I wrote this earlier on this site, and do so again now: It is a parody of a take on truth I learned from my elder
What I say is not THE truth, but it is A truth, and it is my truth
My father (dead now god bless him) was also a man of paraphrases/affirmations/wisdoms, call em what you like.....
And I have recognized in recent times that folks that speak these wisdoms as absolutes, though often well meaning, are in my thinking inviting the listener to absolve their freedom to think and reason in favour of accepting another’s wisdom as absolute.
My thinking is that this is a dangerous business, and leads to much misery. I Look back and ask myself how often I used a variety of coercions that included threat, misinformation, pleading, expulsion, manipulation, and various expressions of utter certainty to secure my message with those around me......
I think for my part that all humans are equal before God, all have an equal right to be heard. I am thinking that if my views are as equal before god to another’s then I must learn how to express my view and respect those others, especially those others that contradict or challenge my sense of ‘rightness’
How well do I truly listen to and validate another’s point of view, and then internalize it and give it equal consideration? Not often enough I would guess.
Instead I look back and found myself imparting some wonderful nugget of wisdom, based upon experience, or increasingly often passed on from some other, with my own little bit of tailoring just to complete it. Spoken to friends, neighbors, workmates, family members, community and business associates all worthy recipients for my 'wisdom of the week/day/hour'.But did that earn them my ear?
I have two thoughts about this process
Once I foisted my wisdoms and certainties on the masses, and used all of my skills to persuade them to the safe coral of my rightness.....what happened when I changed my mind?
I don't know about you but my mind can change on any given topic about a hundred times a day, so what did this do to my certainty, what did it mean to the receivers mind which I am guessing was as liable to change as mine? (more in a bit......)
Having imparted the certainty of wisdom, how receptive was I to the 'equal before god' rightness of all those I shared with, to giving them equal billing and receptivity, to giving their view a fair hearing, most especially if it were diametrically opposed (as outlined above)
Tis my thinking that I rateD how much attention I gave to another’s views depending on a number of factors that included.......how congruent the view was with mine, how well that others view was received by the community around, the perceived wisdom of the other.
A huge chunk seemed based in ‘past experience’ I figure I went with what ‘lizard’ thought safest, oh and about a million other factors that varied on a moment by moment basis according to the state of my 'mind'
SO HOW ABOUT THIS ONE...........
'About 90% of what people say is a lie all of the time'
This was one of my father’s great postulations, and initially as an adolescent I guess, looking back, I just accepted its rightness. Then after some years of dispensing this 'rightness' like some medication I guess I must have changed my mind, cos I stopped dispensing.
Then recently after starting to see in both myself and people around me what appeared to be an obvious gap between my perception of another’s truth and their heartfelt telling of that truth, I got to thinking about what my father might actually have meant.
As a lad I think I sensed some of his frustrations, both with himself, and with those around him, I sensed what he may have meant when so often he said ‘Ignore me I’m talking crap’ or was equally odious and seemingly disregardful of others….. I think perhaps he was tuning in to that incongruity between what is said and what is meant, or wanted to be meant, and what is a ‘truth’.
''THE VANITY OF MY EGO KNOWS NO BOUNDS. CONSCIOUSLY OR UNCONSCIOUSLY I USE ALL OF THE MAGICS AND TALENTS I CAN BEND TO MY WILL TO DEFEND THE MEREST OF MY EGO'S WHIMS. AND UPON THE MOMENT OF MY DEEPEST DECEPTION IN PROTECTION OF MY EGO'S VAIN STAIN, SO SHALL I FORGIVE MYSELF THE LIE, TROUBLING INSTEAD TO WARRANT THAT ONCE MORE MY DECEPTION BE VALID IN MY DEFENCE OF MY SENSE OF SELF..........DAVID JACKMAN''
So that I guess is what I am thinking my dad might have meant……
Was he frustrated with his communications, with himself and with those around him, when folks would impart their truth as little more than a thinly disguised deception in protection of self.....
For my part I imagine that it takes a huge amount of practice to grow through open vulnerability, to practice reviewing and stepping away from that learned habit of (tis my phrasing only) ‘saying what protects my current vanity the best and stating it with conviction’.
My friend and elder Al records someone once writing him with the thought that there were two answers from her to any question. The short answer (often demanded by the impatient questioner) and the true answer.......(often times a more considered response)
I wonder therefore if equally there may be two truths to any utterance.
The truth as I actually believe it to be (at any given moment in my life)
The truth that best protects my perception of myself (ego/vanity/fear child) at any given moment..... If so then I will learn to speak only my best truth, and watch that other float on by. More importantly still to lsiten, and let others choose how to share their rightness......
Now remember 'tis only my thinking, and whilst I enjoy congruence, after all it suggests safety, increasingly I welcome disagreement cos that is how I learn'
The reason I talk to myself is because I’m the only one whose answers I accept.”
If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything....
Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened
The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can't be any large-scale revolution until there's a personal revolution, on an individual level. It's got to happen inside first.
The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it...
Above all, don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love
“So you're always honest," I said.
"No," I told him. "I'm not."
"Well, that's good to know, I guess."
"I'm not saying I'm a liar," I told him. He raised his eyebrows. "That's not how I meant it, anyways."
"How'd you mean it, then?"
"I just...I don't always say what I feel."
"Because the truth sometimes hurts," I said.
"Yeah," he said. "So do lies, though.”