Verum Est Rare Putus Quod Nuncam Simplex
I am not proficient in Latin but the title is supposed to read: “The truth is rarely pure and never simple.” (If anyone knows Latin and my translation needs improvement, please do let me know so that I can fix it. Thank You.) This is a quote from Oscar Wilde. I love his witty writing and I have memorized many of his genial quotes.
I do believe that “the truth is rarely pure and never simple.” Depending on one’s perception, something could be viewed from different angles thus, understood differently. The cup half-full or cup half-empty idea comes to mind: two different ways of seeing the same thing.
I appreciate Truth although I do know that often times, Truth is relative. And often-times, we make-up our own Truths, whatever works for us. For me, Truth is in the eye of the beholder. I always try to understand a Truth from the perspective of whoever is talking about Truth.
I also know that due to our limited perception, we cannot know many things for sure. Here, I often bring-up the notion of a chair: that wooden thing with wooden legs and a wooden back support (well, nowadays they are not always made of wood but let us just play along on this one). We know a chair only from what other people have told us as children. We were shown a chair, someone pointed at it and said: “chair”. Like the little monkeys we are (or parrots – I like parrots, I am much like a parrot), we repeated it enough times that now we see a “chair” and we think: “chair”. Yet, is it a chair?
If we were to ask the chair “are You a chair”, I am not sure if we would get a positive answer. Thus, we cannot know the thing in itself (Imannuel Kant); we only make-up ideas which we then, hold as Truth. That is why, for me “the truth is rarely pure and never simple”.
There are not many truths I can categorically say that they are true. Regarding my own person … I am chasing the Truth – that is one truth. "I am", would be a second truth … It is quite difficult in my opinion to find something which is clearly true, without any ambiguity. Yet, so many people hold so many little things as truths … many people seem to make-up/invent all kinds of ideas and then, hold them to be true.
In reality though (of this three dimensional perspective), “the truth is rarely pure and never simple” – Oscar Wilde.
I wish everyone well. All the best!
Note: My photograph, Alberta, Canada - Summer of 2011