Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Faith in Truth

I believe truth to be of paramount importance. Myths, legends, religions and stories can be useful means of creating and discovering truth, but if not approached thoughtfully impractical narratives can lead to grave falsities.

Disillusionment is an important step toward a more practical and effective faith. Fundamentalists on both ends of the spectrum may contend that faith cannot be independent of superstition, supernaturalism, and literalism—that in order to remain faithful a person must obediently reject rationality, logic or new evidence. However, to reject evidence, truth, and knowledge would be counterproductive to what many Mormons refer to as, exaltation. Transhumanists might call it transcendence.

President J. Reuben Clark once said, “If we have truth, it cannot be harmed by investigation. If we have not truth, it ought to be harmed.” (The Church Years, pg 24)

In order for a humanity to find truth we must question, petition, and investigate individually and collectively. Our biblical narratives encourage individuals who lack wisdom to inquire and they will receive knowledge liberally. When Adam and Eve partook of the fruit of knowledge in the Garden of Eden “…the LORD God said, Behold,the man is become as one of us.” Our ability to increase in truth and knowledge is suggested to be essential to becoming posthuman or God. Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles reinforces this theme, "Knowledge is essential to our understanding of the purpose of mortal life and of oureternal destiny as resurrected beings after mortal life."

Even though it seems that the Mormonism described in this passage is lost in the wake of disciplinary councils or excommunications, this is the Mormonism that inspires me. I still have faith in truth.