Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Art by me, available at SazeracStars

What does it mean to tell the truth?

I have recently found out that another detail about my family history was in fact....a lie.
It was actually a series of complicated cover ups.
I still don't think I know what actually happened.
I doubt I ever will.
So many decisions and relationships were predicated 
on the lie that began it all as if it were truth 
that it is impossible to extricate 
fact from fiction.

The fiction has become the fact.

I should not actually be surprised about this.
It has happened many times before.
It will most likely happen again.

Humans are liars.
Not just my family.
Not just me.
All of us.
It's part of our nature.

We lie so much we create nicknames and value gradations for lies.

White lies.
A whopper.
We skirt the truth
or we stretch it
or misdirect it.

We fabricate.
We cover up.
It's not a lie, it's a tall tale.
A fairy tale.
a story.

It doesn't take much for us to justify why we MUST keep telling ourselves and others things that just aren't quite true.

We don't want to hurt anyone's feelings.
Or shatter their world view.
or feel exposed or vulnerable.

It's not anyone else's business.
It's our precious, private bit of knowledge or shame.

Except nothing really belongs to just one of us.
We are all connected.
What we do, our actions and our in-actions-
all have a ripple effect.
When we lie
about anything
we create something else.
We are makers
and lying is creating something.

It's like creating a shadow where only light should be.
You can spend a long time chasing shadows.
An even longer time undoing all the decisions and what-ifs that were based on your understanding of the shadows.
It can be so hard to just find the truth...much less try to speak it.

The best of us are so good at it that we can lie to ourselves.
We can believe what we have fabricated as though it is truth.
When it is definitely not truth.
Just a 'better' version of what we wished could have happened.
Instead of what actually happened.
Which may have been awful
or may have just been boring.
At any rate...someone decides that they need to 'fix it'
or change the truth
so out comes a lie.
Or usually more than one lie.

Part of the work is to both seek the truth 
and realize that it doesn't really exist in most moments.
Or that's what I tell myself.

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