“The Truth Is That Which Cannot Be Denied… Everything Can Be Denied… = There Is No Truth…”
The above classical logic equation explains our modern-day conundrum and is a strong indicator, and probably symptomatic, of the times we are living in.
It is almost impossible to ascertain what the “Truth” is in any sphere of our lives. Religions, Political Parties, News agencies, Governments and even Scientists, all espouse their version of the truth to support their POV with their “narrative”. Because EVERYTHING can be denied (a La Trumpism) – it is! Depending on the situation or position one seeks to proffer, there will always be opposition and therefore conflict – and this self-propagating cycle of assertion and denial keeps us in a constant state of uncertainty, anxiety, fear, and suspicion.
Ironically, our entire life is a conjuration of myths that we as a species believe in (and they become our reality purely because of our systemic belief in them). Most of these myths have been propagated by our predecessors, but still we unquestioningly adopt them as our own. Yuval Noah Harari’s book Sapiens is a wonderful eye-opener on “How”, we as a species have come to dominate the world we live in and “How” we are bound and codified according to our myths which include religion, money, nations, corporations etc.
The more people that believe in a myth, the more real and powerful it becomes – so the game of truth – can simply become (and probably already is) a game of numbers!
So I ask this – “If there is no truth, what do we have”? In what can we seek refuge? On what can we hang our hat (and our souls) on?
I have found that when we logically dissect any “Consequential Questions” on life, we eventually end up with the two most fundamental questions:
1) Who am I? (How did I come to exist)?
2) Why do I exist? (What is my purpose)?
1. Who am I? How did I come to exist?
The answer to this question has over the last millennia, been debated by theologists, philosophers, historians and more recently our most celebrated scientists.
The answer, in its most simplified version, presents 2 sides.
a) Those that believe that we have evolved by “Natural Selection” – Darwinists / Naturalists
b) Those that believe that we have evolved by “Intelligent Design” – Creationists / Causists
The former believe that matter, and then life was formed by the chance intermingling of particles from the quantum vacuum / primordial soup post the Big Bang (there is no position on how the Big Bang occurred).
The latter believe that there is Intelligent Design built into our system (like our DNA) and that it can be traced from present to past like a strand of knowledge. Their proponents also argue that if there was an “event” aka the Big Bang (which ALL scientists agree to) that “caused” our universe into existence - there has to be a “causer”.
Whilst the best minds debate and posture on this question, there is one other obvious related question that needs to be asked - and was posed by the 17th Century German mathematician, scientist and philosopher, G.W. Leibniz - “Why is there something, rather than nothing at all?” This question also still encourages many enlightening and entertaining arguments from our top scientists and philosophers even now.
Why am I talking about all this? How is this relevant?
Because I believe that the second fundamental question brings context to the first!
2. What is My Purpose? (If there is no “Truth”)
Purpose is definable. It is controllable. Not by the unknown – but by US (even if we are not sure about what we are)! I believe that “purpose” is not universal – it is unique. We can decide “our purpose”! We could further expand our ‘purpose’ into Biological purpose, Spiritual Purpose, Psychological purpose etc. but that would not alter the fundamental “reason” of the question – which exposes to us our greatest attribute – that of “Choice”!
And, in order to choose wisely, we need to have “Awareness”- and our Awareness is also unique to us! Therefore we are in control of our purpose, our awareness and our lives – even if we are not in control of “how” we came to be!!
I use the above bantering to urge us all to concentrate on our purpose in this life – over and above the various definitions we use to pigeon-hole who we are. Who we are should not determine what we do – we cannot let the universal determine our individual – our individual must define our universal. We must move from “self” to “self-less” (having no self) – this is the path to evolve. We cannot move in the opposite direction – it is not possible or desirable.
In my work and life, I hold onto a few simple mantra’s:
There is no Secret Sauce!
Hard Work is Easy!
When you are right – you hold strong
When you are wrong – you learn from your error, you accept responsibility, you apologize and move on…
I also am not naive enough to think that I won’t make mistakes – it is the very process of learning. However, I try and bring awareness into all my choices and try and evaluate the
effect of those choices on my desired result. From all that I have read, experienced and learnt, I try and stay aware of my feelings, my surroundings, my actions, my reactions, my breadth, my body, my language, my being… because everything I do, say or think creates vibrations and therefore has consequences.
Whatever our origins and beliefs, there is much to do in our lives and whilst we try and find answers to the fundamental questions and bring relevance in our daily interactions, we must also let our lives serve our purpose!