#13: Truth

By arriving at ideology and false consciousness, we thereby arrive at the question of truth, a question the history of philosophy has quite impressively muddled up with repressed nervous energy, as we will show.

If we understand Truth to be “that which really is the case” beyond contingent and arbitrary appearances, it becomes perfectly clear according to our model that in some sense, _there is only falsity. _That is, the generation and persistence of things, including maps or ensembles of word-things, cannot escape determination by arbitrary distributions of things across ensembles possessing no other positive sanction than a persistence into which, strictly speaking, they randomly stumbled at every stage. All things are false because every existing thing is only a component in a durable ensemble of things spun from some unknown and unknowable contingent point of a strictly random flux. Of course, all language is equally false because word-things are no more endorsed by anything other than similarly multi-staged but random persistances.

In fact, if what we want from our maps of existence is the map of that which “really” is the case beyond contingent and arbitrary appearances, we must run as fast as we can away from all inherited language, even if we will have no choice but to loop back into it for the purpose of making any sense or having a human audience. For, as we have shown, language from the beginning is not just raised and nurtured throughout every stage of its life by an arbitrary distribution of things, but that the most evolutionarily-fit formations of language—true statements, in other words—will be those that strengthen, flatter, confirm, integrate, i.e. accelerate back toward the ensemble that randomly emits the energy constituting them. Thus, if we are interested in what is “really” the case, almost all language at any point in time is interesting mostly as an index of what is not the case at all. Just as contracts do not represent trust, but testify to a lack of trust. Just as a philosophical “system” does not represent the integrity of a philospher’s thought but testifies precisely to the insufficiency of integrity freely developed. Language, similarly, has never had and could never have the function of capturing or reflecting that which “really” is, but rather it testifies only to that which is fictionally. If language testified to what really is, it would testify to nothing (as in the language of Socrates) and be killed off (as in the fate of Socrates).

However, as we could not help but observe in passing, there certainly seems to exist such a thing as true statements. So long as we understand what is meant by deploying a small t, then of course, truth exists. The thing called truth is best represented in logic. It is a closed system that internally coheres, the syllogism. So long as premises are stated, we can deduce from them implications that are formally, strictly, truly true.

But of course, it is obvious and well-known that the formal truth of logic says nothing of the content of the premises. In other words, the philosophical discipline known as logic—just like evolutionary theory, physics, electrical analysis, and any other discipline we will continue to exhume insofar our investigation continues to both justify and demand it—is just another metaphor for the structure of things, ideologically inflected by its own place in the division of intellectual labor. What is the syllogism other than a closed loop that, as pure form, consists by design in no-thing other than a beginning (major premise) that extends itself (minor premise) only to loop back into itself (conclusion)?

Cite this post: RIS Citation BibTeX Entry

Murphy, Justin. 2012. "#13: Truth," http://jmrphy.net/blog/2012/09/10/31301165393/ (April 24, 2017).