6-20-21 Truth


In my addiction, what I believed to be true was, “If only I can manipulate all the conditions in my life and in the lives of others to suit me, then I will be happy.”                        

Truth: Truth with a lower case t and Truth with an upper case T.

Lower case truth is to tell the truth, with compassion or kindness, and recognize the truth from others and when it is not the truth. To see the world as it is, not as you want it to be, and not as others who want to dominate or control you proclaim it to be. Embracing truth frees you from false expectations, fruitless pursuits, disappointment, pointless anger, envy and despair.

Upper case Truth is that life has meaning. Embracing that fact is the most authentic source of happiness because we recognize our potential, and we encourage a humility that brings peace. Most importantly, living in Truth makes it possible for you to love and care for others for just as they are, without being afraid of them or needing to fix them. From such moments come a pure joy that shines so brightly.

There are two motivations for practice: inspiration or desperation. Many of us have known such pain that it has inspired us to search for a different way. It is not cowardice to wish to live with a minimum of suffering. However, to lessen our suffering we cannot try to manipulate and avoid the world and our lives; we need to learn to live without bitterness and fear. To persevere when perseverance seems unlikely to be rewarded, and have the resolve to find the profound meaning in life when things are most difficult. (paraphrased) –Dean Koontz 

It is imperative that we strive to have a realistic view of ourselves, others and the world. If we have a skewed view, we will tell ourselves and others lies when we do not even realize we’re lying. That’s the small l. The big L is when we knowingly Lie in order to manipulate others or ourselves for our own selfish purposes. 

Buddhism recognizes two kinds of Truth. The apparent conventional truth and the real or ultimate Truth. The ultimate Truth can be realized only through meditation, and living the truth, not theorizing or speculating.

The Four Noble Truths: 2500 years ago, The Buddha declared, “I teach suffering, its origin, cessation and path. That’s all I teach.” 

The Buddha is often compared to a physician. In the first two Noble Truths, he diagnosed the problem (suffering) and identified its cause. The third Noble Truth is the realization that there is a cure. The fourth Noble Truth, in which the Buddha set out the Eightfold Path, is the prescription: the way to achieve a release from suffering.

In my addiction I deceived myself greatly, and lied to and deceived others when I needed to. Through my deception came a loathing of myself and a fear of others.

I am learning how to be more honest, always with kindness, to myself and others. In this way I begin to trust myself, to touch into my spiritual center for insights and guidance in life. As I practice this behavior, I find others begin to believe in and trust me also. That is what a good life is about.

In the 12 step program, honesty is one of the cornerstones. We MUST have willingness, honesty, and open-mindedness in order to overcome our addiction. It takes an effort, every day—especially at first—and we never do it perfectly. But we can gain the strength to deal with reality, what some call ‘living life on life’s terms,’ that will continue to grow and enrich our lives and the lives of others.

There are three aspects to consider when telling the truth. (1) Is it true? If not, then it is lying.  (2) Is it necessary? Will someone be helped by it? Is it better to keep my mouth closed?  (3) Is it kind? It may be true, but what are my motives for saying it?

 “Truth without compassion is cruelty.” –Antero Alli

“A problem arises only when you try to manipulate a situation to your advantage or ignore it.”
–Chogyam Trungpa 

Why do I lie, or “shade” the truth? Is it to maintain a false sense of self? Am I protecting and projecting an image that I have of myself? If I can get what I want, then I will be happy. Except I always need more, a never ending circle of frustration.

How do I work on being more honest?Awareness is first and essential, and stems from practicing mindfulness (on and off the cushion). Start small; don’t exaggerate even a little bit to make something sound “better.” Then comes the willingness to act, which can bring us to a place of groundlessness, or the place where there is no attachment to falseness, no deceit—just what is real. We are so used to hanging onto our view of things; to let go of it can be scary. It leaves us with nothing to grasp onto except the real truth. This is the place we need to be.

Our heart and mind can be like a calm pond. Any grasping at falseness whips up the wind and muddies our clarity.

Even as the world changes every day, we must practice every day to maintain our clarity. Otherwise, our vision becomes steadily cloudier, and we may begin to think our blurred vision is True.
                                       How do you fill your bucket? One drop at a time
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step
The great arises out of small things that are honored and cared for

May you be truthful. May you be happy. May you find peace.

Heart Of Recovery web site  — fcheartofrecovery.com