The truth is a well sought after commodity in todays society. Every person you come across swears that they are the one telling the truth and that anyone who says anything to contradict their version of events is telling lies.
Naturally, every side of each argument will tell you this – and here’s the bit we always forget in the midst of debate – both sides believe they are in the right. Both sides also believe the people on the other side of the argument are either lying through their teeth or deluding themselves. The “other side” are huddled together plotting about what stories they can make up next…something that “my side” don’t need to do, because we’ve got the truth on our side.
Of course, sometimes, some people are lying to your face, but for the most part this is not all that common.
You can see how animosity can build in relationships, families, work places or even across the country when both sides think they are right and that the other side are either stupid or evil.
So is there a way of getting to the bottom of things and finding out who IS telling the truth? Well, you could go on morning TV and have a self-important presenter do a unreliable test in front of the nation and then continue the argument.
Or you could look at things a little bit differently. I’d like you to consider that everything that you see, hear and experience is filtered through your senses and then through the “what does that mean” section of your brain. Your brain then searches through all of its databases for similar experiences and assigns a meaning to what is in front of you – this is what you are seeing as the “truth”. (I don’t think I really need to tell you at this point that I am not a neuroscientist.) The exact same thing is happening on the other side of the table, but through a whole individual set of filters and a different experience database. No wonder you’ve both got a different take on things.
There is another complication that exacerbates the misunderstanding – you know what you meant by what you said. You also know that your intentions were good, because of this we tend to give ourselves the benefit of the doubt when it comes to how our communication is being received.
If you can remember this and approach each disagreement with this understanding you may just find that life becomes more peaceful.
It turns out that the TRUTH IS OUT THERE, we’ll just never really know what it is.
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