‘Truth’ has been debated for centures. A lot has been said about it over the years. Personally, I believe that there is no ‘ultimate truth’ nor any single truth. What is ‘truth’ is different for different people. Not only that, ‘truth’ changes with ones life experiences and age. In addition, it also changes with a persons state of mind. ‘Truth’ for a person that is in a depressed mood is not the same as ‘truth’ when a person is in a happy mood for example. As a result, ‘truth’ seems to change with ones condition in life and in a persons situation.
My experience has made me develop a saying which describes my perspective: Truth is relevence.
What this means is that all that is true is what is relevent to you and your situation. By ‘relevence’ I mean something that affects us and impacts us directly. Anything that is out of our condition-of-relevence is meaningless really. If you go out in the woods, for example, and look at a tree you’ll see an example. What is ‘true’ for the tree is only what is relevent to it . . . and nothing else. It only concerns itself with what matters. What does it matter what is going on in the next valley or on the other side of the world for that matter? What does it matter what shape bugs are? What does it matter who the president is? What does it matter? It only concerns itself with what is relevent to it and effects it directly. These include things like if the soil is wet or nutrient enough, if the sun is shining, if there is a disease that infected it, and so on. Everthing else is meaningless.
Nowadays, we have begun to spend too much of our life concerning ourselves about things that have absolutely no relevence to us at all. We have to go to school and learn information that has no meaning, we are bombarded with news from here and there which mean nothing to us, and so on. We’ve begun to live in an era of ‘non-relevence’. What use, really, is knowing what element the sun consists of or its temperature? Does knowing the laws of physics really impact my life? Does it really matter if you can do algebra or not? Why even waste our time with the economic affairs of Japan? Does knowing who the Mayor is really that important? All this is stuff that really doesn’t mean that much to most people . . . it’s non-relevent.
If we were to truly live in a condition of what-is-relevent-to-us we wouldn’t have to know or be aware of three quarters, probably, of what we know. By living in a condition of non-relevence we tend to burden ourselves with stuff that does not matter. It makes us have to know and worry over unnecessary stuff. As a result, it creates a stressful lifestyle.
As we grow older, I think, it is best for us to try to live in a more ‘relevent’ way and to try to shed things that are ‘non-relevent’. This is no easy thing, particularly after living in a ‘non-relevent’ lifestyle for so long.
Also, keep in mind that what is relevent changes, as I said earlier, with ones state of mind. In regard to relevency I have always said this: What is important is what is relevent to me, my state of mind, and my situation at the moment.
It easy to be dragged into a condition of ‘non-relevence’. In fact, its too easy. Many things seem to be relevent to us . . . but they’re not. I’ve found that one way to find out if something is relevent to us is to disregard something we suspect is relevent. If nothing happens (that is, it does not affect us) then it is really not relevent to us. By doing this I have been stunned how most things are really non-relevent to us and don’t matter. If I find that something is not relevent then I try to disregard it. Over time, this becomes like a shedding away of unnecessary things. In a way, it’s like a ‘house cleaning’ . . . and what a relief that can be . . .
Another thing that easily drags us into worrying about non-relevent things is the need to work and do things in life. A big part of life is working and doing things. This requires us to ‘extend ourselves’ into things we normally wouldn’t do. This exposes us to continual conditions that may or may not be relevent. It becomes difficult to tell what is relevent and what is not. From this situation it is easy to become engrossed with non-relevent things. Because of this a big part of living a relevent life is to keep work ‘contained’, so to speak, in its specific area and to not blow work out of proportion.
Another thing that drags us into non-relevency is the need to worry over things. People always talk about worry as if it is a bad thing. In actuality it is not. Like many other things, it only becomes bad when it becomes excessive. The fact is that worry is a part of life and helps place us in the world. To worry over things makes us human and gives us meaning. The problem is that worry tends to drag us into non-relevency, particularly when it gets out of control. As a result, a big part of living a relevent life is learning how to worry properly and over the right things.
Another problem, at least for me, which tends to sink us into non-relevency is boredom. When we’re bored we often try to do things that expose us to things that are not relevent. Not only that, the solution to boredom often seems to be to do things that are non-relevent, as it makes life interesting. Slowly, this slips us into a life of non-relevency as our drive for something interesting to do moves us away from things that are relevent in life.
Living a relevent life, I think, is not easy. It’s actually a simple life, almost boring and insignificant. But it has a great depth and permenency with it. I feel that, in actuality, life is better grasped in the simple relevent lifestyle than in the glamorous non-relevent life.