January 15

Reflection

“What is truth?” This question has echoed for more than two thousand years. It has become more urgent in this time of instant communication, fake news and alternative facts. Questions arise as truth is blurred in the communication of vital information or verifiable facts are denied. Public and private relationships are built on trust and trust depends on truth. In the absence of truthfulness trust crumbles. Once made public lies take on a life of their own. “That is the puzzle and the menace of our age. Speed and disruption have more psychological impact than truth and science. They shape the discourse. The debunking of a fake news story is seldom as powerful as the story itself. We’ve never seen anything like it because when hundreds of millions of Americans are connected, anyone, clueless or not, can disseminate what they like with a click. Facts matter. Truth has not yet perished, but to deny that it is under siege would be to invite disaster.”*

Prayer

May the truth set us free.

Action

Take time to check the facts before forming opinions. Hold people to honest speech whether they be family, friends or public figures.

Suggested Readings

Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:5 

“You are a king, then!” said Pilate. Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”  “What is truth?” retorted Pilate.
John 18:37-38

Indifference about the distinction between truth and lies is the precondition of fascism. When truth perishes so does freedom.
Simon Schama

 The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Morality is the basis of things and truth is the substance of all morality.
Mahatma Gandhi

A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.
Winston Churchill

 If you shut up truth and bury it under the ground, it will but grow, and gather to itself such explosive power that the day it bursts through it will blow up everything in its way.
Emile Zola

Truth is the backbone of character.
Henry F. Kletzing

The spirit of truth and the spirit of freedom – these are the pillars of society.
Henrik Ibsen

 

*(Excerpts from Am I Imagining This? Roger Cohen, The New York Times)

Tags: