I’ve had a rough year so far. It’s been a clusterfuck to be quite frank. My trust in those I trusted most is all but gone. Where I thought I could find balanced discourse with wise men, I have found only unidirectional dictation. And I have yet to find anyone with a proper understanding of the purpose judgment serves.
Part 1: Trust
I’ll start this off with a rather obvious precursory statement: I lie (it’s true). I mean, you can always trust a dishonest man to be dishonest (honestly). I am not here to grandstand truth as Good and lies as Bad. Both truth and lies have their respective places in communication and neither is inherently good or bad. The tandem between the positivity of small-talk and the negativity of gossip is a perfect dichotomy to illustrate this point. I am merely commenting on what I observe to be a gross imbalance in the equilibrium that exists between truth and lies and more importantly on the misuse of them.
Trust is one of the most undervalued assets of our stock of tools. But then again, the truth is a rather ugly thing when you look at it long enough. It’s value isn’t readily apparent from it’s unsightly exterior. It is dull and rough. It doesn’t shine in the light like so many other valued things. It is completely and totally impartial to the desires and dogma of others, applying to each in turn a cold and calculating algorithm designed specifically to annihilate –and of course show to everyone in the process– all imperfections.
So perhaps I can understand why so many try to avoid it. Perhaps I can understand why the equilibrium is so skewed away from it. But that doesn’t make it acceptable. The tools are meant to be used together as a means of improving a situation, not exclusively as a means of dividing or else worsening a situation. But that is what is happening.
Everywhere I look and listen, the truth is deemed unacceptable. It’s just too harsh, or just too problematic, or just too damned ugly. So a lie is instead put in its place. Again, this occurrence by itself isn’t inherently good or bad. Yet it seems that lies are almost always used to supplant the truth, wrecking the equilibrium. It doesn’t really matter what the situation is. If it is at all possible to paint a prettier picture with a lie, it will be done.
That in itself should be a big red flag. It IS misuse. The trust-forming small-talk, wherein all parties are in effect strengthened by camaraderie, has turned into people-ranking on the grape vine, wherein different people are deemed worthy of different levels of “the truth.” The small little lie to one person has grown and amplified to a trust issue with everyone else around. The lie, while prettier, is going to be used in an entire sequence of decisions, poisoning the entire chain of events. In short, while more immediately tolerable, these kinds of lies are obviously going to bring more long-term pain then the truth could ever dish out. Why on earth would anyone chose to bring MORE pain to themselves?
It is this desperate clinging towards instant gratification and quick fixes that I feel has poisoned the relations of so many. The only remedy is to bring the equilibrium back to a natural level, to accept that sometimes the hard thing is in the end the better thing to do. That sometimes, a moment’s humble honesty can take us far further than a lifetime of lies.
The truth may not be shiny, but nothing can shine in the darkness.
[“Part 2 of 3: Experience” and “Part 3 of 3: Judgment” soon to be released]