What is truth?

How to find what is out of reach.

The concept of the truth seems straightforward. It is supposed to be something that cannot be changed by argument or opinion. There are truths in math and everyday matters. Any number divided by one is itself. Some daffodils bloom in early spring. These are facts. On a small scale, facts are the truth, but how is truth defined outside of mundane occurrences or mathematical calculations? Everything is subjectively witnessed and judged. What is truth without objectivity? How can it be found?

Truth can’t be reduced to hard facts when it comes to important events. Every person has a different perception, and perception is true. However, no perception is the “real” truth, which must be objective. If someone calls out in class, some people in the room think it’s “annoying” while others think it’s “funny.” These ideas have the same subjective value, but neither of them comes from an objective lens. One may claim that the truth is simply that someone called out in class, but that doesn’t tell the whole story; it doesn’t say if the people in the front laughed while everyone else rolled their eyes. Reactions differ based on perspective, but they are still part of a story. Subjective ideas are an integral part of greater, objective truth (“greater” as in “notable enough to inspire response”), because they’re part of reality. The truth of major events, such as those of 9/11, can’t be reduced to “two planes crashed into the World Trade Center.” Those truths include millions of people. Every person’s experience is a piece, and the truth is all of their stories combined into a whole.

By this definition, the objective truth does exist, but it cannot be grasped by people. If someone perceives this truth, it is instantly corrupted by inherent bias and personal judgement. So, if people can never know the real truth, how can they know anything at all? The answer is simple: the real truth is the combination of different interpretations. It is possible to get closer to this truth. By merging their individual perspectives, people learn the most objective truth possible.