Three Types of Proofs of the Truth – Factual, Logical and Existential

Truth is an intellectual integrity issue…, an ethical issue. We should be teaching our children how to determine what is true. It depends on evidence. Without evidence, anything goes… And that’s why there is a conflict between science and dogma, both political and religious. Texas is desecrating science books… John F. Kennedy said, “The Great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie – deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth – persistent, persuasive and unrealistic. Belief in myths allows the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.”
Harold Kroto, 1996 Nobel Price Laureate in Chemistry

The factual proof is concerned with the existence or non-existence of certain things or events which we try to prove or disprove. For example, the presence or absence of WMDs in Iraq as a reason for going or not going to war, or Saddam‘s alleged connection with 9/11, or President Obama’s American citizenship. It is easy to lie about factual truth in a situation of uncertainty about the existence or non-existence of matters in question but also when people are ready to believe in the existence of some things and not of others. “Scientists have enemies now out there who are trying to destroy science… it is not just against evolution. It’s about truth… It’s about how children and adults should determine what is true… You have the enemies who want to undermine the ability of young people and adults to find out what is actually true, on the basis of evidence.” (Harold Kroto, “Treat Science Right and it could help save the World”, Science News, August 28, 2010, p. 32)

The question of logical truth comes up when the factual truth is not available. For example, the presence or absence of the danger of Iran’s nuclear attack on any neighboring country. It is possible to argue that no one government can be as insane as to make a nuclear attack when it is obvious that, as Hillary Clinton said with a loud certainty, they will be erased in retaliation. This kind of logical intimidation (deterrence) worked for decades with the Soviet government.

Much more psychologically interesting proof is an existential one. And it is used with three kinds of objects of truth claims: objects of our beliefs in supreme value (God, religion, political ideologies, countries, races and nations), people we love, and situations of closeness to death. In relation to what we deeply believe in, or to people we love, or to experiences when we are near death or are ready to sacrifice ourselves, existential truth is more important than factual or logical truth. Here, the proof of the truth of something comes to us by the very passion of our experiences which we consider as much more important as a validation of truth than any factual or logical proofs. In other words, when we believe in or encounter something what we consider very important for our soul and heart, we are prone to take our experience itself as an ultimate proof of the truth of the object we face. The war here is an ultimate example – that’s why religious, ideological and inter-racial or inter-national wars are the most irrational, the most voluntaristic and passion driven. But the most amazing feature of war is that even if the war is not obviously religious or patriotically cathected, the fact that we are in danger of being killed by the enemy serves as war’s self-validation. The spilled blood has power to justify any war. It serves as an ultimate proof that we are right to be in war, that we have a right to revenge and to reach victory.

Even if it is we who started war, the fact that we have casualties from our battles with the enemy justifies the war in our eyes. Here we can be very close to the understanding of how BCR (Bush Jr., Cheney and Rumsfeld trio) were planning the invasion of Iraq. Even people of limited intellect and education can have an instinctive grasp of how masses react on wars and intuitively use this knowledge for achieving their goals. When war is started it gets a (self-validating) capability to justify itself. War itself becomes its own reason. With each American killed or wounded the population became less and less interested in the factual or logical proofs of Iraq war’s legitimacy and necessity. That’s, probably, why “deciders” were so rushing to start the war. And that’s why the war in Afghanistan is so long and will even be much longer – even low intensity wars are self-legitimizing. Once the people get involved in war they want to go all the way to the victorious end. For visceral politicians like BCR to start war is the easiest thing possible because they feel that war cares about itself – they are assembled with war-making like Vladimir Lenin was in tune with the very organism of revolution. The longer war lives on the more mass people feel that its escalation is necessary.

For example, to start a new war with Iran or Venezuela doesn’t demand any responsibility – wars go on with its own energy. Only for democratic politicians the responsibility for starting a war and concerns over its consequences are important. For the neo-conservative ones – the practitioners of globalist wars, people whose soul is in tune with the very organism of war-making, it is not a problem. For them war is like a green light – the path to victory – victories are sweet and rewarding not only emotionally but materially too. So, why not to play violent video-games of wars? The more victims war brings the more people will support it and join the call of the banner.