Problematizing truth is a methodological problem. Philosophy always asks the question: what is truth. Socrates used to play with truth, by probing his students with an endless play of questions and answers and finally shedding of the ritual of the question itself in sheer sophistry. But again the question remains: what is truth: is this the truth: what ought to be the truth. Instead of posing truth as a discourse, I would like to dialogue with truth.
Religions amalgamate truth into a cauldron of value, a relation to the supernatural. They make it out that truth is essential for salvation, eternal life, and all the metaphysical attributes, that separate the divine from the human. Now what can this type of truth be defined? Truth is separated from reason and undergoes the ritual, an enigma of the supernatural. For a non believer truth makes no sense. Theistic truth can’t be defined but only experienced as proclaimed by the mystics. Such a concept of truth can be delusional. Truth in the religious sense can be described as theistic-mania. However religious truth has been dismantled by structuralism and postmodernism. Truth for them is a play of signs, a playful connection between the signifier and the signified. Theology from a metaphysical frame work has been deconstructed, that is the Logos of Presence is an empty sign. But still believers of theism regard it as something fundamental.
How can we portray truth in the scientific realm? There are conjectural truths. For example the idea of the Big Bang is conjectural. But the concept of DNA is verifiable through the experimental. So also is the existence of subatomic particles. There are also other types of scientific truths, the inductive and the deductive. The inductive truth stems from premises that are true and leading to conclusions. For example: All men are mortal. Socrates is a Man. Therefore Socrates is mortal. This is an inductive truth. For deductive truth: the premises can be true or false. If they are true, they lead to the right conclusions. For example sugar dissolves in water and metal does not dissolve in water.
Next I would like to take the Hegelian concept of truth and that being, arriving at a thesis, then an antithesis and finally a synthesis. The problem of Hegel’s truth is that there might not be a synthesis. Let’s take communism as an example. The domination, corruption and violence attached to communism shifted its crux from the synthesis that Communism is right to an antithesis. The synthesis today at the level of political praxis is leanings of political philosophy to the dialectics of production and profit. Dialectical materialism has grown in its stature to opportunistic capitalism. The ideological apparatuses of the state control and monitor the individual secretly. Capitalism has shed its tentacles and has united societies into global corporations. Global corporations go even to the extent of funding democratic elections and bringing to victory candidates of their choice. Here truth becomes a choice of being a value as an economic entity. Truth becomes manipulated for affluent economic consumption.
Next I would like to explain truth from an ontological, phenomenological, psychoanalytic perspective. I am also going to incorporate postmodernism into my narrative. Ontology explains the structure of being, the presence of making the meaning of being. Postmodern philosophy has challenged the existence of presence of being. What I would like to say is that meaning is always being made. The processing of meaning through contents consciousness (phenomenology) is a dialectical process. We can call the making of meaning as processual ontology. Let’s take the concept of meaning psychoanalytically. The Philosopher Sartre has given the status of being as unlimited freedom. But psychoanalytically meaning of being remains conditioned to the ID, EGO and Super Ego. Raw passions are controlled by the EGO, family moorings, and the Super EGO, the laws of the society, what Lacan calls as: In the Name of the Law of the Father. A being has to tight rope walk on these three psychological attributes the ID, EGO and the Super Ego. A Nietzsche’s follower would in post-modern sense would say: sublimate the ID, transcend the Ego and the Subvert the Super Ego. By doing so, man can become the Übermensch or the over-man. Truth in the post modern sense depends on how well, you can sublimate the ID, transcend the Ego and subvert the Super Ego.