Re: virus: Origin of "Truth"?
Thu, 17 Oct 1996 22:26:08 -0500 (CDT)

On Thu, 17 Oct 1996, Schneider John wrote:

> On Thursday, Oct 10, 1996 at 12:42 AM, Kenneth Boyd wrote:
> > I suspect truth is a concept invented to predict usefulness, which
> > malfunctions because truth is harder to verify than usefulness.
> I think the origin of truth is that it was the logical opposite of
> falseness. Put yourself in prehistoric times - after long struggle,
> you finally achieve communication. There is no concept of truth....
> until somebody tells you there's a busty blond behind yonder boulder,
> where instead you find a hungry lion. Egad - what he said was so, was
> *not* so. So, "truth" was defined to be "what is so," and "untruth"
> was "what is not so."

"what is not so" is much less useful than "what is so", of course. This
shows the fine distinction between the concepts "truth" and "useful".

> (Or, as the Christian's have it.... someone eats an apple and
> consequently
> that person, who happens to be the father of all people, eternally damns
> himself and all his descendents (all people) because eating apples is
> how
> one discovers the difference between right and wrong, which we're not
> supposed to have 'in' on..... uh, or some such....)

That isn't QUITE how I read it. I have no idea what the "Most Mutagenic
Food Ever Created" was (Rabbinical tradition is quite favorable about
apples, actually, in historical time frames). Also, the net effect (in a
rigorous Christian frame, not the froth found in too many dying churches)
was to create a partially inverted perceptual map, which is even worse
than straight ignorance. Something like, "Yes, we have the concept now,
and we have no chance of doing the correct classification easily."

/ Towards the conversion of data into information....
/ Kenneth Boyd