The truth is like success and happiness. we say we want it. we say we need it. we say we’ll accept nothing less than it.
but is that even true? isn’t such a position more hopeful, more idyllic, than realistic?
every day we see information, and we process it. and then we decide what to do with it. right? don’t you choose what to tell? how much to tell? and who to tell? i mean, does everyone deserve to know everything? does anyone? to know everything? aren’t all rights reserved to you with what you know? and what you share? and aren’t you entitled to determine how what you hold enters common space?
we claim we live in truth, that we must live in truth. but do we ever define truth? better yet, how do we define truth? isn’t it more relative than absolute? isn’t yours different from mine? and if yours is different from mine, then i’m counting on you to accept mine, aren’t i? i’m counting on you. to be open. to be receptive. to be unafraid. to be reasonable. to abandon your natural inclination to write-off the unknown and the unfamiliar. it’s a hell of a risk. and the truth is, many of us aren’t evolved enough yet to evaluate our role in the telling of a lie. of course you, yourself, might notta told it, but the way you typically handle difficulty coulda made a managed truth the best — nay, the only logical option.
i’m convinced that “truth” is rational choice theory* in action, in real time.
as the teller, i must weigh the cost(s) of what i gotta say? i gotta consider what the benefit is to you? or to me? thus, knowing the answer to these questions gives me the right to withhold, if necessary, where necessary. I don’t mean lie — or maybe I do. Because folks want truth but know full well they don’t handle honesty well.
and in that case, why put myself through the torture? because it’ll set me free, you might pollyannaishly intone. and you might be right. but you could be wrong. The question then becomes: how much do i gain if you’re right? but how much might i lose if you’re wrong?
Either way, at least i got my health, right? …since we tossin around feel-good idioms and shit.
No. not right.
perhaps the well-placed, well-intentioned lie is more valuable than the oft-touted and seldom seen “living in truth.” Shit’s real out here. and cats mean to practice self-preservation at all costs. that’s the truth. the ultimate “truth.”
*Yes, Rational Choice Theory (RCT). I’m a scholar out this bitch. Deal with it.