Matter of Opinion?
you say, your going to tell us what reality is???? Seems
to me, that's just a matter of opinion.
We've all heard this said, probably more than once, probably even said it
ourselves: "It's just a matter of opinion." Could
be true. Or not. But so what?
The problem is when facts are presented to
us, but others claim they are NOT facts but just an opinion, in
which case we can choose not to believe them and instead believe
something else. People can and do use this to obscure
reality, lead us to think what we've been told is only an
opinion, and worse than that, that we are free to hold any
opinion we wish, because it will be just as valid as the
"opinion" we've been told NOT to believe.
We think that in our pursuit of reality, we need to
know what the matter of opinion is all about and how it can be
misused, just as we need to
know what biases are and how to deal with them.
Of course, we're not actually
going to tell you what reality is. Our intent here (on
this page and throughout this website) is to
discuss actual facts and share ways to analyze them in the effort to see
What's a fact?
We need to start with this.
1. something that actually exists; reality; truth:
Your fears have no basis in fact.
2. something known to exist or to have happened:
Space travel is now a fact.
3.a truth known by actual experience or observation; something
known to be true
In other words, a fact is not an opinion.
When we say that when released from our hand a rock will drop to
the ground, we are stating a fact, not an opinion. We pick
up a rock, we hold it. We release it. It falls to
the ground. That's a fact. We don't just believe
that will happen.
matter of opinion definition:
noun: opinion; plural
1. a belief, view or judgment formed about something, not
necessarily based on fact or knowledge, sometimes rests on
grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty.
2. a personal view, attitude, or appraisal.
words, an opinion is more subjective than objective. It
may be directed at factual knowledge, but it is NOT the factual
all a matter of opinion.
people who hold this opinion about opinions. They hold
that everything humans say, or perceive is subjective, so it all
is a matter of opinion. Yes, it's similar to saying that
reality is just in the eye of the beholder, but it doesn't say
reality isn't out there. It just says that whatever we say
reality is is just an opinion on our part.
surprise you to know that we don't entirely disagree. Why not?
Because if EVERYTHING we see and say is just opinion, it doesn't
make any difference to call it that. You see, for
something to matter, it has to be differentiated. In other
words, we define things by inclusion and exclusion, we say what
something is and what it is not. If everything is opinion,
there is nothing we can say that is not opinion, and the concept
becomes useless. Unless, that is, we look at...
basis of our opinions
If you look
above at the definition of opinion, the key elements of this
concept are certainty and the degree of factual support.
What this means is that, even if everything is a matter of
opinion, there is an opportunity to differentiate: We can talk
about the degree of certainty based on factual evidence.
So some opinions are more uncertain and speculative, while
others are more certain and based on fact.
So, just as
we understand that biases can underpin everything, we
acknowledge the presence and pervasiveness of opinion, even as
it applies to what we say here. But this can't and doesn't
stop us. Why, because we maintain that there is factual
information that we can see, no matter how imperfectly, and that
we should not give up on gathering the facts and trying to make
sense of them. In other words, some opinions are better
having said that, it is our opinion that there are times on this
website when we can and should offer speculative material, when
it helps to share an opinion about a topic. SO when we
have crossed the line into belief and uncertainty, we will flag
it. And if you find something you think we missed, please
let us know your opinion <grin> about our opinion! Thanks.
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science page if that's how you got here
go to the brief introduction to intentional efforts to obstruct, or avoid reality
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