In search of truth

Why are we searching for the truth?

From the point of view of a clinician, citizens/ patients assume that we doctors know everything about medicine which is not exactly correct to start with. The doctors do not necessarily admit this with patients.

For example when we want to find a simple daily BP norms for a patient different societies or guidelines will recommend different values looking at the same evidence. Therefore it is not easy for the primary care physician to decide even on a daily routine simple measurement at what point to start pharmacological treatment. The upper limit keep decreasing almost every year. The same happens with blood glucose, cholesterol, eGFR etc.

We assume that certain organizations represent at least in matters of guidelines the unbiased opinion. One such organization was the Cochrane Collaboration. What happened to CC makes us think twice of about the collaboration’s reputation for rational opinion.

Therefore even from a perspective of a primary care doctor we will be questioning what is the correct decision I have to make for this patient in front of me?

Looking from a different point

What is the truth?

Is truth relative or absolute?

How can we find the truth?

Can we do this individually, each of of us? Better in a group? Can religion or philosophy help?

This brings me to the same point going back to 2500 years ago. Buddha was travelling in India, and the village called Kesaputta, the Kalama people asked Buddha almost the same question – Whom are they to believe? the holy person who came came during the last month or the month before etc or now Buddha?

Although Buddha did not give a direct answer he suggested a method for the Kalama’s to tryout. Its called the Kalama sutta and is known as Buddha’s charter for free thinking

Original translation

Resource 2

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