18 Jan Timeless Truth in the Age of Fake News
by Dr. Katherine Koonce, Head of School
There’s been a lot of news about news lately—fake news, that is. I find it sad that perfectly intelligent people spend good time, energy, and talent to create fake news. Nevertheless, we find ourselves in the Age of Fake News when it’s now more difficult than ever to tell what’s truly true.
Of course, mimisinformations nothing new. It’s surely been going on since the dawn of communication between humans, in one form or another. But I worry in this age of rampant miscommunication, that our children, our students, are not equipped to discern the fake news from the Truth. One of our main responsibilities as the adults in their lives is to teach them how to discern fact from opinion, real from make-believe, true from false.
But before we can do this, we have to teach them that there is such a thing as truth. There is truth that is true regardless of how I feel about it. There is truth that is true regardless of the consequences of it. There is truth that is true no matter what century I live in, what country I inhabit, or what religion I practice. If I am ignorant of the reality of truth, I might work all my life to have reality conform to me – and it never will.
We call these truths “timeless truths” at our school. Everything we know and learn has some timeless truth embedded within it. For example, when our Kindergarteners are in their Pumpkin unit, they learn the timeless truth that if you plant pumpkin seeds, you’re going to grow pumpkins – in other words, you reap what you sow. That’s the truth. When our upper level students are studying the laws of nature, they recognized that there are limits to the natural world and that those limits create possibilities – the conduction of electricity, the creation of bonds, the lifecycle of a butterfly. Life, death, regeneration – these are cycles set in motion by God Himself and so will always be true.
Truth is not always obvious – we have to search for it sometimes, as one might search for treasure. Because, in fact, it is treasure. So much more than simply bucking up and accepting the harsh realities of life, embracing God as the author of all Truth is more like an exquisite dance. We must teach our children this dance, because God simply is. And that’s the truth.