All learning changes you. The old dies a little death. A new, truer self steps to the fore.

3 “A’s” and The Essence of Wisdom; or, The Truth About Chairs

The essence of wisdom, accept, adopt, act on truth
Photo by Tim Umphreys on Unsplash

# 77 on my 99 Life Tips–A List is: When you discover Truth, accept it, adopt it, and act on it. This is the essence of wisdom.

In a previous story, I’ve written about using your intelligence to pursue truth.

But what will you do if you catch it?

Will you be like the chihuahua who chases the bus down the street?

I mean, what would it do if it ever caught the bus?

But you’re no chihuahua, when you discover truth, you will:

Accept

Truth is floating all around you right now. It is everywhere. It permeates creation and saturates reality. The existence of lies has no more impact on the existence of truth than darkness does on light.

But truth will not dispel darkness unless you accept it as truth.

Remarkably, the mind is so made up that acceptance of truth as true flips a switch that settles the question. It will remain so until it discovers fresh evidence, more true.

Acceptance of what is true also implies acceptance of what is false. Sometimes, this is difficult. Pet beliefs may fall by the wayside. Dogmas may crumble. Sparkling fantastical claims lose their luster, dull, and drop away. 

Admittedly, this can be painful. All learning changes you. The old dies a little death. A new, truer self steps to the fore. This is nothing to be afraid of, but one must remain vigilantly prepared, because this happens when you discover new truth and accept it.

Adopt

The next step is adoption. Truth accepted is not enough to elicit the full benefit. Make the truth your own. Make it your truth. Do so knowing that you are malleable and open to the possibility that new, more full, more complete truth may appear. 

But for the time being, think of the difference between acceptance and adoption as that between one who acknowledges the existence of a child and one who assumes responsibility for the child to raise as their own. 

Act

In my wanderings I may see a chair. My senses encourage me to accept that it is indeed a chair, and in fact, a very good one. Pleased with my discovery, I take it home, adopting it as mine. 

The proof of whether my acceptance and adoption of the chair has any depth is whether I sit on it. Do I use it for the end to which it was designed and for which I accepted it, adopted it and carted it home?

Regarding practical value, truth unenacted is no better than a lie. Just as an unused chair may become merely an object upon which to bang one’s toe in the night. 

The Takeaway… There is no 4th “A”

A person is wise in proportion to the truth accepted, adopted, and acted upon in their life. Notice there is no 4th “A” for accumulation. Truths catalogued and shelved, but not accepted, adopted, nor acted upon do not make one wise; They make one guilty. 

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