Tok Essay

1435 Words Sep 6th, 2013 6 Pages
New TOK Essay
Topic 3: There are no absolute distinctions between what is true and what is false. Discuss this claim.

I’d always believed that the truth was a rather simple idea. To me, it was something that was true or correct or existing in this world. But after all the discussions in TOK, with family and with friends, and after deep rumination on the subject, I’ve realized that’s it’s a much more broad, complex and often mind-boggling concept. However, now I see that there are essentially three main factors that lead us to accepting something as the truth: a strong emotional belief, our senses (particularly sight) and applied logic and reasoning. These are in fact three of the ways of knowing. Language is used to aid the acceptance
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I was surprised to learn that even this equation is not an absolute truth. It is relative to what it is applied to. The equation 1 pencil + 1 pencil = 2 pencils certainly holds, but that’s only because I’ve applied it to pencils. It does not hold when applied to substances such as sand. Similarly, in Chemistry we have learned that there are certain properties of matter that always hold regardless of the situation. However, when I attended the Advanced Space Academy program last summer, I learned that certain properties of matter change in space. As such, one of the main reasons astronauts frequently go to space is to conduct research with these new properties to develop solutions to problems on earth. Thus, properties of matter are not absolute but in fact relative to the environment within which the matter is part of. In different environments, such as earth and space, the properties of matter will differ. Even for the second factor, which often seems to be true without any conditions (and hence absolute), the truth is in fact always relative to some particular condition.
Consider this hypothetical situation: Right now, I am looking at a table in front of me. I can see the table in front of me, I can feel it and I can hear it if I knock on the wood. Is the table in front of me? Yes of course, 3 of my senses tell me that it’s in front of me and unless I’m in a virtual simulator of some sort, no one can deny that the

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