“The truth is rarely pure and never simple.” I can’t remember who said that but I read it once in a book of quotes and it has stuck with me ever since.
What does truth mean to us today and how much value do we place on it? Do we value it enough to want it in its pure form even when it isn’t simple, or do we seek a truth that matches our own reasoning for what we hope is true? Does the concept of one absolute truth even exist in our culture or have we accepted the idea that we can each have our personal version of truth, tailored to fit our personality and needs?
What if truth takes seeking to find? What if it comes at a price? What if finding the truth would change everything you thought you knew, turning your world upside down – would it be worth it?
I finally got round to watching the Matrix a while ago and was fascinated by the scene of Neo being presented with the two different pills. He was faced with the choice of having reality revealed to him which would shatter illusion of life as he knew it or forgetting it all and going back to living in the comfortable lie. He chose to know the truth but it came at a high cost.
What if the illusion of life is far more attractive than the reality, seeming easier, simpler and more comfortable? How many of us would choose to ignore truth and remain in ignorance for as long as we can?
It seems we live in a culture that values other things above truth. Happiness, comfort and tolerance are more important to us. We would rather all get along than struggle through the hard questions until we find an answer.
And yet, what is anything worth if it is not true?
An apple can look delicious, but is inedible if it is made of plastic. A roof can seem strong and waterproof but will not keep out the rain if it is made of cardboard. A promise can bring great hope but is of no worth unless it is kept.
What when one final answer is demanded and all we’ve done is agree to get along and avoid the question?