There are a large number of things the dialectical process has brought us, but the most important, and least recognized, is the movement from a thinking system based on the observation and discovery of facts to thinking system based on the observation of and discovery of relationships. No longer can we speak of an absolute truth; all truth is relative to a particular space and time.
But isn’t this what Einstein, himself, taught us with the theory of relativity? Or is this really what the theory of relativity really teaches? For what relativity really teaches is that time, energy, and space are all relational; before Einstein, these things seemed to be fixed and separate. After Einstein, time can be converted to energy, mass to time, and energy to mass. That we live in a four dimensional world rather than a three dimensional, and that the dimensions are related, rather than independent, is the reason the theory of relativity is called, the theory of relativity.
We expand the theory to the moral world in great peril. As John Loeffler says in a recent Steel on Steel show, we have raised a generation that have learned the lesson of relationship so well, and who have transferred the idea of relationship over absolute existence so completely, that they struggle to understand the idea of truth, or they reject it outright.
If you don’t believe in the existence of the iceberg, then there is no reason to turn the ship. If the only reality, to you, is the relationship, then there is no reason to turn the ship —unless turning the ship somehow impacts the relationship between two people.
What we’ve lost is that our relationships don’t stand just because, that relationships don’t exist in a vacuum. That relationship needs something to stand on.
And that something is truth.
What we’ve lost is that without the ship, and without the iceberg, there is no reason to have a relationship. There is simply no meaning in a relationship unless there is an underlying truth, or object in view. If there is no trip, there is no helm, there is no lookout, and there is no reason for the non-existent helm and lookout to speak. Unless we’re all just “playing house” to begin with.
And yet, that almost seems to be the way it is, doesn’t it? Here we have a generation that really doesn’t get married, they just play house. They really don’t get jobs, they just play work.
We need to recover the underlying concepts of truth here, and to understand that unless there is a deck under our feet, there no place on which to stand at an equal and have a relationship.