become its best. As time passed, the truth seemed unreachable: understanding became attractive.
For a trite example of understanding, everybody knows the sun doesn’t rise: Earth’s axial rotation reveals the sun in the morning and hides it in the evening. Yet, who’d debate Annie’s, “the sun’ll come up . . . tomorrow.”
It seems there are two quests for understanding: humankind’s ultimate quest and the individual’s lifetime quest. Humankind’s evolution involves over 100 billion humans and spans millions of years. Communications evolved—from motions; to grunts; to symbols; to language; to writing; to the world-wide web—perhaps during a million years. Considerations from before seem manifest in us. Yet humankind seems far from psychological maturity.
Society celebrates chronological age, but not psychological maturity. A person can enlist in armed services and vote at age 18; at age 21 legally consume alcohol in some societies; at age 25 enjoy cheaper auto insurance; and at age 63-68, retire. Age is rewarded, but almost no one promotes psychological maturity.
Quoting Professor Orlando Patterson, “Psychologically the ultimate human condition is to be liberated from all internal and external constraints in one's desire to realize one's self." We owe it to ourselves to want psychological maturity—to discover our preferences—to discover ourselves, understanding that the truth seems approachable yet perhaps unattainable.
Since we share uncertainty, we could understand each other, accepting that the truth knows no favorites.
General revision for clarification: 1/24/2012. See original statements, below.