50 Roads #9 – THE ROAD TO THE UNWANTED TRUTH
Our world is suffering from a TRUTH crisis. So, individually I think lots of us have been suffering from a Truth Crisis of some kind or another, that’s a long road I went down.
I’ve found that you’ll drive yourself mad if you need to know the absolute truth about everything.
But I really thought I needed to know. I thought my life depended on it. So when I set out on my Soul Road quest, I was determined to get to the bottom of what was true.
Here’s a spoiler . . . I still don’t know what’s “true” about so many things – almost nothing in fact. I know that mountains are truth and birds are truth and rivers and lakes and babies and animals are truth. That’s about it.
I have a great hope that lots of other things are true, but I don’t know for sure.
So trying to figure out who was telling the truth about life just about did me in when everything started to unravel – it still does if I spend any amount of time trying to figure that out. My life was feeling the way the world feels right now . . . everyone screaming at once that THEY ARE TELLING THE ONE TRUTH.
That’s why this road is called The Road To The Unwanted Truth — because often we want to find PROOF that everything we think/believe is ABSOLUTE. That if we search hard enough, we will find ONE VERSION that is ABSOLUTELY TRUE. And when we dig deeper and deeper we find something that maybe we didn’t want — that what is true is too complicated to be absolute.
True about WHAT, you ask? Well . . . true about just about anything, but especially the important things — the kinds of things that people use as foundation for every decision they make in their life. When people care about you, they want you to know the truth. So usually, it’s with good intention that we tell each other THE ONE TRUTH. When my disintegration started, all of the different versions of everything were so deafeningly loud. I wanted to know who was telling the truth about LIFE — our world, about religion, education, medicine, politics, relationships, business, what kind of mascara to buy . . .
So much was happening in my own life and in the world at large that didn’t make sense and I just wanted to KNOW FOR SURE what the truth was.
I never got there, I probably never will. And that is okay. Because the truth is complicated.
There are so many things I still don’t understand, there are so many things that I will probably never understand. There are a million things I will never know for sure. And if you’re honest with yourself, there are a million things you will never know for sure.
And when I’m rested and fed and I haven’t been binging on a zillion versions of “facts,” I don’t need to know for sure anymore. I hope you will get to a place where you don’t sacrifice your life and your peace to KNOW FOR SURE about things that will never be entirely revealed to you. There are some things we just have to let go of, there are some things that we just won’t ever understand. I am at peace with not knowing and not understanding all of it, and I want to tell you how I got there.
You see . . . all I can know FOR SURE is what is true from where I am standing at this moment . . . from my point of viewing. All I know is what I can see and feel and touch and taste and experience from my own unique perspective. And someone could be standing just a few feet away from me, or right across from me, and they have a completely different point to view things from. They can see, feel, touch, taste and experience totally different things than I can from where THEY are standing.
Sure, I can trust what someone else tells me. I can listen closely and trust that they are telling me the truth from their perspective. But what happens when people are telling you what they know FOR ABSOLUTE SURE and it’s directly opposite of what someone else you trust just told you?
And what happens when they move over a few feet and suddenly they have a totally different viewing point? And then they know something else for ABSOLUTELY SURE.
It can drive you mad.
Remember in Road #1 when I said that a person can be a hero and a villain in the very same story, depending on who you are talking to and where they are standing? That’s what I’m talking about.
People don’t remember what it’s like to navigate a world full of all different beliefs, perspectives and “personal truth.” I don’t know when this happened to our human family, or how or why. But it’s been a terrifying screenplay to watch over the years, a whole global society turning on each other in the name of TRUTH. It’s happening on large scale to our world and it’s happening on small scale in our own homes and communities. It happened in my own life. It sucks.
I truly believe the one thing that has the potential to destroy our beautiful human family and even the little families of our own homes, is the insatiable and greedy need to be RIGHT at the cost of everyone else being wrong.
Truth is tricky. Let’s look at its definition:
- the quality or state of being true.
“he had to accept the truth of her accusation”
- that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality.
“tell me the truth”
- the fact of the matter
- what actually/really happened
- . a fact or belief that is accepted as true.
“the emergence of scientific truths”
In the same 5 minutes, through the miracle of an internet search, I can find polarized opposite “facts” about just about anything. This “crisis of truth” is truly the greatest threat right now to the vitality and survival of our precious human family.
So let me tell you about a dream I had that I’m turning into a picture book. I will give you a short synopsis and hope that you get the gist. If I could share ONE THING with the world right now…this would be it.
The dream was a story so I will tell it to you now with my rough-draft illustrations, it’s called The Case of the Longest Dinosaur.
THE CASE OF THE LONGEST DINOSAUR
by melody ross
There was a beautiful place with an enormous mountain called Henosis. This mountain was made of stunning canyons with gargantuan boulders and rivers and streams and lakes. There were cliffs that extended high into the sky and also separated the many different terrains of the mountain.
And in between every set of cliffs and canyons, a small village of people had homesteaded.
The people of each village could not see the villages that were on either side of their own cliffs, and so thousands of people were living on Henosis Mountain who had never sat with each other, talked to each other or even seen each other’s part of the mountain.
Maybe they would have traveled to see each other if it wasn’t for the Longest Dinosaur. Her name was Alethia. Lots of people on the mountain called her Letha for short.
Alethia the Dinosaur stretched all the way around the mountain, and made it so that every village’s people could neither get off of the mountain or travel to each other’s villages.
And she just laid there, month after month, year after year. And if you were quiet enough, all you could hear Alethia say is “I’m just doing the work I came here to do.” Though it didn’t look like she was doing any work at all.
Each village was very different from the next, but one thing was the same in every village — they all told stories and legends about the people of the other villages, about Alethia and about what must be beyond her large body.
The stories were scary and so almost no one dared to climb high up the mountain where the only openings to the rest of the mountain existed — at the ends of the canyons and cliffs.
One year something extraordinary happened. A flock of the most beautiful birds showed up and day after day, high in the sky, they would circle the mountain. Every village would see them at sunrise or sunset or somewhere in between. And the children of each village were especially intrigued. After many days, there were children from every village who just HAD TO SEE these birds close up.
So children from every village, without even knowing that the other village’s children were doing it, would start a climb up the mountain, and every one of those children who felt that call ended close to the top . . . and there they were, all together.
At first they were afraid, because the legends and stories made them afraid of each other. But when they saw the birds, and how much every one of them loved those birds, they started stepping closer to each other.
They started telling each other their names.
And then they started talking to each other about Alethiia the Dinosaur.
A girl from one of the villages said “the pointy scales are the hardest part, they cut us when we get too close…”
and all of the other children said “Alethia doesn’t have pointy scales! What are you talking about?”
another child spoke up and said, “I don’t like it when Alethia’s stars stay on all night and keep us awake.”
and again, all of the other children said “What stars? Alethia
doesn’t have stars.”
a boy from one of the villages said “I love it when Alethia lets us slide down her smooth skin.”
and the crowd of children all started to yell at the same time, saying “Why are you lying?” “Why aren’t you telling the truth?” “That is not how it is!!!”
some said “Alethia has blue dots!”
others said “Alethia has orange stripes!”
others said “Alethia has red squiggles!”
and almost all of them said “You are lying! You are a liar! Stop trying to trick us!”
and worst of all….
“this is why we aren’t supposed to ever talk to people like you, we know the legends and the stories! You are all lying!”
…and then the birds came and the children stopped talking to each other or standing by each other, but they all stayed because they wanted to see the birds.
And suddenly the birds started doing beautiful flights in the air, and headed down the mountain. Their acrobatics were so exquisite that the children couldn’t help but follow them. They followed them down a meadow, across a stream and then into the forest that led to one of the villages.
The children who were from that village, the ones who kept insisting that Alethia had red spots, said to the other children grudgingly,
“you can come here to watch the birds but you have to be quiet because we aren’t allowed to talk to you and we don’t want our parents to see us with you….”
and so the children quietly followed the birds through the forest, until they could see through the trees.
And they could see the houses that the people from that village lived in, and just beyond the houses, down Henosis Mountain, they saw Alethia.
And they all fell silent with their mouths wide open as the birds flew toward Alethia. There she was, covered in red spots for all that you could see of her — between the cliffs that separated this village from the rest.
The children of the red spotted village stood looking at the other children and one of the other children said. “He really does have red spots here, I am sorry I called you a liar.”
And after Alethia spotted them she said once again, “I’m just doing the work I came here to do.”
So the children headed back into the forest and sat in a circle and each one said again what Alethia looked like from where they lived.
It was getting late in the day so after they made the plan they came up with, they all headed back to their village to rest so they could meet near the top of the mountain again the next morning.
When morning came, they gathered and headed to the village of the children who said that Alethia had squiggly stripes. They walked together to a safe place where they could see the village from – and sure enough, they saw her squiggly stripes.
They headed to the next village, and the next and the next and the next.
Turns out, every child was telling the truth all along.
“We have to tell our parents!” they said…..
And they tried. And they tried and they tried and they tried. Some of the parents forbade their children from leaving the house after that. Some of them laughed and thought the children were silly. But then some of the parents could not resist their curiosity and asked the children to take them on the trails to see the other villages.
Over several seasons, the most curious parents and children of different villages would run into each other on their treks to find the truth.
And then enough parents from every village made the same plan to walk together to every village to see for themselves.
And it turns out that every parent was also telling the truth. Even though their truths were all very different.
This led to the most beautiful gathering at the VERY TOP of the mountain, where all of the children and all of the parents gathered to talk about the hard parts of living with Alethia and the parts that were good too. They were able to start sharing apples and peaches from the villages where they grew, and milk and cheese from the villages where they grew.
They laughed and danced and told each other stories from years back. They started sharing and enjoying Henosis Mountain. They started LOVING and ENJOYING each other. When they climbed to the very very very top of Henosis Mountain, all together . . . they could see every village all at once.
And they could see ALL of Alethia.
And Alethia could see all of them.
Suddenly, after decades and centuries of Alethia laying around Henosis Mountain, she suddenly stood up.
And she walked away.
And as she walked away, she turned around and said a brand new sentence to the people of Henosis Mountain….
“My work here is done…..”
How long will we let this need to be THE ONE RIGHT ONE keep us from each other. How long will it be before this NEED TO BE RIGHT consumes us and destroys us as a human family?
There are abhorrent sicknesses of the soul and the mind that cause some sick people to LIE, CHEAT, DECEIVE, STEAL and DESTROY all that’s good. But that is not the norm, folks. Most of the people in your life are telling the truth as they see it.
And it’s the hidden dinosaur that is at the root of all of this, not the human family who all live on the same mountain — who all would be so much better off sharing the mountain and their lives with each other.
If you get the chance, take a nice walkabout and see for yourself what someone else is telling you is true ABOUT THEIR OWN EXPERIENCE. It will change your life. It will change their life. It will change the world.
I love you. I know there are parts of your truth that are different than mine. I promise you, human family, that I will keep working hard at trying to truly listen and understand, and whenever I am able, I will walk to your village with you to see it for myself.
All that I ask is that you do the same for me — and everyone else.
So, mountain dweller,
What is this truth that you cling to so tightly that it keeps others away?
What is something that you’ve been calling a lie that’s maybe been the truth all along?
I know these are tough realizations, soul sibling…but they’re the ones that will heal us back together.
Thanks for walking on The Road To The Unwanted Truth, tomorrow we will take the super-fun Road To The Therapist. And the next 10 roads after that are short little roads in my psyche, just a paragraph or two each day for a mental break.
See you there,
p.s. thanks for traveling these roads with me. xo