Philosophy and the Areas of Truth

Philippe Capelle-Dumont


This paper analyses the concept of truth, highlighting the various areas of truth. They can be counted four: a philosophical truth, a scientific truth, a theological truth and an aesthetic truth. The article focuses on the relationship of the philosophical truth with science and its relationship with theology.
The relationship of science and truth is defined as “hesitation”, and this description allows not only to define the specifics of scientific truth, but also look for the relationship with the Greek philosophical concept of truth, interpreted through Heideggerian prism. After excluding R. Rorty’s definition as completely incompatible with the concept of scientific domain specificity, A. C. Crombie’s “scientific thinking styles” theory and I. Hacking conclusions are analysed. However, the key link between the scientific truth and the philosophy is shown through once formulated idea of clear obscurity (clair obscur) by Aristotle idea that might explain the Greek perception of truth. Heidegger’s suggested interpretation of Greek concept of truth (Aletheia) allows to determine the relationship between scientific and philosophical truths areas.
Heidegger’s approach is also taken as a starting point in defining the relationship between philosophical truth and theology. However, the proposed model is rejected, as the German philosopher was unable to discern authentic thinking in a peculiar area of theology. Searching for truth in theological specificity and its relationship to philosophical thinking, the article analyses texts by Derrida, St Augustine and Rosenzweig. Reflecting on the concept of religion Derrida defined two conceptual groups those of innocence and of faith. Their connection, which inevitably leads to God figure as an absolute guarantor of salvation, forms an essential part for the conditions of faith encompassing knowledge structures. Derrida’s thinking is corrected and supplemented by Augustine’s reflections on “vera religione” concept, however, after identifying the Hegelian truth development in time process, the emphasis is placed on Rosenzweig’s primordial not-knowing about the world, the God and the idea of man. The latter is associated with the Christian point of view stemming from love and is the best medium for determination of philosophical and theological truth relations.
In conclusions the issue of originality and possible unification of each area of truth is discussed. Each “area of truth” finds in the opposite area a motive for seeking of its own truth: faith, methodical examination or questioning versatility.


truth; philosophy; science; theology; Heidegger; religion; Derrida; Rosenzweig

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"Societal studies" ISSN online 2029-2244 / ISSN print 2029-2236