Line in the Sand

Line in the Sand

By: Mark Anton

The student tentatively stood before the microphone and in a cavalier type of manner asked,
“…and so what are you so afraid of? That everyone will suddenly start murdering and pillaging each other just because we don’t have a book to tell us what to do?”.

He pauses for a brief moment and then asks again, but this time in a more mocking tone,
“I don’t understand, what are you so afraid of?”

The Professor slowly rises from his stool chair, calmly walks to centre stage –pensive, yet poised – and politely yet humorously replies,

“Do you lock your door at night?”

The auditorium erupts in laughter, unanimously validating the Truth everybody knew, but didn’t necessarily admit.

The scene above played out at an educational institution a few years ago. Although it may have been slightly humorous at the time, it’s reflective of a bigger issue at hand – that we are increasingly rejecting the notion of an objective and revealed Truth, rather choosing to make decisions that are often based on feelings or what we can justify to silence our conscience.
Truth, in the sense of being a transcendent anchor, is exclusive by its very nature. However, when the Truth becomes subjectified, it is no longer the truth but rather an opinion, or worse yet, a lie.
The “Truth” has been all too often and tragically traded in for “truths”, or “a truth” among many “truths”, and the contrast between them has played out throughout history over and over again, but it seems to be starker than ever before in a world that continues to embrace change at the most foundational and controversial of levels, often leaving me to question why.

I was once asked how important the Truth was to me. As I pondered this question, I thought about how the answer to this has determined to what length I am willing to seek it out, defend it and live by it. I thought about how the knowledge of Truth has not only changed my life and forever imprinted the principles by which I choose to live, but also the impact it has had on my fundamental beliefs, my morality and the very essence of who I am. The exact same thing applies on a macro-societal level, and therein lies the impact of an absolute Truth – the presence and acceptance of it has a significant and profound impact on humanity that permeates all echelons of our society.

It is why we have our courts of law, the principles that preserve intrinsic human worth and the law of our lands which have been developed over time, which have been built upon a guiding set of foundational Truths. It’s why many nations are synonymous with opportunity, equality and democracy, whilst others are rife with corruption, injustice and inequality. It’s even why some cultures will love thy neighbour, whilst others will choose to murder and pillage them.

As time has gone on, we continue to witness the incremental departure from, and acceptance of, a Truth often in the name of tolerance and advancement. In fact, the denial of its very existence has taken root in the world today, and we have even gone so far as to profess the impossibility that we can even know what the Truth is, which in turn has impacted our morality, dulled our consciences and blurred the very meaning of life as God revealed and intended it to be.

As such, we lack and deny any transcendent anchor – like a ship out at sea with no compass or reference point. There is supposedly no one, or nothing to provide the Truths that should govern life and so we are naturally left to define them ourselves, ironically feeling obliged to do so. And so humanity becomes plagued with the moral ambiguity and dilemmas that prevail today – euthanasia, abortion, same sex marriage. Even a person’s very gender and identity has become a matter of preference, and we are left with an ever growing lexicon of the definition of truth, and what constitutes a truth.

The fact of the matter is that Truth is much more than a feeling. It is timeless and beyond human manufacture. The Truth illuminates for us reality. It is ultimately the Way and the Life.

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