People can sometimes consider themselves either right or left-brained. If they are right-brained, they are more imaginative, creative, and artistic whereas left-brained people are logical, scientific, and mathematical. I consider myself one of those freaks who are a bit of both.
The right to left spectrum of knowledge, at their most extreme points, are as far different as one gets. Let’s consider the opposites if we can. At the extreme right end, we are left with illusions. Illusions are fake and without any mathematical truth to them. Consider this one:
Now, which side of the staircase is the correct side? Can we even determine the sides of the staircase? I don’t think we can. In conclusion, neither side is right or wrong! This, of course, defies the extreme left side of the knowledge spectrum, which, in example, we will consider as math. Math is absolute. Nothing can defy the equation.
This makes sense to those who know their algebra. There is a concise answer when you do this equation. Everything is absolute and truthful, unlike the crazy, mind-bending elements of optical illusions. So, the question is… is God left or right-brained? Think about it. Does God present a world of absolutes or does God give a world of optical illusions. Is there a world of truth or non-truth. It may be a surprise to you, but this plagues philosophers of all ages in history, even from Socrates.
When Socrates began his philosophical career, he stated that the Athenians around him had built a wall of false knowledge around them. He deconstructed his view and began to question everything to find out what was truth, or if there was even truth at all. Sadly, Socrates did not last long enough to learn of what was truth. However, his influence caused a split between the right and left knowledge spectrums.
Plato, Socrates’ pupil, tended to lean more toward the right end of the spectrum. Granted, he was not so far right as to assume that there was no truth at all, but he believed that there was a part of truth that was above the physical realm and therefore inconceivable unless one spends more time in the mind rather than the universe. This “mind-above-body” assumption we will return to later for further clarification.
Aristotle, who was Plato’s pupil, was very close to simply assuming the left side of the spectrum. In his opinion, the world and the truth could be understood by careful observation. Call it early scientific method if you will. There were some things in this world that are absolute and we can understand it if we pay close attention. This is where we get the Aristotelian science. While Aristotle could not be more wrong in his conclusions, he was the beginning for those philosophers who place the physical (the “world”) above the nonphysical (the “mind or spirit”).
This split in philosophy was later released from popularity when theology (the church and Reformation) came into the picture. Then the Enlightenment came into the frame and everything reversed to the Greco-Roman philosophic battle once again. During this time, most would assume that Aristotle’s worldview became more prevalent, although parts of Plato’s worldview melted into this thought process and brought about the deistic and the secular worldviews of today.
In an attempt to solve this problem, the French philosopher/mathematician Rene Descartes (you will know him by the famous phrase “I think, therefore, I am”). Like Socrates before him, Descartes assume that nothing could be known other than your very existence, which is simply undeniable. Trying to reconcile both ends, he proposed this: that the physical world contains truths, but they can be accessed because man has reason, the upper truth explained by Plato. However, he came to believe that God or anything out of this world cannot touch or fiddle with anything in this world, because that would upset the absolutes in this universe, which obviously cannot be messed with unless you strip absolutes of their absolutism.
This led to Descartes’ problem. If God or anything metaphysical cannot affect this universe, then how can we assume that man’s reason is actually outside of this universe, where it had assumed to be since Plato’s era? Eventually, the mind and reason entered the brain, which is here in this universe, and God was dismissed.
Today, we see an extreme left or right world view in secular culture. Either there is absolute truth or there is no truth at all. Since it is clear that there are absolute truths at least in things such as mathematics, most people lean to the absolutes spectrum. But in that spectrum there is nothing outside of those absolute truths. It’s all here, folks.
But there are things outside of this universe. In the case of morality, the absolutes of this world don’t apply. If you try to make morality absolute by using the absolutes of this world, you wind up with relativism (sounds like morality is similar to an illusion in this world). But ethics do exist, I have met no one who disagrees with me, so Plato was right. There are some absolute things that are above this world. (I explain why morality is relative in secularism here.)
Left with the left-spectrum, we are left with a closed world (that is, one where this is all there is) that contradicts itself in one of the greatest realms. Left with the right-spectrum, we have a completely open world (that is, one where there are things above this universe), but one with no absolute truths in any realm. Neither way by itself works.
I know God has created a left and right world. This explanation allows us to live in a world where we are open to other things, which is great because that allows God to become a man, and one where there are absolutes to all things, not just a few or none. That explains the battle between Platonism and Aristotelianism, the problem of an upper truth versus the lower truths. But the question remains whether God Himself is left or right-brained. My answer is: neither. No lawmaker is the law himself. God created the truths, so He is above those very truths. My opinion is that He is Himself and His nature. It is not thought that makes Him who He is, but He is who He is (Exodus 3:14).