Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth



In the Reyaverse, there is no such thing as an objective truth that sits outside human experience. I am with the neuroscientists who now believe it is the function of the mind to create a story that "best explains" (their words) what the hell is going on outside the divine homeostasis of the world inside the skin. The mind draws on personal experience and gathered knowledge when creating its story, hence each individual scans the mountains of sensory data incoming through ears, eyes, nose, and skin for what is already familiar. Each of us, me included, creates a story that makes sense to us, even if it doesn't sound right to anyone else. Of course the world does not make sense, not much of it anyway. But we try so hard. We do.

As a life-long contrarian, I adore the experience of realizing I've been telling myself a story that is no longer true. Nothing is more exhilarating, or more humbling, than understanding it's time to change my tune.

Learning that my story of whatever was insufficient or inaccurate opens up everything. Because I revel in the questioning attitude, when I see that one part of my reality doesn't hold up under scrutiny, I become curious about all the other things I believe that, when examined, can't pass muster. I'm not saying it's easy to learn things I didn't already know, but it is very satisfying. It keeps the brain plastic, too, or so they say.

Truth in the Reyaverse is paradoxical, many faceted, and always morphing into a new form. For a long time I chased it around in circles, "it" being THE truth. Of course I never found it, but the pursuit was vivifying. I guess.

In fact I still chase it around, though instead of looking for a cinematic, overarching, universal truth, these days I try to keep my eyes on the prize of my personal truths. I watch this facet or that of my reality flicker, flare up, change shape, color, texture, quality. When one of my beliefs goes up in smoke, it alters the layout of the entire landscape of my truth.

What others believe is up to them. Just figuring out what I believe is full time work, so help me God!

11 comments:

ellen abbott said...

yeah. confusing enough just to figure out what is true for yourself. I think I'm going through a transition, a revision of my personal truth. Or maybe just a realization.

Susan said...

Reya, I have been reading your blog with my RSS feed for a couple of years now. I benefit from it greatly. I wanted to let you know that.

Reya Mellicker said...

Thanks Susan!

Ellen, hell yeah you're going through a transition!

Elizabeth said...

Well done, well said, as ever Miss Reya.
So true that we want to tell stories to explain things....
you are one of the most questing people I know.
Almost a visionary, I think.

As for the pink peony --that, itself, approaches the divine in flower incarnation.


On a much duller , mundane note, I am battling a horribly case of poison ivy....entering week three of torment....

Kerry said...

John and I were just talking about this kind of thing. We were discussing a colleague of his, a person who is always certain of how absolutely right he is. How quickly I tire of people who are that sure of themselves.

Reya Mellicker said...

Oh Elizabeth how awful! Hope you're soon on the mend. Ivy is evil, all of them, even the pretty ones that don't sting.

Almost a visionary? Can't I be a minor visionary? Please?

Kerry I find those people tiring as well. I'll admit I also sometimes envy them. Wouldn't it be great to be so sure?

Steve Reed said...

I think it freaks many people out to think there is no universal truth. That's what draws so many people to religion, to dogma. For me it's all a matter of degrees -- there are larger truths, but we all vary in our perception of the details.

Angela said...

Yes, it`s humbling once you realize there is no universal truth. But also very freeing, I think. Now you KNOW you don`t have to believe "the Truth" that other people sell you. It took me a long time to get over my brainwashing as a child which my father gave me. Good I am over it!

Pauline said...

Exactly! We know this as kids don't we? We get sucked into the "universal truth" theory and then when we get spit out, we're befuddled. The older I get, the more I begin to see my insights as a child were more accurate than what I learned at the hands of some adults as I grew.

steven said...

ain't that the truth . . . or that . . .or that . . . or that!!!!! steven

Reya Mellicker said...

Steve - yes, I agree about levels of truth, and accessibility. There are cultural truths, too. I wrote a little about that today.

Part of sharing our hallucinations is to help smooth the social process. I'll write about it.

Steven? Hell yeah!