Tuesday, October 2, 2012

[The #30WriteNow October Writing Challenge] Truth is...

Today's prompt, if we choose to use it, is Truth. I didn't have a very "out of the ordinary" idea or day to inspire "out of the ordinary" thinking, so I'm going to just write on and see where this takes me... Feel free to abort if you get bored ;)

Truth is...so easy, but yet so difficult. It's so black & white, yet so gray. Truth is solid as a rock, steadfast, but yet it keeps moving. Funny how a little five-letter word can be so hard to describe.

We were asked to memorize the Declaration of Independence, and this line always stuck out to me
"we hold these truths to be self-eivdent"
I had no idea what it really meant. Or how about the Truth campaign for anti-smoking? Remember those? Truth, Truth every where...

But let's just step back a bit. Truth is a concept we are taught at a very young age. If mum asked "Did you eat that cookie," I know she wanted me to spit out the truth. Never mind the fact that I had a half-guilty look, smeared chocolate across the mouth, sticky fingers and crumbs all over my wee t-shirt to proof the crime. Evidence? What's that? We were too young to piece it together. So when mum keeps asking the same question until I cave and finally nod, it reinforces that our parents must be super smart and all-knowing. Never ever lie to parents - another "truth" I was taught in household. It's disrespectful, shameful, dishonest, disgraceful and just plain bad. And when you're a child that wants to please her parents (still do to some extent!) then it's unacceptable to lie to them. We equate truth to factual events that happen and we equate truth telling to pleasing our parents, as well as learning "it's a good thing."

Six or so years later, I had a sibling! This is where truth gets fuzzier. Of course I had to learn that I couldn't quite hoodwink my way through everything too early on. After all, my brother had to be old enough to eat a cookie or have hte legs to walk him to the crime scene. So if mum asked if I ate a cookie, I would sheepishly deflect and answer "Ren-An ate a cookie." After all, looking at the facts, that is what happen. And by this time I had the know-how to wipe off the crumbs (here you go, little bro) and wipe off my fingers (Here hold this paper towel, lil bro) So what if I did eat one or two myself while persuading my little, innocent brother to join me in my act of crime? Deflecting and telling one half of the truth will get me off the hook, right? Deflect, deflect, deflect ... i'm still telling factual events here. So while my mum is reprimanding my brother and me, but more so my brother... cogs start turning. A kid learns new powers -- the power to bend things. And a new type of truth is born: white lies are kinda almost truths. And the grey begins...We manage to convince ourselves that we still told the truth, even if it means omitting a few crucial facts. 

Ok, let's fast forward to those more fuzzy logic...

The worst parts are when people start caring about your opinion but ask this of you: "Tell me the truth, do you like this dress on me?" When you know your best friend saved hard to get this dress by working after school and she's been swooning months over it, then comes out strutting her stuff in this dress that just makes her look like a glittery christmas ornament. What if her eyes are all lit up with pride & "I told you I can do this" look...I am not heartless. So can I just bend the truth or just bite down on my tongue? If she was my bestest friend I would try to muster up all the courage inside of me and let her down easy. After all, I rather her look stunning then make a fool out of herself on her date. But what if it's a person in passing and you could make their day by just nodding and smiling? Does everything have to be so blatant truth if it's hurtful?

So that's a lot of chewing and mulling of us to do ... Where do you stand on the whole truth thing? Never told a lie? Told a few white lies? Or told a horrible lie that will get you fired or disowned from your family? No details about the lie (this is not a confessional), we're just here to discuss thoughts on truth and if it's black & white for you or gray...

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails