Every so often we must deal with an unpleasant truth we wish would just go away. Sometimes the truth can be very shocking and we find ourselves inadequately prepared to handle it. That’s when denial comes to the rescue— and what can’t be denied can always be rationalized away.
Ignorance is Bliss
Avoiding truth is not so much a function of ignorance or intelligence but rather conditioning and programming. Being able to convince ourselves that a pertinent truth is neither relevant nor important is a feat worthy of some note. We’ve all been thoroughly schooled on how to do just that. We’ve been told repeatedly in our lives how to think and what to believe and so it becomes somewhat natural to impose these same edicts upon ourselves. If something seems too dangerous to handle we simply label it as such and avoid it at all costs.
…If something doesn’t match our sensibilities and reasonable expectations we are quick to dismiss it. For those who decide to accept a difficult truth, they are torn by decision and run the risk of changing the way they see the world. For some it can create a paradigm shift or an awakening. They might begin to question all that they once held as true. Everything would then fall under doubt and scrutiny. How many people are truly willing to upset the proverbial apple cart to this extent for a glimpse of bitter truth?
I have found this number to be few. Most would rather accept the status quo and not make ripples in their world. There are logical reasons for this and I would be challenged to dispute such a mindset. But truth has a way of anchoring deep within us even when it comes uninvited. Whether we like it or not, truth is truth.
Sometimes we feel intimately connected with an institution or belief. If we love, for example, our country or religion, then we are likely to only see the good things about it. We don’t want to know about the dark side. This is not important. More apple pie and ice cream please. Ah, such a good life. If and when presented with an uncomfortable truth, many will simply dismiss it. The lie they believe is more attractive than the truth they’ve been served. In conversation they may offer cursory lip service and feigned interest, but when it really comes down to it they can care less about this truth you bring. It’s water under the bridge for them —the same water which they swim in.
It can be heartbreaking indeed when one realizes the institution they so ardently believe in is not what they thought it was. Now as we near the anniversary of the tragic events of 9/11, our sensibilities and intuitive knowing are once again feeling challenged. There are many “truths” people have dismissed because it defies all that they hold on to. Yes, and so a life of mediocrity and illusion is chosen above reality. More apple pie please.
Chess and Deduction
There was a time I was a pretty good chess player. I don’t mean to toot my own horn, but I was rarely beaten. But that was a while ago and most any state level player would surely make me eat my words along with my tinfoil hat. That being said I do know the rules of the game and how to play to win.
Chess is a strategy game. An expert player utilizes many tactics ranging from logic and deduction to deception. One of my best moves with less experienced players was to make them think I didn’t know what I was doing. I use to call it my “Colombo” maneuver after the detective show from the 1970’s. Deception is an interesting aspect to the game indeed. Sometimes I would forgo my queen as a ruse. Only a dummy would lose their queen early in the game. But you have to give up something really good to make the ruse work.
The powers that (want to be) are master chess players. I am both humbled and appalled by their methods. I play an aggressive game—but all I can think about is knocking my opponent’s “king” right off his little Masonic square. The master players are patient and will think long and hard between each move. They rarely make mistakes. Every move has purpose and meaning. Sometimes they too will sacrifice a major figure on the board to move their plan forward.
When I reflect on the events of 9/11, I see a whole lot of chess playing. This was a carefully orchestrated game indeed. And while I’m not prepared to point fingers at any particular group or organization, I am aware of the “sacrificial” pieces that were set in play. They weren’t queens or knights, pawns or rooks— they were skyscrapers. One chess player can’t fool another. Whether on a board or played in real life, I know these moves from a mile away. But not all the pieces fell like they were supposed to. Something clearly went wrong. There was one piece that stood alone and had to be taken off the board in a very brash, inexplicable and self-destructive way. This is the chess equivalent of the illegal move of simply grabbing the piece from the board as a frustrated child might do. Ah yes, the cold chess master blinked as there was no errant plane (or whatever else) to cover the ruse of the collapse of Building Seven.
Who among us has not awakened to this clarion call? I ask and wonder. What else does one need? She fell in front of us for all to see, to bear witness and to comprehend. Forty seven stories of exceptional construction, metal and concrete, yielded to a simple fire—so they say. Eighty-one vertical columns, forty-seven stories of steel-framed perfection dropped into its own footprint in nary 6.5 seconds. Perfectly normal, of course, assuming laws of physics and reason don’t apply. World Trade Center Building Seven should resonate at the core of each and every one of us. If it does not then perhaps the lie has gotten the best of us. The sleepwalkers would rather jump into the murky water than face a truth of this magnitude. I would offer them a safety line if I could, but it seems they would rather drift away into their sea of mediocrity and indifference. And it is so — and so be it.
I cannot live in that world of make-believe. Like so many others, I’ve been accosted by truth and I have found that truth has indeed that magical quality of setting us free. So agonizing over a bitter reality seems a small price to pay when it comes right down to it. And so as I pick up the pieces of Seven, I pause and reflect about the meaning of it all. You see, that building spoke in ways hard to describe. I love what she stood for, not because she was merely a building, but because she woke so many of us in the thunderous roar of her climatic fall.
And yet there are those of admirable intelligence that still cannot see or will not see. Their paradigm simply won’t allow it. But to what end does it affect me? It does. This is not merely a battle rooted in science and logic but rather in the heart, mind and consciousness of Humankind. The non-seers and the “won’t- seers” seem to shirk their duty of an enlightened Human. To jump off the path and swim beyond this towering spectacle of resonate truth seems inexcusable and unacceptable to me. Where are we as a race when we dismiss such a trumpeting call to wake? Do we simply forget how this building fell before us?