Hello everyone and welcome back to Deeper Waters where we are diving into the ocean of truth. We’re going through the doctrine of God and recently, we finished up a look at the doctrine of truth. Now, we’re going to turn to the other side of the coin and see what we can find out about falsity. Our guide for this has been the Summa Theologica of Thomas Aquinas. You can read that online at newadvent.org. Tonight we’re going to be asking if falsity is in things.
When I was younger, I remember walking the railroad tracks with my Dad on some summer afternoons. I also remember him trying to tell me how we had stumbled across gold on the tracks. Singer Geoff Moore of Geoff Moore and the Distance has a song called “Good To Be Alive” where he echoes the same thought of how at the age of eight, he had a pocket full of rocks that he knew were made of solid gold.
Well, it’d be nice if we did have that gold, but we have in fact what is called fool’s gold. This is something that has the appearance of being gold and you could fool someone who did not know better, but it only goes to the point of appearance. It does not have the substance of gold.
In a similar way, falsity does exist in things. All things are true insofar as they are knowable, but they’re false insofar as they are not what they can often appear to be. The only exception of this, though not mentioned by Aquinas explicitly, would be God in whom there dwells no falsity.
Our moral culture certainly needs to learn this as we have gone on a quest to find the ultimate. In the west, Christianity has been forsaken and in its place we have had for awhile secularism, but people are finding they cannot live in a godless universe and there is still a hole in their hearts. Unfortunately, rather than return to Christianity, they are turning to Eastern thought.
These have the appearance of truth, but they are false. Many times today people get taken in by claims that sound spiritual, but aren’t. The Mormons are an excellent example of this. It sounds really spiritual to hear things Mormons say about relying on God alone and having faith based on a confirmation of the Spirit. It’s just not biblical. People were told to examine claims and test them. A person was to know Christ rose from the dead based on the evidence and not a burning in the bosom.
Ultimately, falsity exists in things in which they appear to be what they are not, including being a unity when in reality they are not unity itself that is found in God. It is said that an actor is a false Hector. If someone is on stage playing a role, they are pretending to be a character and thus necessarily they are not that same character.
Thus, we conclude falsity does exist in things.
We shall continue tomorrow.