Teilhard de Chardin concluded that, “Truth is the complete coherence of the universe in relation to every point contained within it.”
On the long road towards this ultimate manifestation of Truth we move from one partial truth to another. These ‘truths’ are like stepping-stones to our final destination.
As a human family we live in different cultural and psychological realities with each person owning a belief system that declares what they hold to be true about themselves, others and the world around them. This self-generated story defines how we function in the world and ideally, it continues to expand and become more refined as we are exposed to more of the truths of other stories.
The art of understanding each other and learning to work together is to truly know from where we are each coming by appreciating the many riches contained in the stories and ‘mental models’ operating inside the collective psyche. A mental model is a belief formed by our cultural and family upbringing along with our individual biases. A belief is not the actual ‘Truth’, rather, it is the closest approximation of the truth that we are able to articulate in any particular moment.
Mental models allow us to interpret the world around us and to give it meaning. The danger comes, however, when they become fixed points of belief and are not open to change. This immobile point of view, or interpretive fixation, can lead to someone believing that they have the only claim on what is right and true and that all other points of view are therefore invalid.
When any one story – be it cultural, religious or political – becomes locked in place and fixed in the mind and held to be the ultimate truth, then it will automatically come into conflict with other stories and set the stage for ideological wars.
Every epoch in history is an opportunity to write the next chapter in the great story of humanity. It would appear that our present civilization is in serious need of a major upgrade. A new collective story has to be written that is the grand synthesis of all the dreams and aspirations alive in the hearts and minds of our diverse world family.
As the saying goes, “If you want to change the world then you need to change the conversation!” Changing the conversation changes the story. Imagine if the three Principles of Essential Divinity, Goodwill and Unanimity were woven like golden threads throughout the tapestry of the new collective narrative. I believe this would help us write a far truer story.
The Principle of Essential Divinity reflects our true nature by affirming that every person is a sacred fractal of the One Life while Goodwill reveals the truth of love in action and Unanimity declares the truth of our interdependence and mutual coherence as one global family.
A spiritual maxim says that, ‘energy follows thought’ which means that everything we think, say and do contributes to the writing of our new collective story. Our daily conversations and actions either reinforce the old story or bring to life a promise of what is possible and preferred.
For the new story to be endowed with our highest qualities and aspirations it needs to be crafted by both heart and mind in every moment of every day. The invitation to participate as a co-author in this Magnum Opus of a new civilization has been issued by the Soul of Humanity. Each of us has a choice as to how we will most powerfully and effectively respond to this creative opportunity. Failure to respond ensures the continuing reign of the old.
For those people entrapped in the old story who have lost faith and are unable to sense the longed-for brighter future that is already emerging, I pray they may hear and register the encouraging words of Arundhati Roy.
“Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, if you listen carefully, you can hear her breathing.”
image courtesy Derek Finch / CC 2.0