“But how do you know you’re right Dad” asked my 12 year old son after I gave him my opinion on advice he’d received from a school teacher that butter was ‘bad’.
It’s a great question and a tough one to answer, especially to a child.
To benefit from the truth you have to be prepared to see the world from different perspectives, and if you haven’t the capacity to do this you can never appreciate the deeper nuances of human life and you can never benefit from having the edges knocked off you and becoming more rounded and therefore more useful to the world. In fact, you could say that a ridged inability (or unwillingness) to see other perspectives is a form of mental disease.
As young energetic college students we are happy to march behind flags and shout mono dimensional slogans sticking it to ‘The Man’ because we are frustrated at being a mere tail that gets wagged by the dog at the dogs’ whim.
But when we grow up (if we ever do) we come to realise that there really are different valid perspectives (and there are invalid ones too of course – just because someone shouts doesn’t mean they have anything worthwhile to say!), and that our universe-centric infantile view of things is...well just that.
But it’s hard to do this because we feel SO STRONGLY that we are right, it becomes part of our identity, and once something is part of our identity it is so much more difficult to separate ourselves from it and see things objectively.
How do I know butter is good for you?
I don’t have the answers my clients need, they do. My job is to help them find it and recognise it and then act on it. They find their own truth.
This is one of those philosophical grey areas that gives people a headache – what do you mean ‘their own truth’? Surely there is only ONE real truth?
I say No. There are factual truths we all agree on…like the existence of gravity (even though we still don’t really know what it is in essence), but when it comes to individuals there can be many truths and each of us must find our own. This is so difficult for many people to accept because at heart we long for the peace of mind inherent in an infants’ binary view of the world…Yes/No, Wrong/Right. It’s simpler, but it’s not accurate.
Butter can be factually proven to contain numerous nutrients that can elevate the health of your body, but your body may not accept it, or might only accept it up to a certain degree.
But why then do the powers that be teach us that it is generally bad?
I can’t get into this right now…it’s a long story that much more articulate people than me are better at telling.
The process of finding your own truth is hampered by a desire to have simplistic answers.
How I help my clients find their way out of infertility is not what most people imagine it might be – I don’t present them with a to do list that gets them there, instead we engage in a process of mutual discovery and it’s only because I have been down that road so many times that I am any good at interpreting the signposts we find along the way.
The key to it all is to have a clear goal. This is a deep truth that works well in all aspects of life, not just infertility, and being pregnant is definitely a super clear goal to have.
I almost wrote “wanting to be pregnant is a super clear goal to have” …but that would have been wrong. If you say your goal is ‘wanting to be pregnant’…then you have already achieved it, what you really mean to say is you want to BE pregnant.
This kind of clarity is what enables us to find the truth of the person’s life because it acts like a magnet that keeps us on track as we head off into a complicated world in search of solutions.
It doesn’t really matter who you are, the only question that matters is – “who are you becoming?”, once you know this you have a much better chance of getting there.
There is no ‘answer’ out there that someone can hand you and say…here…go and get it, if someone pretends there is – they are wrong.
And if someone tells you butter is bad …they are also wrong!