Tag Archives: mastery

Pyramid of Truth

Friends,

When it comes to human perception and comprehension, I think absolute truth is mostly unknowable. We tend to float around the truth with approximations of it shaded by our own biases, perspective and rigor in pursuing knowledge on that tack. If there is a fixed, universal truth, we may as well consider it an unreachable, imperceptible ideal which we strive toward in what is essentially an act of faith. We simply don’t have the faculties to perceive/comprehend it, though we can get closer and infinitely closer approximations of it.

Honestly though, we could almost consider this inability to reach/perceive/comprehend truth a mercy, for imagine how much difficulty we would have if, grasping the complete truth we tried to communicate it to our fellows. Rare is the individual who can communicate the truth of something without bias and rarer still the one who can listen and hear without objection.

Instead, I think that human perceptions of truth in any realm are like looking up at the top of a pyramid -where you stand around the base might give you a view of the north, south, east and west-facing aspects of the top (and that might be considered your politics/religion/school of thought/prejudices on that issue). But the higher you advance upward from that position at the base, in that linear mindset? Your view of the truth/tip stays the same (though maybe the fine details get clearer)

Think about it; the only way to gain a more complete view of the tip is to walk around the base. To carry the analogy further, this is akin to holding, and perhaps even arguing, different positions to experientially understand their truth. A simple example, might be a lifelong Marxist vs. an someone who became Marxist after spending most of their life as a Rational Choice Individualist: in this scenario, who might be said to have a more complete view of the truth? I would say the latter. It matters little how you move from position and stance throughout your life, what matters instead is how much work and effort you put into understanding each position as you adhere to it.

If you think about each position, you walk around the base.

If you talk about each position, you walk around the mid-portion of the pyramid.

If you do/live/act each position, you traipse about the upper portion with a closer view of each side of the tip.

And whether circling the pyramid at the bottom, middle or top, what happens when you see the pinnacle, the ideal, the tip from all directions? Well, if you can remember accurately how it looked from each perspective you can put together in your mind’s eye a composite image of the entire tip -something that can only be seen in real-time from above as if you were aloft above the pyramid looking down at it. And knowing what the entire tip/truth looks like is at least as good as, if not better than, seeing it.

Isn’t this a transcendence of that particular issue/question/pyramid/hierarchy?

I would say yes.

What I said earlier about the absolute truth being unknowable notwithstanding, there are many microcosmic domains whose pyramids of truth we have ascended and transcended in our individual lives. These are the domains where we might be said to have achieved mastery, or at least something functionally close to it. And even if the idea of inequality implied by ascending the pyramid troubles you due to a commitment to social justice, you can’t deny that as we build up our skills and aptitudes and knowledge, it certainly feels like we are ascending above others.

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The pyramid never ceases to amaze me and enlighten me as a a conceptual tool for understanding the world and complex ideas. If only ancient people had erected pyramids everywhere on the planet to signify how key they were to understanding universal truth.

Best,
-Dre

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Humility is a Game of Limbo

Friends,

If you have been keeping up with my writing as of late, you may recall that I am doing some soul-searching about what the right path forward is in life. One thing which has come up a lot over the last couple of years is going back to school, and the field of discipline that keeps coming up is massage therapy. The hands are sacred; they are our interface with the world, and the more I learn the more I come to think/agree that our ability to think clearly and logically has a lot to do with our proficiency with our hands.

There are many things we can do with our hands; many ways we can make them skilled. Just over a year ago I started playing guitar and its made my hands a lot less…’stupid’. If the above assertion about the hand/brain connection holds true, then my brain is a lot less stupid also. If I can train my hands in even more sophisticated ways, what might it be possible for me to do with them, and by association, with my brain?

I like healing people. I like massage for that purpose. It’s a pure form of healing. Massage is to medicine what stand-up comedy is to entertainment. No team, no no complicated scheduling, no chemicals, no expensive apparatus. Just a motherfucker, a microphone/jar of coconut oil, and an audience.

I’m good at it. I have an aptitude, and even rudimentary skills. But its an important enough skill to learn more and have a better foundation in.

Taking a cursory look at RMT degree programs, I noticed right away that there are pre-requisites I don’t possess. Chiefly high-school biology. So, if I decide to go this route I will have to go way back and brush up on high-school courses for admittance. That is irksome, but I can imagine it being fun and, as per the title, humbling.

I ordered my high-school transcripts today so that I can present them to the adult learning center if I need to. I’m on the fence right now about whether to go forth into the world and travel once again and I hope that the next few days make the decision clearer, but even if I do leave again, I can hopefully do these courses remotely and get them done.

I should have gotten them done in high school, but a stupid teacher made an untrue comment about the nature of studying biology and I was completely disenchanted by the whole subject. Now however, it feels like it might be time to go back and make up for what was mistakenly neglected.

On the Billy Madison tip!

Best,
-Dre

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Sometimes I Sound Like a 15 Year Old Girl

Friends,

I am restless. I am back in Canada. I want to be on the road again. I will stay until Canada Day at least. I have an obligation that I mustn’t miss. That’s just over a month. Not enough time to put down roots. Not enough to really even rekindle friendships that have been stretched by distance and time apart.

I’m scared. Everyone is getting older. I’m not all I could be. I want to be around for them but it doesn’t seem worth it. Not while there is still so much doing and improving to be undertaken. People I have fallen out of touch with, even the people whom I love most in the world, have just sort of faded into the background of my life. Into a grey. They, and their problems, and their stories.

I’ve learned I can live without some people. I’ve learned I have to live apart from others. The ‘people’ I can’t live without? I haven’t met that person yet. But I’m open to it.

I’m alone, but…

I’m hopeful. I have faith in the righteousness of my path. I have faith in the example I am/can be for others. I have faith because I have broken faith before and tried to fit in a life that wasn’t mine, and I know where tat road leads. I have faith in heaven because I have experienced hell.

It was comfortable. It was safe. It was perfect. It wasn’t for me.

I’m faced with that choice again: The choice to stay in the warm suffocating embrace and accept, what is to me, mediocrity, or to double down and keep this momentum going.

I have to keep it going. To stake my life on it and make the ultimate commitment to….

I don’t have a word for it, yet. But every day, the picture gets a little clearer.

God bless,
-Dre

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