What Do You Hope To See?
“Truth, like gold, is to be obtained not by its growth, but by washing away from it all that is not gold.” — Leo Tolstoy
“I wish to become a teacher of the Truth.”
“Are you prepared to be ridiculed, ignored and starve till you are forty-five?”
“I am. But tell me: what will happen after I am forty-five?”
“You will have grown accustomed to it.”
The short tale by Anthony de Mello symbolises that while we want an authentic connection to our real self, pursuing the Truth may not be the charmed existence we hope for.
Your Truth is the source of all wisdom and every person retains their own. To seek the Truth means seeing past the illusory thoughts of what life should be. “We perceive the world as we are, not as it is,” said the American essayist Anaïs Nin. To see past the mind’s self-constructed bias, be willing to surrender thoughts which perpetuate this distortion.
The Truth is relative to what you observe and what you hope to see. No two people have the same experience, given subjective reality.
It was the late Dr David Hawkins, a renowned psychiatrist and spiritual teacher who wrote in Truth vs Falsehood: How to Tell the Difference: “The human mind, by virtue of its innate structure, is blind to its limitations and innocently gullible. Everyone is the victim of the ignorance and limitation of human ego.”
Living in the material world means being unable to escape the vicissitudes of changes in life. From the moment of conception, you are indoctrinated with rules, beliefs and ideas not of your choosing. I mean that in the nicest possible way — you are at the mercy of those you trust to reason the world for you.
Yet many of these beliefs may remain unchallenged throughout your life if you do not question them. You need only interact with adults who behave in a regressed, child-like state to notice how they perceive the world through an automated lens.
Still, these same people claim to know the Truth: “Everyone secretly believes that their view of the world is correct and any other is wrong. Thereby opinion becomes promoted to ‘ostensible’ fact and pseudovalidity,” states Hawkins.
A State of Emptiness
“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.” — Marcus Aurelius
So what is Truth at its core?
To live the Truth means to live in alignment with your highest self and core values. It means to think and reason the world without other people’s opinions to dominate your choices. Popular culture is lined with the herd mentality espoused through: mainstream music, pop culture, political influences and inauthentic leadership. These are ways in which our minds are suppressed to believe a distorted illusion of what is real.
In his book, Your (Re)Defining Moments, author Dennis Merritt Jones states: “We have to enter into unknowing to discover the truth, because there is no room for unknowing in a mind that believes it already knows the truth.”
Similarly, I am reminded of the Zen teaching: “Like this cup, you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you Zen unless you first empty your cup?” You must empty your mind of false distortions to discover the Truth—a busy mind cannot gain new information when it is overflowing with ideas.
How do you arrive at this state of emptiness?
In another article, I affirmed that everything is relative to the perceiver. For example, you do not see the sun where it is now since it has moved. You see it where it was eight and a half minutes ago, given the Earth’s approximate distance from it. Subjective reality asserts other people’s perception differs to yours since no two people share the same experience.
Who is right?
Who upholds the Truth?
To take a different view, British-born philosopher Alan Watts wrote: “To ‘know’ reality you cannot stand outside it and define it; you must enter into it, be it and feel it.”
You must go beyond the self-created illusion if you wish to penetrate the Truth while letting go of thoughts that no longer serve you.
Speak your Truth, trust your Truth and live your Truth.
Be who you came here to be, irrespective of your religious denominations or cultural beliefs — of Truth at the deepest level. Embody it, even if you take a lifetime to discover, it will have been worth it.
Refuse to be indoctrinated with someone else’s Truth, for those same people are prone to regurgitate knowledge and have nothing new to offer the world. Such distortions will consume you until you honour your Truth and give it life.
Don’t Conform to Popular Opinion
“Great truths are portions of the soul of man.” — James Russell Lowell
The ego creates a false impression of security to consolidate its hold on you. The illusion keeps you from realising your authentic self.
“Truth and Reality are identical and eternally present merely waiting discovery,” affirms Dr Hawkins.
The Truth sets you free since it liberates you from a self-imposed prison inclined to minimise your potential. Your soul’s wisdom is your real connection to your spiritual source; trust this connection to the Truth.
Confront the Truth with certainty, an open mind and a sincere heart. Equally, don’t allow the egoic voice to drown out your inner spirit.
Reason and logic will bargain and banter to convince you the Truth is unattainable; don’t concede to it.
It was the Dutch philosopher Gerardus van der Leeuw who reminds us: “The mystery of life is not a problem to be solved, but a reality to be experienced.”
Embody the Truth in your obligations, whether it be through your thoughts, actions or words. The world needs more original thinkers than naysayers who conform to popular opinion.
The Swiss born author James Blanchard Cisneros wrote: “Once you awaken you will have no interest in judging those who sleep.”
The truth sets you free because it will awaken you to your humanity and liberates you from that which no longer serves your personal evolution.