Faith Journal

2016- The Year of “Post-Truth”

2016- The Year of "Post-Truth" www.herviewfromhome.com

2016 is almost over. I can hardly believe it. Leaves are changing which signifies that a new season of cooler temps is upon us. Christmas music is starting to play on radio stations everywhere announcing peace on earth and goodwill towards men. And I have to wonder if we tried even a little this past year to acknowledge those weighty words in our daily lives?

How much peace and goodwill is really spilling out of our mouths, out of our doorsteps, and into the homes of our neighbors down the street and across the miles? I have to wonder… is this just a passing, familiar phrase that we sing once a year without much regard to what it means?

While I’ve been pondering this thought, an article from the Washington Post released the news that the word “post-truth” is named 2016’s word of the year by Oxford Dictionaries. And my heart sank as it floundered under this revolting news.  

Oxford Dictionaries claims that post-truth symbolizes “circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.”  So, we have become more self focused than ever as our pursuit for truth is justified only by how this so-called truth makes us feel. I think I’ve heard this ridiculous sentiment somewhere before… oh yeah, “If it feels good, do it.” Sound familiar? I guess, in this case, we should say, If it feels good, believe it to be true.

My question, therefore, is “Since when did my extremely common yet highly unreliable feelings do anything for me?” I mean, if we’re going to start basing our truth on what is popular today (i.e., believe that your feelings can lead you down the right track ) then we might as well consider how far popularity actually gets us. If I remember correctly, the All Star quarterback in high school didn’t have much to go on when he realized that the rush he felt from being Mr. Popular couldn’t do a darn thing for him out in the real world. He either had real, solid truth to pull from when that rug got pulled out from underneath him or he held onto the feelings that his glory days gave him as he drank beer in his mama’s basement. Hence the dilemma.

Why are we letting our search for truth be dictated by the media and pop culture? Why have our reactions to this past year’s low moments been memorialized with this hell of a word? Post-truth? Really?

Shouldn’t we be more focused on the peace on earth and goodwill to men thing? Just putting it out there, but MAYBE, this attitude adjustment could actually lead us to the unchanging, not dependent on our foolish human nature kind of truth.  The kind of truth that is rock solid and doesn’t leave us high and dry when the next wave of popular post-truth flies in and out before we can even blink.

Personally, I’m over all of it. The popular words of today will one day be forgotten and buried under new, more trendy conversation. But the one thing that will always stay the same is the infallible word of God (also known as the Bible.) The truth that isn’t based upon emotion or popularity but actually goes so far as to not conform to this world. That kind of truth isn’t liked by the masses unfortunately because it is saturated in God’s uncompromising glory and not the “look at me” self-promoting kind of our own making.  

The payoff is worth it though. Peace on earth is only possible through the lens of this truth. Goodwill towards men will never happen if based upon our foolish feelings. We have to promote the real truth and kick that imposter called post-truth to the curb.

Let’s start a revolution, shall we? The real thing is always the right choice. Even if it doesn’t feel like it.

John 17:17-  “Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.”

About the author

Harmony Vuycankiat

Harmony is a proud Air Force wife and blessed mother of 4 children. Her heart’s cry is to love without limits and live without regrets. She plans to use her criminal justice degree to tangibly help marginalized women and children all over the world. Writing, singing, and running are her methods of soul therapy and Starbucks coffee is her happy juice. The quote that she lives by is, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I’ve used everything you gave me.’ ” (Erma Bombeck)

  • I love this, Harmony. I felt the same way when I saw the “word of the year.” It may sound trendy to be “post-truth,” but you’re so right—it’s selfish and ungiving in a world that desperately needs giving!

  • Parul

    What the books tell us is not what we need to know. We need to know what we experience and deal with. The truth has to be ours and so is the word.