To whom can one speak as well as to oneself? True, healthy and effective communication with others and success in life may in large part depend upon the relative nexus between “societally acceptable” “reality” and one’s personal, private perception.
This writing does not deal with the investigative search for truth in the sciences; one can only assume (hopefully) that criteria governing the conduct of scientific exploration are objective and are being faithfully observed.
In the areas of human interaction, differing standards of morality, philosophical thought and recollection of past experiences, result in conflicting views of reality and complicate the search for “truth.” Indeed, such differences as may lead to varying perceptions of reality or,” truth” may be non-productive, and in the worst case, dangerous.
“Where you stand depends upon where you sit” regrettably, is an all too common formulation in the understanding of interpretation of fact and experience. Unfortunately, there would seem in life to be no effective reality except that which impresses itself upon our personal perception.
Is the pasta sauce too hot and spicy or not hot enough? Am I really too busy, or is it my mood? Is he travelling too fast or not? Is he a freedom fighter or an insurgent rebel? Our judgment may depend upon our mood at the time of observation, our interpretation of past experience, and our private biases.
Honest and truthful witnesses, at trial and under solemn oath, may testify to diametrically opposed versions of the material facts of the case; recollected language, employed in a spousal row, may significantly vary as to vocabulary; long ago experience may, upon its retelling, take on a tone and context dependent upon the teller’s worldview.
It is, unfortunately, not true that there is an answer to every problem; no way of looking up the correct answer in the back of the algebra textbook.
This is not to say that there are no difficult problems that can be solved by the application of logic and good sense. For example when p. was a high school student, he won two “chunky bars” by solving the age-old chicken egg question. P. correctly reasoned that the egg came first which egg was laid by the creature that was one step in evolution before the chicken. That hatched egg was the first chicken.
However, most serious problems appear to be not solvable by logic nor empirical demonstration The problem of differences in perception is one of life’s imponderables but one of which every thoughtful person must crucially aware and understand and tolerate.