Contra Subjectiva

I’m back momentarily to rail against subjectivity as a doctrine. Yes, it’s useful, and necessary. It’s just not in and of itself sufficient. The idea that all truth is subjective, and therefore all equal, is what we used to call sophistry.

Sophistry is the derivation of faulty conclusions from valid premises. It is characterized by excessive simplicity. The same root appears in a similarly pejorative sense in the word sophomoric. Sophisticate similarly tends toward deprecation. And yet, the root itself – sophos – means wise.

It’s a matter of knowing enough to be dangerous, as distinct from knowing enough to be good. Such is the danger facing one who has embraced his dreams without any understanding of how to realize them. It is not enough to dream.

As I understand it, Zen is founded on a recognition of both the limitations and the importance of knowledge. Zen is the study of the Buddha in the world. So, too, is Christianity.

But, I came here to argue that it was an error to suppose that all truths were created equal. And therein lies the crisis inherent in the idea of America, and even more fundamentally, in the idea of Liberty itself.

How is a meritocracy to be judged?

Who measures the content of character?

These questions seem so abstract, but they scream out to us from the foundations of our society, like aggrieved ghosts.

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