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Desiring Truth: The Fate of Knowing in a Post-Truth Era

We live in a time in which not a single truth seems settled. Our inability to agree on the actual facts (rather than “alternative facts”) has brought us to an “epistemological crisis.” Why are we in this predicament, what can we do about it? Drawing from a wide range of philosophical and interreligious resources, I argue that we must turn to desire, its distortions, and its healing before we have any shot at arriving at the truth. Not the claims of objectivity but the intensification of our desire for truth is the key to emerging from our present morass.

John J. Thatamanil is associate professor of Theology and World Religions at Union Theological Seminary. He is author of Circling the Elephant: A Comparative Theology of Religious Diversity and the newly-appointed diocesan theologian.

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