Objectivity and subjectivity

The two are inextricably linked

July 14th 2023

If someone who is telling you about an event or a scene that they have witnessed interposes their own point of view, feelings or impressions, you will not get a clear picture of what really happened. This is why you ask them to report only what they actually saw or heard: the people concerned, what they said or did, the objects, time and distances involved, exactly as though it had been filmed or recorded on tape. However, in asking them to confine themselves to the purely material, objective reality, you are asking them to speak of only one aspect of what happened, and this means that their report is necessarily incomplete. So in the end, you know no more about the exact reality than when the person was being subjective. Human beings are more than an external form or a series of words and gestures; they possess an intangible inner life that emanates and spreads all round them, and if you neither see nor feel that life, and are incapable of describing or explaining it, you will miss a large part of the truth.*

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