Sojourn for Truth by teZa Lord
My soul always wanted to know its own Truth. When I began to seek in earnest my own version of Truth, it was at the end of a very long and tortured ride in my family of origin, who gave me no answers except “No!” As soon as I could, I’d started running as far away as I possibly could from the previous versions of life I’d been hoodwinked to believe as “truth” by my childhood caregivers. I had to re-sort and re-evaluate everything for myself, in my desire to learn about my own Truth.
As soon as I hit puberty, I wanted out from other people’s versions of what I knew wasn’t my Truth. I smelled something fishy in others’ truths I’d been handed, like pabulum given to me, just another crying baby’s need-to-know. So naturally, I quickly became a rebel. When I graduated from high school, I didn’t even return to my seat in the auditorium. I waved to stunned watchers, left the building, and rushed to get my already-packed suitcase, hidden under my teenage bed, jumping on a freedom bus to start my life of searching for my Truth.
Truth or Conspiracy?
Like you, when I first started receiving internet alerts and warnings about impending dangers in our world, I got scared. I have a vivid memory of my very first. It was an email from a close friend, sharing highly alarming news about a disaster that would be detrimental to the entire human race—if I didn’t know about these unseen dangers. Such as governments’ purposefully controlling weather patterns through air traffic contrails, EMFs’ invisible energy causing grave illnesses to the masses, and myriad more panicky alarm bells being set off via well-meaning, quickly transmitted written words. My sole purpose of sending an ensuing spam-alarm was to help save us, not add fuel to what came to be called conspiracy theories.
A few decades ago, maybe you overreacted with concern, as I did. I felt it was my duty to spread the word, to inform everyone I knew about these dreadful disasters coming at us … about what would happen if we didn’t all know the truth and do something about it Right Away! If you did what I did, you too, next felt the same hot shame and innocent guilt after learning the truth behind these paranoid theories. That no such threats existed. That I had become a victim of someone else’s—either intentional or unintentional—spread of misinformation.
It’s Easy to Get Swayed by Lies
After my first embarrassed taste of having spread needless lies, I became more suspicious. Even when a close friend tried to convince me (usually in an email or social media post) that some other terrible event was underway, or would occur if I wasn’t aware of its life-or-death threat. After that first time however, when thankfully, friends wrote me back, politely informing me of my having been misled, I clearly realized how prevalent conspiracy theories are. And how easily some of us get swayed by them. But that was only the beginning of what is now a staunchly impacting trend. This has been proven by the ensuing nearly two-decades worth of misinformation that has landed us here. Then the Electoral College of the United State formally met and voted-in President-elect Biden, despite the ongoing claims of now formally defeated President Trump, who falsely claimed corruption in the American voting process.
As I scratch my head in disbelief at how so many still cling to obvious and not-so-obvious versions of truth, in all the warped interpretations a group of persons can make up to fill the unlimited air around them—I realize how easy it is for certain people to become one of the angry mob, shouting how their candidate had been robbed of the election. It is weren’t for the kind correcting done by compassionate friends, so long ago now, who steered me in the direction of “how to check urban legends” (as conspiracies were at first called on this marvelous new tool, the internet), I too might have continued being unduly swayed by others’ angry proclamations. Fortunately, I have learned to think out aggravating circumstances for myself.
Where to Go for Our Truthful Information
And so, I made the choice to be a “smart citizen” in the ever-expanding possibilities of our modern digital age. After that first embarrassing experience, back in the nineties, of having plunged in and “believed” enough to tell others some dangerous “truth”—without doing any research on my part as to the validity of that information I’d been blithely handed by others, I knew I had to get serious about truth-seeking.
No doubt the spreaders of fear mean well, as I had. People who are unsuspecting as to the dubious origins of such earlier conspiracies as: the millennium’s expected disruption of all the worldwide web; then in the early aughts, Obama’s birth country; right up to today’s fears some expound about health dangers of the Covid vaccine and those surrounding the new 5G cellular network.
Today, I try my best to determine what is true and what isn’t. I doubled up my guard against misinformation, liars, and out-and-out evil. I use the site, Snopes, that debunks internet myths and conspiracy theories at every whiff of suspected falsehoods, innuendos, or the slightest sign of rampant misinformation on the web. I and many others have grown to trust the site.
A prequel to today’s confusing worldwide web-style rash of Truth vs. Nontruth was how I got to do another kind of heavy-duty Truth-seeking earlier in life.
It happened when I needed to understand my very existence. Notice I use a capital “T” to spell out this certain kind of Truth I’m referring to, as opposed to, say, the truth of my parent’s religion of a life based upon the fear and/or reward of heaven and hell; or my cultural upbringing’s consensus of success based on work, marriage, and having kids; and other so-called truths derived from the American post WWII society I was born into, its affectations, my education, my exposure to aesthetics, and yipes! let’s not forget the sway and importance of politics!
Seek and Ye Shall Find the Truth
It took a lot of time, effort, to find my Truth, and I won’t say it was easy. But I knew there had to be a reasonable iteration of truth out there, somewhere, that would satiate my yearnings-to-know. My quest took me to faraway places, to wild and crazy experiences, to many cultures besides my own. I don’t regret one iota my incessant searching, researching, and experimentation. I had to know my own Truth. And when I found it, I was so grateful, my heart burst with joy because I’d never given up. My reward: to know everything I need is right inside me.
All told, these adventures are the “meat” of the books I write, the art I make, and the ideas I think worthy of spreading via my communication skills. Today, mine is a Truth of spreading positive, hope-filled thinking: however, wherever I can. Everyone’s journey takes them down exactly the “right path” they’re individually meant to explore. Every person who ventures to find their own Truth shall find it. Even if it winds up being the original one they’d started out from.
Which wasn’t the case for me.