Truth undefined

Does the title I’ve chosen seem an unlikely one?

I would posit that, after much searching,

the hard rock of truth is more the fleeting glimpse of shadow,

than stone edifice.

That the archetype Truth is a myth without independent existence,

beholden to specific conditions, which are, themselves impermanent.

Truth is fluid, changeable. Any given definition

reflects the truth of a moment only, gone before it is even fully realized.

Truth indeed is not discovered by firm grasp, instead it reveals itself in letting go.

 

 

 

 

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My Simple Life 6

In this post I want to explore deeper into the misconception introduced last month regarding possessions. The current narrative that the more we have the better our life will be is pathologically wrong. It also happens to be the root cause of a great deal of suffering when foolishly used as a measure of personal value. It’s an idea worth letting go of.

The why of it is very simple. Your possessions are not you. This ancient precept can be found everywhere from 3rd century B.C. Stoic philosophy to Buddhist non-attachment.

One useful and necessary step toward a simple life is developing a clear understanding of who you are. Minimalism helped me in a general way by cleaning out the clutter, after that I had to turn off the T.V. and give a hard look at the correlation between myself and the things I had. I couldn’t find a single one that was intrinsic to who I was. There were tools for chores, items related to hobbies I enjoyed, things with sentimental value, but not one thing that would render me incomplete if it were lost.

I don’t mean to imply that possessions are bad in and of themselves. They aren’t, and the ones that serve us should be meticulously maintained, what they shouldn’t be is loved. Liked, yes. Appreciated, certainly. Not loved. They are things, their only value is in what we can accomplish with them.

Now that we’ve employed minimalism to remove the junk and begun separating our belongings from our identity we’ve initiated the process of coming to know who we are through reverse engineering. In other words, we’re discovering who we are by learning who we’re not.

My Simple Life (prequel)

The clock of industrial society is winding haltingly down to midnight. The truth of that statement isn’t difficult to see once you allow yourself to look beyond the heavily powdered and rouged façade of  “want to be” and into the unadorned countenance of “what is”.

There are a plethora of Doomsayers of every stripe imploring us to see that unlovely face as the Armageddon and prepare for the penultimate moment. Across the figurative way are the Soothsayers, insisting that everything is fine while they haul buckets of rouge.

Both groups can be unbelievably entertaining to watch, being equally clueless. They resemble nothing so much as travelling snake-oil salesmen, hawking the virtues of one useless paradigm or another.

If you’ll kindly pause breathlessly while I climb up on my soapbox I’ll offer an, err…… anti-climax. Friends and neighbors across the world, there is no need to panic. Nothing, not one thing, unprecedented is happening. We are simply hitting a few pot-holes on the descending side of societal arc. Every previous society has experienced it, as will every one that comes after. It is part of the natural order of our Cosmos.

Latecomers to the show, noticing that the doomsday clock stands at two minutes to midnight, have assumed imminent annihilation is upon us and reacted either with panic or utter denial. What they missed is the context in which that clock operates. It doesn’t tick off minutes and hours, but rather decades and centuries.

As I type this, mainstream media is busily expounding the “horrors” of the federal government shut down this morning. The vast majority of us dealt with this emergency by going about our day normally, which is the correct response. We’ll do the same thing tomorrow, and the day after that. This shutdown is one of those pot-holes I mentioned. Further along on our descent they’ll increase in size and number while the effort needed to cope with them gradually increases.

We may well be far enough along to hit some frighteningly large ones in the short term. They will no doubt be upsetting, none however, will be apocalyptic.

It’s time, passed time in fact, to prepare ourselves and our children to function within a society in decline.

Tell Me, Knight

A serpent’s hiss from an oozing pestilent mouth,

” What weapon will you choose, when you come to challenge me in the dark?”.

“What armor will guard your soft organs from my jagged claws, my ripping fangs?”.

“Will the heft of the axe comfort your approach?”.

“Perhaps the keen bright edge of a well honed blade?”.

“Will you come with the stride of a gun’s weight on your waist?”.

“Tell me, Knight!”, the Thing gleefully, horridly cackled, certain of It’s victory.

The Warrior stepped from shadow with barefoot, silent tread.

No armor betrayed his approach.

No axe or long knife encumbered his hand to ring off the stone walls.

No gun unbalanced his gait on the rough ground.

Striking the small light he held in his left hand, he stood before the Thing.

“What madness is this? The thing spat, coiling in surprise.

Calmly, without anger the Warrior spoke.

“No madness, I’ve carried with me all I need.”,

“A heart without fear.”,

“A light to find the path.”,

“A glass to reflect the truth.”.

The polished glass in his right hand, raised aloft,

caught the Thing’s eye for but a heartbeat,

it was enough.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congratulations! (a diatribe)

I’d like to take a moment

and acknowledge the enormous success

achieved by those magnates of

modern industrial society.

 

The battle was by no means an easy one

opposed by truth at every turn

motivated by nothing more

than the desire for financial gain

 

What stunningly ingenious fabrications

cut from whole cloth

how reasonable their presentation

made them appear

 

Integrity, morality, ethics

unhesitatingly sacrificed

on a golden altar

in the name of wealth

 

What glittering wonders

of technology

sold at exorbitant prices

you can afford to buy!

 

Still, with overflowing billfold

what coinage is required

for the washing away of stain

from a corrupt heart?

 

 

 

 

 

A Lesson on Truth

Pray find here a lesson

that all men should know,

A lie rumbles like thunder

truth falls as the snow,

falsehoods must be bellowed loudly

to be heard

truth needs little more

than a whisper of words,

Deceit hides itself buried

‘neath piles of verse

truth comes to us bare

to be blessed or be cursed.