This I Believe

James - San Antonio, Texas
Entered on February 16, 2007
Age Group: 50 - 65

February 16, 2007

The Myth of Being Right

I am troubled that mankind is so polarized. I wonder at why, and wonder if it might be prevented.

We like being right. There are two steps to achieving this. One step assures us we are correct, the other step assures us that the other guy is wrong. These two steps mean that we’re right.

Life is not that easy.

I believe there is, indeed, a Universal Truth. There are ‘other’ truths, but any and all truths are congruent with, tied to, and even part of Universal Truth. Universal Truth is true everywhere, every time, and for all time. It is eternal. It just is.

Universal truth is not God, but exists within God, and only God. In fact only God is capable of containing Universal Truth.

When we look to Universal Truth we see it covers math, science, art, politics, hearts, souls, religion, history, and all that exists. We use Universal Truth to identify how we feel and think – usually in a way that will find the shiny gold color of this Truth reflecting on us, indicating we are ‘right.’

Sensing the golden glow tends to make us think that we now possess Universal Truth. Because we seemingly possess it, those with alternate views, can not possibly possess it. We get so comfortable with our grasp on Universal Truth that we become sure that if someone differs from us, they cannot possess Truth. We are right. They are wrong.

People presume that a grasp on Truth means possession. Thinking this, we place our selves equivalent to God. Only God may entirely possess Truth.

I have learned that Truth is way bigger than I can possibly contain. In fact I can be full to bursting of Truth and that will only represent a drop in the bucket of Universal Truth, so there is plenty left over for someone that disagrees with me. The golden glow I sometimes sense is probably Truth reflecting off both of us – and it is probably reflecting in spite of us rather than because of us. There is much Truth to go around and more than I can ever possess, even on my best day.

There is a trap regarding Truth. That is, even when we are right, the ability to contain right is limited. We would like to think that we can contain an infinite amount of right, but we are, in fact, finite. Being finite, our ability to contain Truth has limits. It is true that finite can only contain finite.

At times this has bothered me, mostly because it did not fit into the popular philosophy or theology of Right and Wrong. I don’t want a model where Right and Wrong don’t matter, they absolutely do. But, I want a model of Truth that works, and also allows for both Right and Wrong. But, I need a model with room for other things I believe.

I believe that no human, can contain Truth. Truth is too big. But people can contain subTruth. Now, subTruth is all true, it is not less true. It is just a portion of Universal Truth in a package a human can handle. Also, subTruth contains absolutely no wrong or non-truth. It is 100% true, but not 100% of all Truth. There are infinite portions of subTruth.

I believe that if we are having a real conversation about something worth talking about, we are probably having a conversation that includes your subTruth and my subTruth. And, if I would like you to respect my subTruth, I must first respect your subTruth.

I believe, every human is flawed and all humans will always represent a flawed container for subTruth. The subTruth is not flawed, the container is. I am fine when two of God’s creation look at their subTruth and draw different conclusions. I never assume that one side is more flawed than the other. I always assume that I am just as flawed as the next person. God is not flawed.

I believe that it is a myth that we can define people up as absolutely right or wrong. Even partially right and wrong alignment may be destructive if it assumes someone possesses Truth. But you and I by respecting, honoring, and joining our subTruth may strengthen each other and both become better.