posted June 18, 2006 01:07 AM
Honest and for True
by John Collins
I saw an old Greek fellow wandering the streets the other evening holding a lantern out in front of himself, scanning the storefronts, alleyways, and passing cars. He looked kind of disappointed. I can't say as I blame him.
I don't mean to be a Cynic, but I think Diogenes' task of finding an honest man was probably a lot easier in his day than it is in ours. In fact, dishonesty and deception are so pervasive in today's society that we've constructed entire lexicons of larcenous and libelous language for the everyday use of politicians, lawyers, and ex-football stars.
As you've probably guessed, this issue's Origins focusses on honesty. This is apropos, actually, since the main purpose of the column is to help uncover the truth behind everyday sayings. Now, time to get to the Naked Truth.
But what is Truth, really, and why is it naked. Well, Truth, it seems, is a tall, skinny fellow, slightly balding, with a protruding Adam's apple, very scholarly and, of course, modest and reserved, though occasionally a little self-righteous. One day, lo these many years agone, Truth and his rather slovenly counterpart, Falsehood, were strolling together through the woods (they were often together, as they are quite dependent on each other — what is the light of Truth, after all, without the darkness of Falsehood against which to compare it?). They were chatting amiably, as was their wont, though not paying much attention to each other:
Truth: "Beauty is truth, truth beauty — that is all ye know on earth, and all ye need know."
Falsehood: "Truth, sir, is a cow, which will yield people no more milk, and so they are gone to milk the bull."
Truth: "If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people."
Falsehood: "In matters of grave importance, style, not sincerity, is the vital thing."
Their friendly discourse was interrupted by the appearance of a lovely lake (well, okay, the lake didn't actually appear, it was sort of already there and they just happened upon it). On a hot day such as the one on which we are visiting the companions, it was a welcome sight, and they both stripped naked — see where this is going now? — and jumped in.
Truth was splashing pleasantly about enjoying the natural honesty of the little fishies when Falsehood challenged him to swim to the other side of the lake. As it wasn't all that far (and as Truth was, truth to tell, a tad gullible), Truth took the challenge and set off for the far shore. No sooner was he twenty yards away, however, than Falsehood splashed up to the beach and stole Truth's clothes for himself, since they were much finer than his old rags.
When Truth got back from his little excursion, he saw Falsehood parading around on the shore in Truth's finery. When asked about his actions, Falsehood replied, "Since Truth is beauty, you don't need these nice clothes. You can wear mine." And with that, he walked off into the woods.
Truth slogged out of the lake and looked down at the little pile of stained robes left by Falsehood. "I would rather," he announced to no one in particular, "walk naked than wear the raiments of Falsehood!" And henceforth, he walks the earth as Naked Truth.
So, there it is, the unadulterated truth about Truth.
~I intend to continue learning forever~"Fayte"
~I am still learning~ Michangelo
The Door to Gnosis is never permanently locked...one only needs the correct keys and passwords.
The pious man with closed eyes can often hold more ego than a proud man with open eyes.
Out of the mouth of babes commeth wisdom that can rival that of sages.
In the rough, or cut and polished..a diamond is still a precious gem.