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Wanted: The Truth!


I haven’t posted anything for a while, because frankly, there is so much going on in the world to try to understand. (See: ‘Fiscal Cliff’, Sandy Hook Elementary) And like a puppy chasing butterflies I can’t seem to remain focused on one target. But I do want to share one thought that has become increasingly evident the more I aspire to learn: the truth is jacked up.

There is so much we “know” to be true. What our parents tell us, what our teachers tell us, what our friends tell us, what the man in the suit on TV tells us. It all funnels in through our ears and eyes with a slight filter of our own editing.  And it is gospel. No one had dare challenge our truth. If they do, they are ignorant! How dare anyone say that their religion is better than mine, that their political party is the best, that their sports team is the greatest ever, or that their mom’s meatballs have more flavor?! How dare they!

I am just as guilty as the next guy for this line of thinking. It’s human nature to want to always be right and have the upper hand over your fellow man. My discovery however, is that what is true is much less cut and dry than how we may see it. For instance, there is the ever dominant divide between Republicans and Democrats in our country. Many people are gun-ho one way or the other, towing the party line no matter what. I know I certainly was. What they don’t realize and I now do is that neither side is perfectly right, nor completely wrong in their general opinions. Some things Democrats are correct on, and some issues Republicans have right. Many times both of them couldn’t be more off. This is just one example but that’s how it goes with so many of the “truths” we know in our lives.

The fact of the matter is that the truth is often very complicated. It can not and should not be over simplified. Granted, simple truths are abundant but these are readily evident and easy to confer. (See: Gravity, 2+2=4, etc) Our job as American citizens, the supposed freest thinking people on earth, is to challenge what we know. Challenge your faith, your political party, your history teacher and even your mom’s special meatball sauce. The idea in challenging them isn’t to discredit them. Instead, by challenging them one of two things will happen. Either A) you will discover that some of the things you believe are less than true, or B) you will be better able to defend and understand why you believe what you do. By doing this, and doing it often, you will constantly winnow away excess “knowledge” and be able to discern for yourself  what is truth…and what is not.

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