Consider the above quote from John F. Kennedy about the significance of young people. There is something intrinsically true we know about it even if we don’t personally know a lot of young people. It’s the kind of statement that you hear and then it resonates with your own life experiences and observations. Young people are the future.
Now consider that John F. Kennedy never said that.
But you know the person who did.
His name was Adolf Hitler.
Does that change your reaction to the quote? Are you now debating the validity of what it says? Do you feel weird about agreeing with it a moment ago?
These are all real realities of how we process information. While context is certainly valuable when discerning truth, oftentimes we move beyond context and instead subjectively look for things that agree with our beliefs.
I had coffee with a guy yesterday who was explaining a fascinating theological concept to me that I’d never heard before. Only after he explained it, and I indicated my interest in it, did he reluctantly tell me the source. It was from someone he expected me to disagree with on name alone. When I told him the source didn’t matter to me, he looked genuinely surprised. His assumption is indicative of this bigger reality. The fact he was quoting a Christian source proves this all the more.
While JFK never said the quote above, and someone we despise said it, it’s still true. That’s because apart from God, nobody owns truth. The challenge then for each of us is to objectively find truth all around us without limiting our exposure to it as a result of the source.
- Where are you looking for new ideas?
- Where are you not looking?
Truth is all around you. Don’t miss it.