All serious Atheists, Deists, Theists, Pantheists, Physicists and Macro-Evolutionists are equally RIGHT about one common belief:
The purpose of life is to seek and find the truth.
They can all agree on that. It is their one common denominator. Truth. It all boils down to that. Not emotions. Not thoughts. Emotions can’t always be trusted; thoughts can’t always be trusted. Truth can always be trusted.
Yet the unique, unshared fundamental and foundational beliefs of each of these worldviews can’t all be RIGHT!
The laws of logic rule out that possibility. Specifically the Law of non-contradiction, which states mutually exclusive beliefs cannot both be true at the same time and in the same sense.
For example, Deists, Theists and most Physicists believe the Universe had a beginning, whereas Atheists, Pantheists and most Macro-Evolutionists believe the universe is static and eternal with no beginning and no end.
They can’t both be true!
So, why are there are so many conflicting beliefs and opinions about what is true? And since thinking something is true doesn’t make it true, how does anyone know what they think is really true and not a mistake, bigotry or wishful thinking?
The first and most important factor is Intellectual Honesty.
We must be willing To Follow the Evidence Where it Leads. To follow the process of RIGHT thinking wherever it takes us.
No matter how much we may want it otherwise 2 + 2 = 4. You can’t do that without Intellectual Honesty.
How do we know we are RIGHT?
First we have to look at the process itself that is used to arrive at any conclusions we may have.
1) We observe the world around us (induction).
2) That observation prompts development of a thought (premise)
3) Then that thought leads logically to another thought (2nd premise).
4) These premises then lead to a conclusion (deduction).
Our minds go through a primitive version of this process every moment of our lives without our ever knowing it explicitly.
An automatic process much like breathing that none of us can stop. You cannot safely cross the street without it! Without it you would be dead by now!
The accuracy of this process can be improved by explicitly understanding how it works and by confirming the process was followed without error.
We are RIGHT when our conclusions result from a process that is logically valid and true. Following are three simple examples of that process:
1st Premise: All Englishmen were and are philosophers
2nd Premise: Socrates was an Englishman
Conclusion: Therefore Socrates was a street sweeper
-The premises are inductively false.
-The conclusion is logically invalid
-The conclusion is inductively false separate from the premises
1st Premise: All students at Sonoma State are men
2nd Premise: John goes to Sonoma State
Conclusion: John is a man.
-The first premise is inductively false.
-The conclusion is logically valid
-The conclusion is inductively true separate from the premises