Truth? You have to work at it.

city museum 2006085Lies, lies, there are so many lies.  As a society, we’ve become very good at spinning tales which are presented as the truth.  And the biggest lies of all are broadcast over the airwaves; nonstop, twenty-four hours a day.  It’s so bad that each political slant has it’s own network hell-bent on promoting their own political agenda by, you guessed it, lies.  At first, it was more subtle; photoshop, cut and paste, and the distorted truth became a lie.  Now, the truth is as difficult to find as fireflies on a sunny day.

I’m reminded of the 1881 fairy tale about Pinocchio, the wooden marionette carved by Geppetto, a bachelor who yearned for a real boy of his own.   Eventually, through a lot of hoping, praying, and imagination, the good fairy changed Pinocchio into a real boy.  But wait, the good fairy would not tolerant lies.  She told Pinocchio that if he told a lie his nose would grow.  Well, you guessed it, Pinocchio told a string of lies and surprise — Pinocchio’s nose grew so long that he couldn’t get out of his house.  (Imagine our House of Representatives with noses so long that they would fill the chamber.  And those nose hairs.  Yuck.)  To save Pinocchio, woodpeckers flew into the house and pecked at his nose until it became the normal size.  Moral of the story — don’t lie or your nose will grow.

In the days when I was a boy, parents handed out advice that was designed to keep you from lying or doing “bad” things.  If you make a bad face your face will freeze in that position for the rest of your life.  Make your eyes go cross and they will remain cross.    I heard this one at the church  — If you masturbate  you will go blind.  That one scared the hell out of me.  Well, I didn’t go blind but I am a bit near-sighted and have worn glasses since I was five years old.  Go figure.  My mother’s favorite — Rich people aren’t happy.  You’re lucky that we’re poor.  Another of her favorites — If you stay out past midnight, you can’t be doing anything good.  Well, I’ll have to give her that one.  About telling the truth:  if you don’t tell the truth something bad will happen to you, and yes, you will go to hell.

Our reality, the truth as we see it, is based on a combination of our genetic makeup and our life experiences; nuture and nature, that’s what they call it.  If we follow this line of thought, each person will have a unique opinion of the truth.  Some people might say that the Bible holds the truth.  Well, that might be true, but as soon as you read it the words become mixed with your concept of reality.  The truth becomes less clear.

I’m reminded of something that a buddhist monk once said, When you think that you have all of the answers, you’ve lost your way.  Now we don’t have a treasury map for finding the truth.  We do what we have to do — read, listen, think, look within.  Truth brings peace.

Published by llfranklin12

Larry L Franklin holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music from the University of Illinois and Southern Illinois University. He performed in the U.S. Navy Band located in Washington, D.C. from 1967 to 1971. From 1972 to 1975, he taught music at Southern Illinois University. In 1976, he completed requirements for a certified financial planner designation and maintained a successful investment business until 2007 when he retired to devote his energies to writing. In 2003, he received an MFA in Creative Non-Fiction from Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland. Franklin is the author of “Mnemosyne: A Love Affair with Memory,” published by Xlibris; “The Rita Nitz Story: A Life without Parole,” published by Southern Illinois University Press; “Cherry Blossoms & Barron Plains: A woman’s journey from mental illness to a prison cell,” published by Chipmunka Publishing Company; and “Supermax Prison: Controlling the most dangerous criminals,” published by History Publishing Company. He currently resides in southern Illinois with his wife, Paula.

5 thoughts on “Truth? You have to work at it.

    1. It’s interesting that you ask what prompted me to write this particular blog. Yes, I was moved to write this piece. I’ve thought about how allusive truth can be, but a childhood friend provided the motivation to put my feelings into words. I recently hooked up with a childhood friend from decades ago, I’m 71. He began sending me loads of political information which was contrary to my beliefs. I lean to the left on most issues, my friend is far, far, far right. Hence, there was a bit of friction. I posted “What’s all of this political crap?” Well, I apologized for my statement and we agreed to disagree. The more I thought about it, the more I realized just how difficult it is to find the “truth.” That’s why I wrote the blog. I tried to keep my political beliefs out of the blog. Did I succeed, or was it obvious?

      1. Thanks for the reply, interesting. I didn’t pick up on the left vs right. I wondered if it may have been promoted by snowden or conspiracy theories around the Malaysian airline flight for example.

  1. I visited your blogs. Interesting and well written. I assume that you are a woman — the dress gave you away — and that you are decades younger than me. Well, that’s no surprise. Everyone’s younger than me. But I am a young spirit. I live in Illinois — the middle of the USA — in a university community. I hang out at the coffee shops. The students keep me young, and add a fire to my writing. I wish you the very best, and ask that the wind is always at your back.

    1. Thank you! Yes, I am a woman. If everyone is younger, that makes you wisest though, right? Thanks for the lovely feedback on my blog. Im just getting started and so every comment means so much. Im a bit annoyed as it looks like I may have been missing comments labeled as spam though – grrr. would love to hear more on your left wing tendencies, particularly how people felt about that in days gone by USA. Happy St Patricks Day!

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