Roots: Strings

A philosophical exploration of Truth and the truths that obscure it.

Truth is like strings.

Knit it together with the fabric of your experience and you can make a fine coat to wrap yourself and your grotesque imaginings in.

Tear it away, you’ll reveal a naked and mad animal lost in a void beneath.

We live in an absurd universe that our limited senses and all of the tools we have created are incapable of truly perceiving.

Our lives are so small and short and painful in their own ways. Death is always on the horizon.

We are only capable of falsehood as we are ultimately incapable of knowing any objective truths. Deep down, we all wonder if we were to just— let go of all the lies we tell to cover up the truth, that the Truth would then actually be revealed and the fabric of reality would completely unravel itself.

So, we keep hold on our strings, and make certain we stay grounded, scooping up bits of fabric from reality and knitting lovely coats we tell ourselves are real. We move through reality saying things like, “This is who I really am,” believing whatever it is we might believe about the experience. We are all wrong.

The only “Truth” I’ve been able to infer is that there is none, there are only subjective experiences that vary from being to being, who may or may not exist.

I have no way to even know I even exist apart from the experiences I have affirming themselves. But it’s impossible to draw any real truth from that other than what’s subjectively garnered through my limited senses and tools. We can claim little pieces of fabric of reality we pick up and tell fabulous lies about them, but no matter how much we bury ourselves in falsehoods, we’re completely incapable of knowing anything for certain.

Overwhelming, isn’t it? I’ve been using “we” a lot just to try to be inclusive of you on this journey with me, but the truth is that these are all just things that run through my mind constantly. I’m always denying these wild ideas I think are true and making a A LOT of assumptions to move through this experience, acting as if I’m entirely wrong about everything I believe deep down in the void.

I’ve got a lovely, but torn coat made from my experiences. A long time ago, I went through hell and my coat was torn off, I saw the void on the other side then. I know I’m not the only one who’s been there. A man there offered me his coat, and I wore it for too long. It took a long time to shed his and get mine back. His wasn’t the first I’d worn either.

We’re constantly trading around coats like this, changing always, becoming different and different and different. Often, our coats aren’t just made of one material, but are an amalgamation of different materials hastily stitched together by our truths.

Even if we have perfectly functioning bodies and minds, the flaws we cover with our coats are ever-present even in the best of us. Layer your physical and emotional flaws on top of these, along with trauma, the weight of the burdens you carry, etc. and this existence can quickly become quite unbearable.

We are constantly seeking out ways to cope with our flaws, especially the ones preventing our understanding of our own ineffable nature and the nature of reality. We’ll buy into anything sold to us. Anything that we can take with us to keep the void beneath well and truly hidden.

This is a great problem for humanity. We must presuppose so much in order to function. Whether we’re religious or not, simply existing takes something of a leap of faith, be it faith in ourselves, faith in others, faith in the laws of logic, faith in our subjective truths, etc.

You may be thinking, “Oh no, she’s going to preach to us about God now isn’t she?” And yes, I am, but not like you might think.

Religion provides some powerful strings to guide us through life, showing us where and how to pick up the best fabrics and design the perfect coat, but just like in all things, the moment people proclaim a truth as Truth, it becomes a falsehood. There is no more Truth to be found in religion than anywhere else, no matter what some apologists might say. Most religions are designed to show people the void. They are taken to the edge of the unknown, shown the nothing beyond the veil, stripped, and emptied out; fresh vessels ready to be filled with happily bought falsehoods.

This isn’t to say religion is inherently bad, no, just inherently human and constructed like everything else we’ve built. No one has the answers we seek. No one can, and anyone claiming they do is a liar who probably just wants to control you for personal, political, or financial gain.

I’m no better, I want to control you too, but I want to control you in such ways as to enable you to control yourself. As I peel back the layers hiding the void in others, I’m careful to whisper, “It’s okay to be empty. It’s okay to be no one. It’s okay to be small. It’s okay to be meaningless,” It’s okay that all of this is true. It is absurd, we’ll likely never make any sense out of it as our senses are so limited, but that’s no reason not to try.

Trying, against all odds, to exist is really what life is about at its core. We can’t know, we can’t understand, but we can always try. Now and then if we try, almost will be good enough; almost existing, almost speaking Truth or almost living our lives by it, almost prolonging life, almost sharing burdens, etc etc. Anything that stops us from trying cannot be a good thing. Truth, therefore is not a good thing. When we think we have found Truth, we stop seeking it and raise our falsehoods in praise above our heads, shouting them to the heavens for all to see and hear our grotesque imaginings. That is the one thing we should never do.

The Bible says money is the root of all evil. That’s a lie, the root of all evil is Truth itself. Money can be the root of all evil if, perchance, money were your Truth and you live your life acting to maximize potential for it. But then again, maybe good and evil don’t exist at all.

Maybe, somehow, in some great cosmic contradiction, none of this is true at all and I’m just as wrong as everyone else upholding falsehoods, but it seems likely to me given none of us is capable of answering the most fundamental questions, that it has to be true, but I’ve been surprised plenty of times before, particularly by existing in the first place!

Whatever this experience of existing actually is; whatever my nature and the nature of reality are, I’m glad I’m here and I’m compelled from the void on out to try to understand it and my place in it. Whether or not I actually have a place is irrelevant, it’s the trying itself that matters; we should never stop trying.

I think that if we maintain critical awareness of our limitations and flaws, seeing ourselves at all times as the Emperor and knowing we have no clothes, we would all be able to navigate our experiences more effectively. We might always be aware of our limitations and flaws, constantly coping with them and never living in denial of them, and we might become less susceptible to people offering truths in order to control us for personal, political, or financial gains. We might become less likely to lie to ourselves and to others. Rather than taking on coats and burying ourselves under falsehoods, we might live comfortably naked and mad, but always trying to prove ourselves wrong.

For me, that’s a hopeful thought and I hope it’s good food for yours. I’m great at being wrong! It’s one of few things I can actually do right, and I’m sure you can too if you try.

I wish I had more to offer, but beyond that, all we have is subjectivity. We tell truth at our best when we embrace our limitations and flaws, and pour our subjective experience into one another like wine, from one ineffable void to another. I’ll leave you with a song that does exactly that and a hope you might create truths to share with us one day too. Enjoy!

If you hate the taste of wine
Why do you drink it ’til you’re blind?
And if you swear that there’s no truth and who cares
How come you say it like you’re right?
Why are you scared to dream of God
When it’s salvation that you want?
You see stars that clear have been dead for years
But the idea just lives on
In our wheels that roll around
As we move over the ground
And all day it seems we’ve been in between
The past and future town

We are nowhere, and it’s now
We are nowhere, and it’s now

And like a ten minute dream in the passenger seat
While the world was flying by
I haven’t been gone very long
But it feels like a lifetime

I’ve been sleeping so strange at night
Side effects they don’t advertise
I’ve been sleeping so strange
With a head full of pesticide

I’ve got no plans and too much time
I feel too restless to unwind
I’m always lost in thought as I walk a block
To my favorite neon sign
Where the waitress looks concerned
But she never says a word
Just turns the jukebox on and we hum along
And I smile back at her
And my friend comes after work
When the features start to blur
She says these bars are filled with things that kill
By now you probably should have learned
Did you forget that yellow bird?
How could you forget your yellow bird?
She took a small silver wreath and pinned it on to me
She said, “This one will bring you love”
And I don’t know if it’s true
But I keep it for good luck..

2 thoughts on “Roots: Strings

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