Our education system

A cry for better education – real education – not exam cramming!

Tantalizing Thoughts

As my class X Board Examinations are approaching, I often see people around me discussing about how they can get good marks in these examinations. No one talks about what they have actually learnt. All they care about is good grades.When I ask my classmates who scored decently in previous year’s examinations any question from the previous year’s syllabus they are seldom able to answer it. I blame such behaviour of students on our education system.

I say this because since the time we have started going to schools, all they teach us is that good grades are of utmost importance. They don’t teach the students to think diffrently, innovate and explore new things. All what they tell us to do is copy what is written on the board, mug up the entire syllabi and vomit what you have memorised on your answer sheet. Our education system solely focuses on…

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84 thoughts on “Our education system

  1. While going to school, learning and completing assignments, you can still think for yourself respectfully. In life, we all learn and face challenges. In a university, I learned to “hear” what my professors were teaching, and whether I agreed or disagreed, I knew the reason why, so I received a quality education. I learned to understand. Whether in school, working, taking on hobbies, reading, researching, hanging out with my peeps, we’re learning.

    1. I quite agree. Learning is a lifelong experience. Education is not confined to schools. I think that is a key part of a good education – to teach people to think and be able to independently learn. It is also so important to be able to appraise the quality of the information being presented.

      1. I also think we can become so entrenched in the concerns regarding issues in life that we can actually complicate what can be seen in simple terms. Over the years, I’ve realized how easy learning is. With time, I saw how easy it is to explain subjects to another. Of course, this is partly needing listeners and those who want to learn. But to those interested, I see how simple teaching can be. I’ve written about this in several articles. It’s like looking at a coccoon, then suddenly getting it.

      2. I think humans, like all great apes, have a great love of learning, a need to learn and a propensity to learn. We do not like feeling bored.
        But I think that we like to learn the things we are interested in learning and education often has to attempt to get children to learn things they are not interested in. The best teachers find a way of making these things interesting.
        The trouble is that many children think they are forced to learn too much, too quickly with far too many things that they aren’t interested in at all.
        They are being force-fed.
        Teaching someone who really wants to learn can be easy. Teaching someone who does not want to learn is extremely hard. Teaching a class of children who have mixed abilities, levels of interest or enthusiasm is a difficult art.

      3. You make some interesting observations. As a student, young and upcoming, I too was bored much of the time, though I did have a few teachers who captured my interests, like my art and tort law teachers. As a teacher, I was determined to ensure the students had their basic skills to mastery, then use creative lessons to encourage them to enjoy and think for themselves. The ones who did, enjoyed the learning more, some far more, realizing they had in themselves what they needed to learn and venture forth. But in education, there’s no perfect system.
        **Regarding apes, and I’ve watched them live and on television, I’ve always been amazed at their complexity. They have so much that one can never fully understand, in my opinion, all that they feel and think. But they are limited by their genes/dna. For instance, though they are fascinating, I don’t believe they have the capability to wonder what life is all about. They think, feel, and enjoy each others’ company. But if a keyboard or bicycle were placed before them, without the intervention of humans to train, they wouldn’t know what they were looking at. I remember a show about apes. Watched it a couple of times.

      4. I found praise and encouragement the best way of engaging students. Taking a personal interest in them and relating to them establishes a relationship. I also deployed humour a lot which created a pleasant learning environment. I think, in most classes, we all got to enjoy ourselves and that seems fundamental to learning.
        While apes are limited in many ways they are more complex than most people realise. Their social order is very advanced and they do have a language – mainly sign language with some vocalisation.

      1. Right now in the divisive world of Brexit and Trump where even the most basic issues, such as whether the Earth is flat, is subject to question, I still wonder if any two people looking at any issue would see it in the same way. Everything has become political, not rational. It is very Orwellian. Black is white. Common sense?

      2. There’s an old saying: the bats have gotten into the belfry. With emotions and ties, one can use their influences to warp or alter the perspectives of people, even rational people. If one can demoralize, and the techniques are legion, then a lot can be altered. If the media and other sources are constantly attacking our understanding, more of the same. Common sense is what we’re born with. It must be protected by the family. Unfortunately, if the parents have lost their common sense, the difficulties increase. Many people do not understand when I explain seeing with understanding. That understanding is knowing without knowing how you know, subject to no other person.

      3. I wonder how you would separate that innate understanding from the cultural and family ethos that we all are subjected to in our developing years? How would the family protect you from that bias? They have biases of their own.

      4. There’s an understanding that our parents have experiences more than our own, that they were once children and learned while growing up. I’ve always encouraged, when I came across a young person who had family problems to not resent those problems, and not allow others to talk them into intellectually putting them and the world in bubbles. Each generation have their own difficulties, and we as kids cannot fully understand others for we cannot be in their shoes, looking through their eyes, understanding what events shaped them into who they are. But, we can look, wonder, and live our lives. As I consider from where I am, I seemed to have had a “sense” while growing up. I seemed, somehow, able to put some distance between myself and what I was learning. Not perfect, but I can look at what I’m told or learning, then really look at it for meaning, if there be any. We can also look and see intention, often the words telling us a story. When people are sharing wisdom, understanding born of good information and contemplation, we can see it. This took time.

      5. I’m not sure this objectivity you describe really exists. I think we all believe that what we feel is objectivity. But it isn’t. We are amazingly subjective. We are subject to cultural perspective and the zeitgeist of our times. It influences us. Some psychologists even argue that self does not exist. The thing we call self is a product of learnt behaviour stemming from our interactions with others and the world around us. I am not sure I completely go along with that but I do not underestimate the effect of other influences upon my thinking and perceptions. I do not believe we are as much in control as you suggest we are.

      6. The thing is, and it’s difficult to get people to hear this, but one can never say there’s no truth, because that would require “seeing” truly. One can never say there’s no objectivity, because that would require objectivity to say that. This is not intellectual. I can tell when someone is not truthful. I can “see” honesty. I’m aware that 2 + 3 = 5 is true: here and anywhere else. Yes, we are subjective, but this requires objectivity to realize. My objectivity, when I’m there, allows me to see above the fray and emotions. If we couldn’t be objective or see truth, there would be no frame of reference to have this dialogue.

      7. It is always good to have honesty and passion. But I am still not convinced that we can be sure about anything – even 2 plus 3. In fact I know there are mathematicians who can prove it doesn’t add up to 5. Not that that makes sense to me.
        I too think that I can weigh things up accurately when faced with a situation. I may be wrong.

      8. Thank you, but those mathematicians cannot prove that. Unless one is willing to set aside understanding, 5 + 3 = 8 no matter what. But I can imagine their arguments, but understanding keeps me grounded. But this is my last share, then each person makes their own decisions. To say we cannot be sure about anything is a contradiction in terms.

      9. I don’t see how saying we can’t be sure about anything is a contradiction of terms. It is a statement of fact. Certainty is surely an illusion. Everything is subjective. Mathematicians can prove that 5+3 does not equal 8. In a quantum world something comes from nothing, can exist in two places at once or cease to exist.
        I think certainty is extremely uncertain.

      10. Okay, I’ll try it one more time. But, I understand where this argument comes from as I had those thoughts around seven. I was pretty creative in my doubts. Thankfully, they bothered me, so I had to search and listen, practical experiences having much to do with my outlook. **I hope this helps: I truly do. One can’t be say you can’t be sure of anything. The very statement is a statement of fact: you’re saying you are sure you can’t be sure. That’s a starting place, for you. Once you realize that, then you’ll know you can be sure of some things, one of which is that you exist. You know you exist (one truth), because you are aware of your own existence when you close your eyes and separate from thoughts (Thoughts aren’t you.). Second, because you are so unaware, as I am, someone created you (You didn’t create yourself. That’s a second contradiction. Why? Because no one who created themselves would be unaware of that fact.). Third, there is truth, because to say there is no truth would be truth itself (contradiction).

      11. You’re heading right for Descartes here – ‘I think therefore I am’. I would agree that my own existence is all I can be sure off 100%. Everything else is up for grabs, discussion and debate. I think I know I came into being but I sure do not believe I was created. I believe that I evolved. My consciousness is a product of biochemistry. It is a survival characteristic. Psychologists are now questioning the whole idea of ego. Does an ‘I’, an identity, actually exist at all or is this sense of identity nothing more than an aggregate built up from our experience – i.e. it has no substance, does not exist apart, and is merely a product of our biochemical consciousness based on what happens to us from birth. So, no I do not accept your second point. Third – there well may be truth but that does not mean that we can in any way understand it or even know where to look to find it. I think you make assumptions based on your culture and upbringing – i.e. the concept of creation or the idea that you are a real person apart from your thoughts and have a real identity or that you or I can in any way perceive what is true. As I have said before – this whole life may be an illusion.

  2. Hmmm…. Seems like my last share didn’t take. Here’s what I’ve learned. I had those thoughts at seven years of age, but they troubled me. I couldn’t agree. I thought, at times, that nothing means nothing. There was no meaning. With time, I just watched. I listened. I worked. Had hobbies, and socialized more.
    One: you know you exist (That’s a fact, for you can see yourself apart from thoughts when you close your eyes and are alone.). Two, you know you didn’t create yourself for that’s a contradiction, for who was the first creator (Plus, who would create themselves and forget?). Third, you know there’s truth because only truth knows what is. To say we can’t be sure of anything is a statement of fact (in error). Because, if we couldn’t be certain of anything, this conversation never would be taking place. There would be no purpose to it. Why would people be making statements of certainty that there is no certainty?
    I think, for some people, due to realizing we know so little, that there are mysteries, they prefer their own thinking, believing they determine their own reality to the uncomfortable experience of realizing we know little, but that there is meaning. I think the reason people are uncomfortable believing in God, that the one who created us knows everything and that we rely on Him is because they don’t like the idea of not knowing everything and relying on Him Who created them. I get it. I’ve gone through that. But, and this took time and a lot of internal struggle, I know He knows everything, that I never will, but will always rely on He Who created me. *This didn’t come from any pastor, counselor, or anyone. I had to come to this on my own. I belong to no religious organization. Yeah, I go to church from time to time. Some of my friends are there.
    I also understand that sometimes, people have had tragedies, that hopes and dreams, and when things go wrong, they have difficulty, believing their god.

    1. Dolphin – yes I’m sorry – I have had to use this delay system, to OK replies, because of unpleasant threats and trolling. I’m sorry for the inconvenience to my valued responders – such as your good self.
      I find the whole concept of god a cultural one. It merely kicks the can down the road – where did this super-complex being come from? Who created him? Did he just come out of nothing? No – I think it is a very human attempt to explain amazing mysteries.
      Many people make statements of certainty where there is none. Much past believe has been shown to be erroneous. Just because we believe something to be true does not make it true. Even with evidence it might not be true. Greater evidence might well come to light that disproves those ‘truths’.
      I see no evidence of a creator – far from it. I could design a better human body in five minutes flat. We’ve so many huge faults due to the way we have evolved. I see no evidence for a creator in anything I’ve seen. It would be nice if there were.
      But we can converse and debate without certainty. That is valid.

      1. Interesting thoughts. We had this discussion over the years. For me, it’s not cultural, because it took decades and I knew I had to arrive at understanding on my own. I guess it’s that independence thing. I just can’t buy into what anyone says. I listen, then consider.
        **Look, here’s a part. This came partly from another’s question. One asked, who created God. Here’s what I shared: There has to be a beginnning. Time has to have a beginning. For what comes before all the afters? Before all the afters (to have befores and afters, in the time stream, there must be the ultimate beginning) is the first before, when time began. So, someone else asks, what was going on before time? I explained, nothing, at least not in the sense of time. That means, whoever was there at the beginning didn’t exist in time (It was all now.). Outside time and space. Whoever was at the beginning then created everything. Also, in the same sense, there must be the first, the cause of all effects. One Who always was and is. We can see this in nature, examples demonstrating. This, I am certain of. No scientist will prove this. I can see this for myself. All that is around me tells me of the Creator.
        ***One more thing. The simplest form of life never could have self-evolved. No accident could have occurred to create life. This I deduced by the complexity of the simplest of life forms, the details and millions or billions of parts necessary, all functioning in concert, parts with jobs. Then, I researched on what scientists have discovered. They, themselves, have discovered that any attempt to create a cell from scratch causes whatever forms to destroy itself. What this entails is that either a cell spontaneously formed at once, or not at all. If you were to take a space flight to another solar system, then land on an uncharted, never before visited, planet, then walk into a cave. If you found twenty metal folding chairs, in rows of five, with little plastic cups on the legs and rivets for the joints, you would say someone has been on the planet before. But the chance of those chairs spontaneously evolving is much more likely than one cell forming on its own.
        I guess it’s a matter of choice. I just know I didn’t make myself, so someone did.
        One more thing. Someone else might think I know a lot. I know nothing. Just little old me. Anything I understand: where does the understanding come from?

      2. Dolphin – you are dealing here with the big questions that I love dealing with – and for which there are no answers.
        I would suggest that many of these concepts are simply beyond the human mind to understand.
        I believe that you are attempting to apply human logic (based on a very limited understanding) to things that are simply way out of our scope and so beyond our ability to comprehend.
        Firstly – culture is something we are born into. We can’t escape it. From birth we are brought up in a culture. Our parents, relatives and acquaintances all instill it into us. One cannot escape it. We learn it with speech, with all the information we absorb as we grow. You cannot outthink cultural bias. It is instilled in you. One cannot be independent. The programming has already taken place. It rewires our brains.
        Human minds cannot comprehend massive numbers – millions and billions really hold no reality for us. They are abstract. The billions of years necessary for our evolution is beyond our understanding. The zillions of stars are meaningless. Infinity is beyond our comprehension.
        We cannot comprehend something going on forever. Everything in our experience has a beginning and an end. Yet time and space cannot have a beginning or an end.
        To follow human thinking back to a beginning takes us into the realm of fantasy. In order to deal with this most human cultures have conveniently created god or gods.
        Something must have created it. It had to be some all-knowing, all-powerful god – who is infinite and has always existed.
        Somehow it is easier for the human brain to conceive of a being (made in our image) who was there before the beginning.
        This is utterly illogical. We cannot conceive of time, space or the universe lasting forever yet we can accept some incredibly powerful and complex god, capable of creating whole universes, living forever.
        By definition something able to create a universe and life out of nothing must be more complex and sophisticated that that he creates. If we go back before this beginning we have just god in the midst of nothing. Yet nothing has no boundaries; it is infinite. This amazingly complex god able to build universes of zillions of stars just happened to be sitting around in the midst of nothing. He was never created. He just was. We can somehow accept that but we cannot accept that the universe, which those amazingly huge and stupendous, is much less than god but could not have always been here or could not have come from nothing.
        The flaw in thinking is to kick the can down the road. We can’t imagine a universe coming from nothing or always being there but we can imagine a creator coming from nothing or always being there. Utterly illogical.
        As a biologist I am aware of all the work that has been done to create life in the laboratory. We have managed to create all the building blocks of proteins, DNA, fats and sugars. We have managed to get them to join into simple blobs that can reproduce – they are called coercervates.
        All present life is amazingly complex – not surprisingly – it has all evolved for three billion years. Science has only really been around for three hundred years. In a few thousand years I reckon our understanding will have improved immensely. We’re still living in the dark ages under the influence of religious fundamentalism that has rewired our brains and limited our reason. I think we need to rid ourselves of religion and have a few thousand years of science before our understanding improves.
        The first beginnings of life were amazingly unlikely; but they happened. Perhaps only once in all time and all the zillions of stars – and it happens to be us.
        Amazingly unlikely is still far more likely that some giant fairy straight out of primitive human imagination.
        I find the creation of life incredible.
        The evolution of that life created ever more complex organisms over three billion years. It is slow. Three and a half billion years is an incredible length of time.
        As a biologist I look at the human body and see a whole range of flaws due to the way we evolved. We’ve got lumbered with ridiculously stupid things. I could design a far more efficient body in ten minutes flat. A few examples:
        Our lungs evolved out of fish swim-bladders – hence they only have one opening and it opens with the gut – so we easily choke to death.
        Our heads evolved out of early cephalisation – hence our brains are stuck out at the top with a neck that easily breaks and the need for a protective skull.
        Our reproductive system evolved from a fish common cloaca – hence it opens in the middle of the excretory and egestory system. So we constantly have infections and contamination from faeces and urine.
        I could go on about joints, spines, hearts, kidneys and just about everything else – and that’s before I get on to the cellular level and biochemistry.
        If we were created then the creator is an idiot or an extremely poor designer.
        As for our understanding: Human being have evolved to have intelligence. We are successful precise because we are good at solving problems, seeing patterns and forming theories. That is what your brain is doing when it creates your reasoning. It appears like logic because it seems to solve the problems. It works very well on tangible things – like solving seasons, hunting game, finding food, water and shelter. It is out of its depth in trying to understand the universe.
        We have huge difficulty with accepting and understanding our own death. Another bit of flawed logic – with heavens, paradise, Valhalla and a thousand other nonsensical notions.
        We think we know and understand things. That is just the way our brains work. We like crosswords, jigsaws and puzzles. That’s all.

  3. The first thing is we can not judge, if as you share, we don’t know anything. From that point, if we realize we know so little, then that brings humility. It seems, the more I know and understand, the more I realize how little I know. But what I do understand, I do understand. Thanks for your share.

  4. We know and are aware enough to be amazed. The difficulty is when we get wrapped up in our thoughts, intellect, and imagination. I’ve understood that imagination does not equal reality. It may use reality as a basis, but real life is real, but people have to get out of their imaginations to be aware. In my youth, I could imagine just about anything, and I had wished I was ignorant with a low imagination. All the movies about alternate realities I had already thought of most. Nothing new. But with time, thankfully through working, working with my hands, having hobbies, and thinking about every day things. I realized life is not the intellect. You can use the intellect to help explain. But understanding is something no robot or computer can have. It’s real. Yes, I can see that. No one could ever make me doubt. It’s like knowing without knowing how you know.

      1. Many, if not most, if not all, people think they are 100% right. Most of them, if not all, are wrong.
        This belief that we can be objective and know what is right is usually wrong. I don’t believe we can.
        Terrible things have been done by people who believe they are doing the right thing and know 100% they are right.

      2. I’ll try this again. One can never say others can’t know the difference between right and wrong. In order to say that, you have to know what’s right and wrong. It’s like saying it’s dark when you’ve never seen the light: you can’t know. The very fact that one says we can’t know what’s right and wrong indicates an internal realization of what is right and wrong. One can never say “they’re” all wrong without knowing right. On another note, we are born knowing right from wrong, else we wouldn’t conceive of injustice. The problem is people handling when they see wrong: over-reaction, resentment, emotional traumas, or steady understanding. Many people live the lives of quiet desperation, reacting without thinking clearly and with patience. That’s why such travesties have happened.

      3. What you are suggesting is that human beings have an intrinsic understanding of right and wrong – an intrinsic moral code.
        I do not agree. I think we have an intrinsic ability to learn a moral code. Babies begin to pick up that code from their parents. We teach children to share, not to be violent, to develop empathy. While there is a propensity to learn this I do not think it is naturally there. We have examples of societies where cruelty is the norm or killing is praised.

      4. Site doesn’t always seem to work. Anyway, I’ll try this another way. There are many contradictions in terms, some of this used to trouble me until I started looking at things from the perspective of understanding. From there, things got easier. Yes, I can know things without knowing how I know: it’s self-evident. I can realize. I also understand that one can never say there is no right and wrong, for that would require an understanding of what right and wrong are. One can never say others can’t know what’s right and wrong for the same reasons. And one could never say terrible things have happened, for in order that terrible things to happen and we to realize would require that right and wrong are at work. We realize something is terrible by the fact that it’s wrong. In other words, without realization, knowing right and wrong, there would be no reason for this discussion, and one would never even have the discussion for what would be talked about? **Terrible things happen because people don’t adhere to knowing what’s right. Also, they may have been traumatized, emotionalized, or making excuses, leading to those bad judgements. Trauma can do some strange things to people. And conflict/guilt is the evidence we’re going in the wrong direction.

      5. I think you are finding that the comment doesn’t appear until it has been approved. I have to moderate – due to trolling.
        To understand what is right and what is wrong is at least partially learnt.

      6. But to believe in what others say requires an innate desire to understand and know what is right and wrong. In other words, it has to be inside you to begin. Then, as you grow, learn, and see, you realize which information was good and what is better.

      7. So you do not think that we learn what is right and wrong? You think that understanding is present in us from the beginning. I don’t. Different people have very different views on what is right and wrong. They can’t all be right can they? There are a myriad of views and beliefs.
        No – I think we are born with a capacity to seek truth – an enquiring mind, a mind that seeks answers, a mind that spots patterns. But we learn right and wrong from our experience and our beliefs are only as good as what we are fed with. Garbage in garbage out.
        40% of Americans actually believe, in the face of all scientific evidence, that humans were created just 10,000 years ago. They hold that to be true.
        As I said – garbage in garbage out.

      8. There is a difference between information and understanding. When babies are born, they are very close to understanding. With time (I think this is partly due to a desire to belong and have family.), we are inundated with information, and yes, some of that information is misinformed, generation after generation, but the basic desire is to understand which is suppressed by all that is around us. I think this causes all kinds of illnesses, indicating inner stresses that we’re hiding even from ourselves. Rare are people who are truly searching, wanting to critically review what they’ve been taught, but it’s still a part of us. I’ve met plenty of people really searching, questioning all they’ve been taught. They find some things good, but others misinformation (partly right, partly not. It takes time, inquisitiveness, and a holding onto what you originally had as a child before all the misinformation. But thinking for yourself comes with consequences, most people don’t want to experience, but each person can. **It’s like when a teacher used the pail of water explanation of gravity. I knew something was amiss. **But when someone says we can’t know truth, right and wrong, that same inner knowing explains otherwise, for then there would be no need for the conversation for no one would know what we are talking about.

      9. I think that the type of inquisitiveness and reasoning for oneself, not accepting anything at face value, is excellent and should be central to all good education. By questioning everything we unveil lots of false information.
        But this is different to being intrinsically able to discern the truth. Different people questioning the facts come to different conclusions (based on their experience and perspective). Unfortunately none of us are capable of objectivity. We are all victims of our cultural indoctrination.

      10. I am amazed at how people reason. I have had the good fortune to have talked to many people, and with time, realized that I still have much to learn. Having said that, understanding and truth, when I see it, is inescapable. If you didn’t have understanding and knew truth, you could never be having this discussion. You wouldn’t even know what you were talking about, nor would you have any interest, for there would be no truth or understanding in you to have the discussion (The entire concept wouldn’t faze.). Fascinating. It’s like a person saying there is no light, but later comments on how dark things are becoming as the sun sets.

      11. Dolphin – I think we have views – not truth. We have our own understanding of what we are talking about. The only way that could be considered a truth is if there was indisputable evidence and everyone agrees. We hold views that we might believe are true – but that does not make them true. In fact everyone disagrees as to what any ‘truth’ actually is. There is no truth – only views.

      12. It’s okay, there are people of different beliefs. I was always one to be curious, wanting to understand, realizing some things are self-evident, needing no support. So, I share, I speak, I write, but never worry whether others agree. They have to do their own thinking and come to their own conclusions. Kind of like Johnny Appleseed. I share, and when some people are happy that someone is saying what they’ve always known, their hearts feel warm. I’ve gotten that from some people. Someone was saying what I realized for myself. If people don’t agree, that’s okay. I don’t need to convince anyone. That’s for them. I know there are others reading this: reading both of our conversations.

      13. The purpose of discussions and debates is to get to the truth of things. Sometimes, truth can be the best answers at a given time, though better answers might come along later. If there was no truth, only views, there would be no reason for discussions, which I’m doing for people reading. But even views have to have some basis in truth else we couldn’t know whether they were correct or otherwise. In order to have better answers, we must be getting closer to truth. **Simple example. I see a rock hit the water and say the rock caused the splash. Another says that’s just a point of view, that the water was the cause, requiring the rock to land in it. The first is truth, the second just intellect.

      14. I think the purpose of discussion and debate is to exchange ideas. Sometimes those discussions help one develop ones thinking; sometimes it is illuminating, sometimes it revealing – but truth – that is elusive.
        There are simple things – like rocks splashing – that are observable and may elicit agreement – but do they reveal truth? What is happening on a quantum level? Does a rock splash in a dream? Can we prove our life is not a dream? Is there anything at all that one can be 100% sure of? I think not.

      15. There can be no opinion without truth. Yes, we can “see” and have opinions based upon emotions and personal desires, wanting to believe, but truth has to come first. And some “truth” is self-evident, requiring no proof, because it’s inwardly revealed. Those who see this understand. I can’t “prove” it, so I don’t seek to do so, but share and allow others to have their views.

      16. Dolphin – I’m not sure I agree with you. I think many, if not most people, hold opinions that are not based on any intrinsic truth. They are merely subjective views that they erroneously believe to be right. Fanatical suicide bombers have the opinion that they will enter paradise and be regaled with virgins. They believe this truth is self-evident. The American constitution states that all people are created equal – racists are firmly of the opinion that they aren’t. In my view opinion and truth rarely go together.

      17. Let me share what my understanding of truth is, and let the readers ponder and consider. I used to think truth is just what is, which to some degree, is true, whether we perceive it or not. 2 + 3 = 5 no matter whether you’re here or on Pluto (Yes, I know there are people who argue this, but that’s just intellectual playfulness.). I also see truth as understanding: we understand something even without supporting evidence (I know what honesty, dishonesty, and such look like. No one can tell me different.). Those “ah haa” moments. **Over the years, I’ve pondered, wondering what is the purpose of life. I’ve realized it can’t be about me. That’s too selfish. So I wondered. Listening to a pastor, years ago, he said something that stuck with me. Someone was talking about the intense doubts he had. The pastor shared that doubt in a person. That made me double-take. Years later, while driving, I remembered a passage in the bible. Jesus Christ said He was the truth, the way, and the light. Now, before anyone just casts my words aside as a religious extremist, or one who believes blindly, I didn’t grow up in the church. In fact, for many years, I didn’t attend, even as an adult. Thankfully, I think, this caused me to look at life through the same eyes as many others. It made sense. Before the universe began, what was there? Time requires a beginning. So, before time, what was there? I realized the universe and all of us required a creator. Meaning, there is an existence apart from the material world, and I learned, through science, that materials are made of non-material. Energy turns into material, for all materials are made of energy. I did the research. So what made energy? There’s a beginning, before all that we see. So, I realized, truth is a person. Not the material world. Which explains, to me, how we have souls and understanding. **Now, this took decades of wonder, not attempting to self-explain, just pondering, but mostly working and getting on with the day to day experience of family, friends, coworkers, and life.

      18. The universe is indeed made of energy.
        Does all matter, energy and time have a beginning? Maybe not.
        If it does have a beginning does that require a creator? Almost certainly not.
        For a creator capable of creating time and the universe to appear out of nowhere is absurd. That person/being would have needed to have been created or always existed. If that creator existed prior to the universe where did he/she exist? For them to exist there had to be time, matter and energy.
        All the human idea of a creator does is kick the can down the road.
        I find the idea of a creator absurd. By definition he/she would have to be more complex than the universe itself. Where did he/she come from? Who created her/him?

      19. Views are based on what a person perceives to be true – there is a big difference.
        Once everybody ‘knew’ the world was flat. There are still many who believe this to be true.
        What people believe and what is real are two different things.

  5. Actually, truth is self-evident. We’re born able to understand. But I have also learned that not everyone understands this. For myself, through time, patience, and observation, I came to realize understanding is seeing truth. But that’s for each person to realize.

    1. We are certainly born with curiosity and a brain that likes to deal with problems and seek solutions. We search for truth. I don’t think we understand what is true and what isn’t – just what seems to make sense to us at the time!

  6. Truth is self-evident. People can “see” it without anyone else supporting. It’s possible for thousands of people not understanding, but one person seeing clearly. So, each person can know, but may not be able to show others, for they have to see for themselves. For instance, I knew, as a kid, gravity was not a pulling, and years later, I’m reading that gravity is a force pressing down on the Earth. But I saw that for myself.

    1. Truth is not self-evident. Different people hold different truths. They truth anyone believes is purely subjective.
      Gravity is a force of attraction – the force that attracts a body towards the centre of the earth, or towards any other physical body having mass.

  7. Opinions are based on truth. Whether right or wrong, we see then most allow emotions and their cultural beliefs influence. Otherwise, there would be no opinions. Two people can see the same car accident but have completely different points of views regarding what happened. Same incident. But again, emotions and feelings alter views. But truth is truth. And truth, such as seeing honesty, what really happened, and aspects of human behavior is self-evident.

    1. Do we mean the same thing when we use this word truth??
      There is undoubtedly a reality that is the truth. I suspect that none of us are anywhere near to understanding that. Most of what we presently hold to be truth will, in the distant future, be looked on as superstition and nonsense. The truth we hold will be superseded by greater understanding just like the primitive ‘truths’ of the past has been superseded.
      The truth is out there. Our opinions are far from it.

      1. That’s a good question. People have different ideas on what truth is. We discussed that over the years. For myself, I started from the beginning. First, I said truth is what is. For some reason, I couldn’t quite solidify in that. Of course, truth is what is. But what is? One thing, which I’ve said before, I realized I exist: that’s true. I then realized God created me, for I didn’t give myself life and a mind (a soul). Then, there are the more simple truths like 5 + 4 = 9 and when someone is dishonest. Those are easy. But the road was still years. One day, I heard a minister, which I respected, partly because I saw an honesty in him, unlike so many others. He said, on one instance, doubt is a person. That caused me to ponder. Later, I remembered the Lord saying He’s the truth, the way, and the life. I never quite got that. But, over the years, when I realized all that we see once did not exist, that everything had to have had a beginning, therefore a creator. That the material world (and material goes back to energy, which goes back to where?) had to have been created. So, there is a place outside time and space. What I arrived at was God created everything. So, when Jesus said He was the truth, I got it. All things were created through Him. So truth is God and His Son. That’s what I realized. **I don’t look to convince anyone. Just share and let people find their own understanding. I’m just glad that I finally understood. There had to be a beginning, that which caused everything to happen, for to have cause and effect, there has to be the original cause of all the effects: the beginning. **An no, I’m not a bible thumper. This took many years of pondering, not all the time, but little ah haa moments over time.

      2. Well I would agree that truth is what is – not that we can understand what is or see the truth.
        As to god – I started on that in my teens. When I was in my twenties I realised the fallacy contained in it.
        Where is this god?
        Where did he come from?
        Who created him?
        I soon realised that this concept was nothing more than a handy way of explaining the unexplainable – nothing more than a human fabrication.
        There is no evidence of any god, no evidence apart from primitive archaic writings of people in wildernesses, up mountains and in caves – anywhere where nobody else was witness. All too human. All too limited. All too absurd.
        No god is not truth. God is a human construct to explain the unknowable – infinity, death and reality.
        Truth is that all we can possibly know is that we exist. The whole universe may be a dream.

      3. I understand you’re perspective. From the material world, I looked at the universe and realized an accident, nor a big bang, could possibly have created all the planets, atoms, and consistencies, the beauty marvelous. Then I saw all the created animals, and no evidence of evolution, for there are no half-necked giraffes or other partial creatures. Then, I looked at human beings and all the complexities. Then cells, which I researched and found that scientists have found they never could have self-evolved (This last is something people will have to do on their own.). Through all of this, from a purely materialistic place, I realized creation. The evidence is nature screaming out to us creation. **Now, regards if that isn’t enough, the realization of my own existence roared a creator, for how am I here? How am I , the one who is aware, who sees his own thoughts, is conscious of himself: where did I come from. **See, the thing that people need to realize is they are not god. Once people realize that, then they know someone created them. I think some people have difficulty that another exists that knows everything, but they never will know everything. ***I’ve mentioned this to one who said there is no god. I explained that then he/she does believe in god, just that he/she thinks he’s god. What do you mean. Well, only a god could know everything to know there is no god. But remember, there has to be a beginning. God is at the beginning, the One Who is the cause of everything else, Himself never created, always there. That has to be. Why? Because there has to be a beginning. and only One Who’s always been could be the original cause of all else. Nature shows this cause and effect relationships. If you’re willing to seek, you will find. This took time.

      4. Dolphin, as a Zoologist and scientist I can pick no end of holes in your assertions.
        No – there does not ever have to be a beginning or an end – very human thinking. We find it hard to conceive of infinity – but we live in an infinite system.
        Yes – there is plenty of evidence for a big bang. Yes that is incredibly amazing – all the matter and energy in the universe coming into being in an instant – amazing to imagine – but not so amazing as imagining some supernatural being sitting in the middle of nothing and creating it. I notice that you conveniently gloss over this god of yours. What was his beginning? Where was he? Who created him? As I repeatedly say – you merely kick the can down the road. The creation of this superbeing is even more incredible than the creation of the universe out of nothing. At least we have evidence of the Big Bang. There is no evidence at all for god – just an inability of human thinking to conceive of infinity and an incredible event such as the Big Bang.
        As for evolution – it is extremely well documented and understood. As we progress with DNA evidence the process becomes clearer and clearer. There are plenty of intermediate species – giraffes with short necks – other species of humans. All well researched.
        As for cytology – the cell is a highly complex structure having evolved for over three billion years. The organelles (chloroplasts, mitochondria, etc) are incorporated bacteria. The eukaryote cell is a marvel. But it is far from perfect. It clogs up with plaques, wears out and has all manner of malfunctions and poor processes. It is the product of haphazard evolution.
        Creation was amazing. It took billions of years. It only happened once. All life evolved from that one first (simple) cell. It may be the only time this has happened in all the billions of years and zillions of planets in the universe. It did not need any divine creation – just time, chance and the way chemicals interact – amazing though it was.
        We can make all the chemicals of life in the laboratory in no time at all reproducing conditions that were present on earth back then. We can even get them to join together into simple cells – coercervates. And we’ve only been trying a hundred years!
        Give us a thousand years of science and we will have understood it all – from the Big Bang to the creation and evolution of life. Science is just in its infancy. We’ve only just begun and look how much we already understand.
        As for consciousness – another wonder. An evolutionary result of the intricate nerve net – a survival characteristic.
        Dolphin – me thinks that you have looked at the great mysteries of life – the creation of the universe, the creation of life, the creation of consciousness – and come up with the all too human answer – I can’t understand how this has happened so someone must have done it! It must be god.
        I reject that. It does not make any sense.
        Explaining an inconceivable mystery and wonder by creating an even bigger one seems far to simplistic and human.

  8. Look, it’s easy to use language and rhetoric. I’ve heard them all. For me, it wasn’t a matter of arguments and technical jargon. I get it. It was something I realized within. I would never dare to tell someone else what to believe, but I would share that they would have a perspective, founded on reasoning and experience. In the bible, as I’ve thought before, to the mind of reason, all know He exists and created the world and all it contains. Regarding cause and effect, I understood this by following the train of logic. In this world, we see cause and effects. But there’s no possibility of going backwards forever, that there’s no beginning, for everything we see in nature tells of a beginning and end. From this, I realized there has to be a first beginning, for in order to have afters, there has to be an original beginning. To have time, there has to be a beginning. A starting point. Meaning, what was before time. No time. A point where everything is now. In this, I realized, as best I can, that our Father has always existed for there is no beginning or end for Him. He is. ***This, I share with readers. But I had to ponder, wonder, and observe, and over years of observation came realization. So, I could not expect others to arrive at agreeing with me just because I shared. It requires people to seek for themselves, truly wanting to understand and believe. **If a person is set not to believe, they’re going to find what supports that belief. And interestingly, that was written in the bible. I had even pondered that one, then realized some people cannot believe because they don’t want to, for whatever reasons, then saw it written thousands of years ago. They predicted this.

    1. Ho Dolphin – me thinks you do not see the flaw in your thinking: you believe that everything must have a beginning (which I find incorrect) then go telling me that this mysterious superbeing is the exception – he has no beginning! Whoa? So why does this incredible being have no beginning? I find it nonsensical.
      Then we are back to faith – which we have the escape clause – is not rational.
      I think you choose to believe what you want to believe. Your assertion is that what you choose to believe is fact. The deciding factor on what you see as truth is merely your blind belief in it.

      1. Dude. You decided to blog. That means open to conversations and opinions. I’ve rarely seen a blog where everyone agrees, which is the purpose of blogging, to get views and share interactions. Okay, let’s share this another way, and remember, this is for the readers: all readers. Someone sees a river and is amazed at all the water, and through folklore, believes the water is an unending fountain. So, a traveler explains, no, the water isn’t unending, for he has seen the lake far above which is refilled by rain clouds. Two people with varying experiences, believing what they prefer based upon the facts they know, or the thoughts that have been shared. **Someone says, wait a minute, no time? Yeah. No time. All now. Everything present. Time was created. I remember, as a kid/teen, someone (and books) talking about infinitely going back in time. For some reason, that didn’t sit right with me. I thought, back in time forever? How? To have an after, and all the afters, there has to be a before. What’s the first before? That meant time has a starting point. Just a reasoning process. This is not blind belief: it’s that villager and traveler looking at the same river. Now, I’m certain there are many things others see I don’t, for with time, that happens from time to time. And I appreciate when others share something I never considered before, for then I’m grateful. A beginning is very rational. Faith is very rational.

      2. Yes it’s always good to get different views. But I believe in infinity. I don’t believe in beginnings. Time, space and maybe energy and matter are infinite. They have no beginning and they have no end.
        No I don’t think faith is rational. It depends on suspending logic. The very idea of a creator is illogical. This creator is capable of creating universes, remains invisible, and has always been there before time and the universe – where? How did something so vastly complex and sophisticated always exist? Everything has a beginning except god?
        I mean no disrespect by this is utterly illogical.
        As for design – well the human body, cytology and physiology is a mess. It is no great hardship to design something immensely better. The idea of design is flawed.

  9. The reason I believe the creator has no beginning is because he exists outside time and space, something I came to realize, for time is a created thing. Actually, scientists helped me with that one. Notice, when I write, I don’t over-react, just state what I’ve come to understand. Shows respect. One person says faith is not rational. That’s for one who differs in belief. I say faith is the only way. It’s not believing haphazardly. This too time, research, observations, and realizations. Yes, after all of this, there was a leap of faith, but it came over many, many years.

    1. OK – Dolphin I give you respect for your beliefs and faith. I did not mean to come across as disrespectful. I just don’t agree with it.

      1. That’s fantastic. I also don’t purport to know everything. I understand each person follows what they’ve come to understand and experiences. I’ve learned much from people with different opinions and views.

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