true path

“Three things cannot be long hidden.
The sun, the moon, and the truth.”
– Buddha

There is a myth about truth that I’ve seen cause many people to overly complicate their lives.

It has two parts.

The first is that the truth is unwelcome and often painful, and the second is that kindness and tact frequently require us to lie.

While the idea of truth is often scary, the reality of it is in fact something we all deeply crave and instinctively relax in the presence of. This is because the energy of truth is neither defensive nor judgmental, it simply is, and as such we experience relief in its presence.

Stating what’s wrong instead of pretending everything is fine allows air in and makes change possible. Continuing to avoid perpetuates problems.

Allow me to explain.

We tell lies and avoid because truth is uncontrollable. It has no agenda and doesn’t care what happens to us. Lies on the other hand hold our best interests at heart. They live and die by our wants and exist solely to make us happy.

The trouble is, lies are terrible at their job. They usually ensure the situation we were trying to avoid by telling them, because they are a function of the story that says, “This bad thing could happen.” As such they ultimately create and amplify the things we specifically don’t want.

A minor example is about a year ago I decided a teacher wasn’t working for me. I was paying him every month for coaching that to me no longer felt effective. I imagined saying something to him would only cause problems, so instead said that I couldn’t afford to continue the sessions.

He saw through my lie and insisted I tell him the truth. When I did, we had a meaningful conversation and he adjusted his coaching in ways that felt more directly relevant to my needs. I experienced hugely positive shifts in future sessions thanks to telling my truth in that moment, rather than walking away with the story that he couldn’t help me.

Truth is a change agent. It breaks up unhealthy dynamics and allows for the greatest potential of a situation to be experienced.

My teacher could have actually been a bad fit for me, in which case telling the truth would have driven us apart rather than strengthening his role in my life. Truth gives way to the best case scenario, because it always leads to greater levels of itself.

It’s important to note that facing the truth doesn’t always involve speaking it. If your advice or opinion is unasked for, giving it tends to lead to more harm than good. In such a situation, taking the advice yourself you wish to give to the other person is what’s called for. This is rarely easy, but can have hugely positive effects for both you and the other person.

Also, if you are in an extreme situation in which lying could potentially save lives or otherwise prevent harm, you can lie while still being aligned with truth because you are responding to the reality of the situation.

Truth has timing. It knows when it needs to be shared and in what way, breaking through always at the level people are ready to hear it.

If you try to push it with your own agenda – to prove a point, make someone wrong, defend yourself, etc – you may well encounter negative reactions, cause harm, or (most commonly) find that nothing changes. This is because you’re energy is invested more in what you want than in what’s needed, which has the same energetic alignment as lying.

When you have no agenda except to express what is there, you let truth lead. Then you speak when there is something useful to say, and remain silent when nothing needs to be said.

Your communication becomes non-confrontational and deeply effective, which is far more kind and tactful than any lie.

When you recognize that facing the truth at worst allows what’s going to happen anyway to happen faster and more conveniently, and at best (and most commonly) for a positive outcome you never would have imagined, it becomes much easier to embrace in daily life.

Then there is no hesitation. You open the letter from the bank, admit when you were wrong, ask for help, express your doubts in a relationship, go to the doctor, and more simply because that’s what the situation calls for.

​Anything that happens after that will arise from the energy of truth, not fear.