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Truth ...

Monday, Sept 17, 2018. We live in a time where truth is an important topic. It is, indeed, a very old topic. Even 2000 years ago we hear the words of Pilate in the New Testament “What is truth?”, when he talks to Jesus himself (John 18, 38). Today, with the newly developed capabilities of the internet “fake news” are a well-known challenge. But it is an old challenge: who controls the media controls the public opinion. Many leaders and men of power have known this for a long time …

What is truth? …

Today, we live in a time where the fight for truth, the fight for facts, is heavy. Many newspapers are involved, many TV stations, government agencies and government press representatives. The battle is faught by many, by lobbyists, by journalists, by scientists …

Before you get involved too deeply, let us sort the quest. Let us discuss the basics. Let us look at the limits and targets which we might have. What is our own contribution and state within the middle of the battle?

First, there are facts. But facts alone need interpretation. If there is a cow on the road, what does that mean? Is it the first cow ever on the road? Is there always a cow on the road? How many cows are usually on the road, on which road? Is the cow white or black or spotted? What does the black cow stand for? Why is a white cow dangerous?

A fact is never a fact alone. We interpret facts, and any news statement on a fact will always be an interpretation. If it is a public TV station, what is the statement about? What is the target?

You cannot state a fact without a target!

Facts and Fake-News …

It is a core part of politics to use facts to underpin an opinion. Any statement is a political statement. There are no facts which would not be political. Of course, everyone claims to stick to the facts only. Yet, there are no facts without interpretation!

But knowing that facts need interpretation, it would be a lie to say that there would not be facts! Of course there are facts. There is a cow on the road. It is not a horse. It is not a cat. It is a cow. It is on the road now, not yesterday, not tomorrow. There are, indeed, facts!

It is very difficult, to report facts. What level of detail do you want to go into to be precise? Do you want to describe the cow exactly? That is, if driven to its extreme, quite a nonsense and no one will ever be willing to listen to you. So you need to shorten your statements. You need to find a good way to communicate. It is not a lie to be brief and come to the point. But it can be a lie, if you leave out important facts which change the meaning!

We live in a time where truth becomes important yet again. There is the truth which Jesus carried - he called himself the truth. There is much more to discover here, much deeper insight into what is true and good and reliable! Have a look into the Gospel of John! (Roland Potthast) ... further texts

jn_en_2018_09_17.txt · Last modified: 2018/09/23 13:26 by potthast