Let's say the situation of "subject observes object" is denoted by S -> O
Now let S1 -> (S -> O) be a subject observing the situation of another subject observing an object whereby the situation has itself become a object of observation described by O2 = S ->O
It’s unclear to me: Why does O2 represent S - > O? No problem with that per se, just wonder because I don’t see it used anywhere else.
Now with the above nomenclature established, let's consider this situation:
T -> (Sn -> (S2 -> (S1 -> (S -> O))) where T = absolute truth because it is the one thing that is not itself observed, but because it cannot be both observed and absolute at the same time, it therefore can never be an object of knowledge (or object of anything).
What are your thoughts on this?
Hmmm. Interesting proposal, S. First thought: the statement, “[absolute truth] cannot be both observed and absolute at the same time” I take to be true only from the perspective of the subjects (assuming human subjects), not—or not necessarily—from the standpoint of actuality. I see no reason why T could not actually fail to be observed yet be absolute at the same time outside of apprehension. In fact, that we’re able to sense the propriety or logic of an absolute suggests to me that this reality is available just on the basis of it being apprehended information. I hold that anything the mind is able to apprehend has reality of some sort
. A unicorn is a construct taken from certain aspects of really existing things: horse and horn from the material, magical powers conveyed from and as a feature of the spiritual realm, where things like miracles would be spiritual realities that occasionally “pop through” into the material sphere or within grasp of sensory experience. Such experiences seem to matter-grounded human minds like magic, so it seems natural that we shape the nearly unseen spiritual into mysterious magical happenings in our spatiotemporal reality and apply them to our fictions.
But to the matter of why (assuming all S->O situations are cases of humans engaged in perception of some set of circumstances) we aren’t able to unite with T [except on a very distant or diminutive sense, this I think is adequately explained by the idea that human essence is fragmentally falsified. This state of falsification is exemplified in the Bible in Deut 5:23-26 and other places, where the fear of hearing God’s voice is a metaphor for the severe resistance between absolute Truth and falsity in human spirit. Falsification acts as a ‘darkening agent’ of the mind by way of the spirit [essence]. It creates ignorance of, dumbs us down, to prescriptive matters. Think of the old time newspaper print where shades of gray were created by admixtures of white and black dots. Imagine the human soul similarly salt-and-peppered with white (true) and black (false) informational elements. (Essence and universals aren’t easily found in time and space, [though easier if you accept tropes] but like matter, essence and attributes reveal themselves in the mind as information, and information carries meaning. If something has meaning, it has existence of some sort imo.)
If we use a ‘thing (A)-attribute (B)’ model of reality, truth is a “value condition” of existence as a fundamental feature of both A and B. B seems to play out in human perception naturally: ought, ought not, good, evil, etc. As creative beings, we assign our own truth to certain areas of life—laws, standards, rules, etc.—all of which are impermanent and mutable. Material truths have little power to affect intellect. Tell someone 6+6=8 and little if any offense occurs. Tell the same person she’s fat and ugly and observe a more robust set of reactions. Prescriptive truth is the powerful one.
Sorry, I digress. To my thinking, saying absolute truth is outside human perception and common existence is just acknowledgement that God mercifully places Himself [for the most part, not entirely] out of sight. Absolute truth is a roaring fire to the kindling of falsity, which is one of the most commonly taught metaphoric principles in the OT. This I think answers in some sense at least your last question:
Also, if it's true that absolute truth cannot be known, what would that fact suggest about the knower in relation to that unknowable absolute?