Can you “know” the truth by reading a few words?
Often, truth cannot be reduced to words, its just something you feel deep down (Are we talking about feelings already? And you thought you were going to learn some legal stuff? Patience, Dear Reader).
For example, I truly knew my beloved youngest brother. And, I could write a book containing everything about him, all of our good times, his heart felt laughter, his date of birth. This book could describe every moment we shared, but those words on a page will not, ever, adequately describe who he was. What he meant to me. Words just don’t cut it.
Without getting too fuzzy here (too late?), the good news is that the truth can be conveyed without words. Maybe a kiss. Maybe just the touch of a hand (Yes, I stole that from a song). Think about spiritual practices, for example. Many people have experienced profound truths that cannot be reduced to symbols on a page. My pastor always says that you get things in church that you just don’t get anywhere else.
The same goes for music, it can deliver truth where mere words would fail. Have you ever heard a song a thousand times, only to have it jump out and reveal a truth you hadn’t heard before? My youngest brother, for example, was a big Grateful Dead fan. Yes, concerts and everything (that’s what I mean by a “big” Grateful Dead fan, he followed them around). I never got it. Then, a few years ago, “Scarlet Begonias” came on the radio. I’ve heard this song a thousand times. I like Sublime’s cover better (blasphemy?), but I’ve listened to this Dead song for, like, thirty years. The song came out in 1975. In 2016 the lyrics just jumped out at me. I got it. After all these years. Odd, right? Continue Reading