Telling The Truth

by Evan on 2016/09/13

I got this question in the box in the right hand margin of this page (if you have any question at all about living an authentic life please feel free to post it, and I’ll give my best answer), here’s my response.

You ask what we feel prevents us from living authentically? Telling people what I really think does that for me. I do realize that truthfully that is not possible but oh that I wonder what it would be like?!

 

For me it is a lightness and feeling of fullness. There is an elation to it and an ease.

Is this not possible? Sometimes it may not be. Other times it is possible for most of us, I think.

  • There are situations where power is exercised in such a way that truth is not welcome. “Politics is the management of perceptions” is an example.
  • There are places where it is dangerous to tell the truth. Some people will regard it as provocation to violence and act violently.

 

Sometimes it is a need for skill – ‘having the right words’. The cliché example being the spouse asking, “Do you like my new clothes?” when you don’t like them much at all.

  • One possibility is to ignore the question and respond to what you guess is the underlying need, “I think you’re a delightful person to be with, a gifted [whatever], who I am each day thankful to be with.”
  • Another possibility is to give a detailed response: I think the cut suits you [here] but not so much [here], the colour goes with your eyes, it is/not your usual style.

We can build our vocabulary and repertoire of responses by watching others (perhaps even from movies and novels).

 

I think for most of us most of the time it is possible for us to expand the amount of time and places where we can speak truly.

  • It can help to start with strangers where any consequences will be minimal or non-existent. Respond genuinely to enquiries about your health or wishes for having a good day. It only takes a moment to pause and respond genuinely.
  • From here it may be possible to move on to more times and places. (Take time to get used to it with strangers first. There’s no need to rush. Feel comfortable that you can do it in one place before moving on.)

To live more authentically it does matter that we speak the truth. And for most of us most of the time I think it is possible for us to speak the truth more.

I realise this is a big topic.  And now I can think of different ways of responding to the original comment.  All comments very welcome in the comments box below.

{ 0 comments }

Update and Coming Up

September 8, 2016

What have I been up to lately? Two things mostly. Our nephew is living with us (my wife and I) for a while. This has been mostly gone great. 2. I’ve been learning about philosophy – mostly via podcasts and some reading – and discussing it – mostly on some Facebook pages dedicated to it. […]

Read the full article →

The Communal Body of the Divine Spirit #6 Weakness

July 7, 2016

This post is part of a series about living well in groups.  They are a series of meditations inspired by a chapter in the New Testament. It is Pauls first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12.  Verse 22-23, in the New International Version of the Bible says,  . . . those parts of the body […]

Read the full article →

The Communal Body of the Divine Spirit #5 Vulnerability

July 4, 2016

This post is part of a series about living well in groups.  They are a series of meditations inspired by a chapter in the New Testament. It is Pauls first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12.  Verse 21, in the New International Version of the Bible says, The eye cannot say to the hand, “I […]

Read the full article →

The Communal Body of the Divine Spirit #4 Interdependence

July 1, 2016

This post is part of a series about living well in groups.  They are a series of meditations inspired by a chapter in the New Testament. It is Pauls first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12.  Verse 21, in the New International Version of the Bible says, The eye cannot say to the hand, “I […]

Read the full article →

The Communal Body of the Divine Spirit #3 Vocation

June 28, 2016

This post is part of a series about living well in groups.  They are a series of meditations inspired by a chapter in the New Testament. It is Pauls first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12.  Verse 7, in the New International Version of the Bible says, “Now to each one the manifestation of the […]

Read the full article →

The Communal Body of the Divine Spirit #2 Intimacy

June 25, 2016

This post is part of a series about living well in groups.  They are a series of meditations inspired by a chapter in the New Testament. It is Pauls first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12.  Verse 7, in the New International Version of the Bible says, “Now to each one the manifestation of the […]

Read the full article →

The Communal Body of the Divine Spirit #1 Hospitality

June 22, 2016

The next few posts are about living well in groups.  They are a series of meditations inspired by a chapter in the New Testament. It is Pauls first letter to the Corinthians chapter 12.  I begin with verse 7, which in the New International Version of the Bible says, “Now to each one the manifestation […]

Read the full article →

More Life Less Lifestyle

June 2, 2016

  It isn’t exactly news that life isn’t all about money. Except to politicians and economists. The rest of us know that life is about getting on with other people and doing worthwhile things. The importance of money is to meet basic needs. This is increasingly a concern for people even in the wealthy nations […]

Read the full article →

Don’t Panic It’s An Emergency

May 13, 2016

Usually, in an emergency, people behave well. They co-operate, focusing on what needs to be done. And, contrary to views about inherent selfishness of people, they often behave altruistically – children are cared for, the sick are tended to and so on.   An Imagined Emergency Which means that picturing ourselves in an emergency can […]

Read the full article →

The Importance of Small Things

May 3, 2016

The importance of the small things is that they make up most of our lives. Big things often consist in lots of small things. A book is written one phrase at a time, eating healthy is done in lots of meals and episodes of exercise. Overnight successes have usually put in lots of time before […]

Read the full article →