1995-05-19-Graciousness & Truth
- 1 Heading
- 2 Facilitators
- 3 Session
Topic: Graciousness & Truth
Group: Pocatello TeaM
Daniel(TR #3): "Hello my friends; I am Daniel, your teacher, guide, friend and companion. As is often true, Tomas and I are most joyful as we have observed and listened to your sharing tonight. Many have been the occasions of heartfelt interchange in the past and we are pleased to see that this camaraderie and display of affection continues to grow in all of you. Much of what you have discussed, nay, all of what you have discussed has great value in that it has been your reaction to the experiences of your life, honestly appraised and given in an unconditional manner to your Indwelling Spirit; and so have you taken back your hands from the reins of your own life in greater measure.
In particular I would commend the attempts that many of you have made to wear the badge of graciousness, to ponder its personal meanings for each of you. Your efforts to present yourself in truth to others have been models of graciousness after all, even though one of you spoke of feeling other than that understood emotion termed 'graciousness'.
I have said this in the past but I will reiterate. It is not gracious to hide the truth. It is not gracious to gloss over that which needs to be dealt with under the facade of being 'nice'. It is the truth that will make us free and not the tawdry imitation of it. So I wish to commend you all on your dutiful efforts as my students and Tomas' students, for once again you have risen to the challenge of taking these teachings seriously.
The topic for our evening's discussion grows out of this thread of content which has been progressing in the last few weeks, starting with forgiveness and now moving on. Tonight I wish to develop further the concept of the relationship of graciousness and truth as I have already introduced it.
Remember when you were children and were advised that there were certain delicate situations that required the practice of the term 'white lies', glossing over truth to spare the feelings of others? Isaac remembers confusion as to what appeared to be, as a child, a double standard. This tension between graciousness and truth remains a problem, a concern for all peoples and not merely a puzzle for little ones, for this dilemma, the question of how much truth is the right amount, is generic to and inherent in its expression in graciousness.
Your text tells you that overmuch truth can be blinding light which causes retinal damage and causes the receiver to recoil in pain. Obviously, then, it is not gracious to present more truth in a situation to an individual than they are capable of comprehending. This is why our Master said, 'Be wise as serpents and harmless as doves'. He was referring to this very tension between truth and graciousness. But, it could be said, is there a simple formula, an easy answer to this perplexing age long dilemma? And, of course, my reply is (and I am sure you all know) no, there is no simple answer. There is no panacea, as it were. It is much more complex.
I would first like to comment on the value of truth and its importance as compared to a disdain or disregard for truth which has been held in various degrees since the master deceiver himself began his campaign of lies. It is the intention to be truthful that is primary. Again, your text talks about this. It is not so much having the total amassing of facts and their relationships as it is to intend to speak that which is truth. And so the heart of the matter, which I am sure is no surprise, is that this is an attitude of the soul born from the true dedication of one's will to the doing of the will of our First Source and Center. With this intention to be truthful one's truth, then, is safeguarded, not wholly against error, for you and I are imperfect, but against sin and iniquity. So we must begin first with this matter of intention.
Having settled the issue of truthful intention the question, then, focuses on determining the capacity of one's listener to be truth receptive. This is, in fact, a very difficult job. It requires the skills of graciousness in allowing that other person their due, their true status as brothers and sisters, as children of our common God, our common Father and Mother. It requires a letting go of self importance to hear, to allow the other person to be heard as clearly as you are capable of. And then, while it is impossible to walk in the shoes of another, to try to practice that empathy as much as possible.
But, finally, it is not your responsibility to control this process. You turn over to the First Source and Center to guide you, to give you those words that will moderate your robust enthusiasm on occasion or your misperception by erring on the low side so that your presentation will flow with the smoothness of oil. When our Master reminded his apostles not to worry about speaking in front of government officials they followed His advice and spoke eloquently. This is an illustration of what I am trying to explain.
I am aware that you all understand this considerably. Please understand that I am not talking down to you but I hope that these brief words will provide you with more meat to chew on and help lighten your load as you deal with this difficult task of presenting truth graciously. Tomas is eagerly waiting to add to my commentary and I now take myself from center stage and present to you my brother and your teacher, Tomas."
Tomas:(TR #2) "Good evening ladies and gentlemen. How gracious your ears have been this evening to your teacher's words, and rightly so for Daniel has presented mota for mastication. I am, as always, eager to speak words, to greet you, to bring us into contact once again but I am not adding to this replete subject. Rather I am going to call your attention to parables such as our teacher, Michael, used when he taught His flocks.
Parables are sometimes a way of speaking truth without offending individuals. Parables are gracious. They are easily absorbed by simple thinking mortals. All children love tales with a moral, with a message. The colorful tale of intrigue and drama is the stuff of your mortal existence's entertainment.
Not all individuals are well suited for presenting parables, but it is not an impossible task to develop. The Master was genuine in His taking children to His side. His capacities were such that He could truly see the childlike aspects of all who He drew near to. In presenting your truth if you are able to breathe in that understanding which Michael had and utilized when He dealt with Urantians you might begin to see them as tenderhearted babes who have been lost, confused, angry and alone and who seek in their innermost being the warmth, radiance, lightness, joy, harmony, and love which your Indwelling God Fragment is capable of reflecting to these individuals, your supposed and sometime protagonists.
I ask you to think back to the early days of the Teaching Mission when the troops gathered together to acknowledge their commitment to carrying on with apostolic zeal the work that must be done with willing and joyful hearts. Think back to those days of surrender to harmony and love, to the acknowledgement made public among yourselves of your living faith. The gift of being a child of God is not to be taken lightly or set aside.
The work involved in bringing forth truth is noble work, work which can hardly be avoided as you accept your assignment and garner your own growth. Surely the Supreme reflects the depth of reality which you contribute by these lessons on the understanding of the emotionally based creature of humanity in order to bring forth understanding and truth of a higher nature. We are open to questions."
PamElla: "I very much appreciate the topic tonight and the response in the opening, Daniel, to my statements about not feeling that I had handled things very graciously. That was a very concise and helpful response. I do have a question that came from the opening and not from the lesson. And now I don't even remember the context. But, Daniel, you spoke about giving, something about the reins. I was not sure if you were saying to give over the reins to God or if you were saying to take control of one's own life, although I suppose, of course, in giving over the reins to God one does take control of one's own life. But there was a statement that you made there at the beginning that left me feeling somewhat confused. I was wondering if I could have clarification, please?"
Daniel: "Thank you Nancy for bringing this up as Isaac struggled to convey my meaning and saw the reins in his mind and was himself somewhat unclear in presentation. The metaphor was intended to illustrate a phrase that I speak often of, 'turning over', turning over control of one's own life from a self centered and egoistic stance. And as you have just stated, yes, this turning over to the Father, to the First Source and Center results in greater self control, paradoxical though it sounds, nevertheless it is true. That was my intended meaning. Is that clear?"
PamElla: "Yes, Daniel, it is. Thank you."
Daniel: "So I guess you have said it every bit as well as I have, my daughter."
PamElla: "Thank you."
Leetah: "I will just make a comment on something I have thought about the last two or three weeks, and have actually voiced a couple of times. And I am trying to remember what the context was. Your reference to facts not being truth is in the text. So many times when we see something happening, that is a fact, but the truth of why and what is behind the intention of the action is far more truthful than the fact of the action we see."
Daniel: "Yes, Virginia, your words are well spoken and reflect my intention in my comments about one's attitude toward truth. It is a fact of experience, of all experience short of Paradise, that one cannot fully know another's orientation/perception, although that knowledge improves dramatically over your current limitations as mortals as you progress. The Truth, of course, is greater than any time/space creature can comprehend in total. Only the Gods know the Truth in its entirety. We have spoken of this before. Truth is relative and grows with experience, with truthful intention, with a desire to be in a truthful relation with the Giver of all Truth, the great First Source and Center. Thank you for your commentary."
Leetah: "Thank you Daniel. I am looking forward to that time when we really are part of the Supreme. I think of the Bible verse that says 'we will know as we are known'. A wonderful promise. Thank you."
Daniel: "I agree!"
PamElla: "Daniel, I have another comment and that is when you were talking about the tension between truth and graciousness and talking about first we need to have truthful intention and then second we needed to evaluate the truth capacity of those that we were speaking with a little alarm went off in my head. I know, of course, that you didn't mean this and I understand, I think, what you were saying. But the alarm that went off inside is that this brings us into judgement. And if that evaluation of people's truth capacity is done from an ego state that can be really damaging because it leads to an elitist perspective where one decides that one is so good and so spiritual and this person just doesn't have the capacity. I, of course, know that this is not what you were saying. But since you invited commentary in addition to questions I guess the comment that I would make is that I think we all have to be careful to remain in alignment and in our intention not only of being truthful but being within God's will and not judging another; evaluating the facts but still remain loving and gracious toward the individual in our evaluation."
Daniel: "Isaac is feeling like saying, 'you should have given the lesson!(laughing). But I am speaking now, I, Daniel, and yes, exactly correct. It was not my intention to encourage egoistic judgment but that idea of assessment, that knowledge, limited though it be and fraught with a certain amount of danger, as you have pointed out. That is why I emphasized the need to follow guidance and allow one's Thought Adjuster to actually inspire speech and thinking. And, of course, remember always that there is no elitism in the Kingdom of God. There is no favoritism. The First Source and Center loves each of us with incredibly infinite love, recognizes our uniqueness, does not place us in any hierarchy of importance or value! We are all valuable beyond our fondest ideas to Him, to Her.
I am wanting to express also that to show another truth is not, obviously, a matter of words only, although at times words are involved, but an attitude, that gracious acceptance of equality, that gospel/good news that we are, indeed, all children of one incredibly loving God and therefor brothers and sisters. I know you are well read in the book and you know this is the gospel that Jesus taught and the gospel this world needs to hear. So when you present your truth you do not do it from any elitist motivation. You share the common banquet of the Kingdom of Heaven with hungry brothers and sisters. Again, thank you for your comments."
PamElla: "Thank you, Daniel. That was helpful. I had one other thought that has come and gone and I think it has returned, and that is when you were talking about intention I somehow got involved in assessing other people's intention I guess probably from the situation that I have been involved with that I shared earlier. I have judged that individual as being sneaky, covert, passive/aggressive, and a number of other statements that suggest to me that this individual's desire is to cover up truth and not deal truthfully. And I have some confusion in that it is not my place to judge but I also know about this individual that this individual, I believe, does want to be in alignment with God's will and has been on a truth seeking path even though I see this individual as being very codependent, having all of those traits that I just mentioned that are the opposite of truth revealing. And I don't know that I have a question, per se, except that perhaps I am confused about recognizing that person's desire to be in alignment with God's will and recognizing that person's covering of truth and hiding. If you have a comment that would help me in that confusion, I would appreciate it."
Daniel: "Yes, my daughter. My response is that you are wise to catch yourself in the act of the tension I have been describing and examine your own motivation. Are you, in fact, wanting to be in a role of judgment? Or are you intending to present truth? There is..(and only you can answer this)..there is a danger in assuming that we know more about another person's motivation than is, in fact, true. And this is true for beings higher than mortals. And so there needs to be that democracy of spirit, that generosity of giving to the other, when there is a choice, the best of motives; and when there isn't a choice, withholding judgment about motivation.
You see, there is a lot of...what is your phrase?...amateur psychoanalysis being practiced upon this planet as a result of the discoveries and fruit of the study of human nature which has been done by many professions. I do not make these remarks in the critical mode for this improved self-understanding has its great value. But there is also a danger of assuming you know more about a person than is the case. Do you understand my direction of thought here?"
PamElla: "Yes, Daniel I do."
PamElla: "Thank you. It's not really what I want...well it is sort of what I want to do...part of me really wants to get him!!(chuckling and laughing). I know that your counsel is sound and is definitely the best path and I will go that direction to the best of my capacity."
Daniel: "You are a most gracious listener."
Luke: "Hello, Daniel, Tomas, it's Luke here. You probably notice because of the accent(laughing); you hardly can miss it! The last comment that PamElla had there. I am real glad that PamElla is PamElla and PamElla is not me! Because I would take that guy by the horn and throw him all over the place!(group laughter) Because what she has said, I would not put up with that. It is just something that is very, very frustrating when you are in a situation like that. You just have to step back and size the thing up. Just look at how many hours one has to spend just to sit there! I thought I would just comment about it. Thank you."
Luke: "No, no I wouldn't shoot the guy, no.(Outrageous laughter) But I would go ahead and if I had to do a paper I would not ask for his sanction. I would just publish it and make a comment on it that he was too busy to get his two cents in it. That's what I would do! Maybe a little bit of controversy if I put myself on the line, but you get action one way or the other. Thank you."
Daniel: "I am prompted to remark that here we see a clear illustration of the difference between the sexes, at least in some regard, and I would venture that your more aggressive approach might produce different results with this man, but I am speculating also. Each of you has to do what you feel is your guidance using your minds and your guidance."
Tomas: "I am inclined to interject a phrase, 'hidden agenda'. First I remind you of the picture in your text of the savage with his club raised high who in truth is defending the noble and valuable family cowering in the background from the aggressions of a sabertoothed tiger.(100:4.5) This picture is often times the image of what we have been discussing, what is true versus what is truth, and how do we confront this relative reality. Hidden agendas or hidden motives and, indeed, secrets are often times the albatross that complicates free and open communication. If you sense that a situation is unclear and you, yourself, have placed your cards on the table but your peer/protagonist is a bit of a card shark, how can you care about his intentions when you're not holding an ace up your sleeve as he is?
How necessary is it that you engage yourself in warfare for the truth of the issue or of the moment? Assuredly if you are prepared to battle it to the bitter end perhaps your own hidden agenda is to assuage your own intentions. The phrase 'inventory' comes to the mind of my TR and much of the amateur psychoanalysis Daniel refers to is a matter of individuals taking the inventories of other individuals without determining that they are also in a situation to see the reflection of their own foibles of personality. Indeed, humanity is essential for success in breaking down barriers of communication to determine if all the cards are on the table, that there is nothing hidden. Yet the wise player will be aware that many times things are hidden even from oneself. Therefor mercy is also called into context. That is all."
Daniel: "A final note in this discussion of truth and graciousness is the practice of our Creator Son as a mortal where he employed the Paradise principle of displacing error not by combat with truth but by the effect of a healthy plant that grows and chokes out the weeds in its vicinity. And so did He plant truth in this efficacious manner.
I am aware that we are not Christ Michael but we are admonished and we are taught(and this process continues on in the morontial life as well)to use this technique rather than the ego enhancing or bruising technique of debate. Again there seems to be some tension here between presenting the truth in a gracious manner without engaging in egoistic debate and I conclude my remarks with this statement. Each of you in your innermost silence need to discuss this with your own Indwelling Spirit. Actually teachers like myself and Tomas cannot and should not tell you exactly how to do things because of your own free will choices and because we, however `higher' than you (as you see us), are not inside your skin. Are there further questions at this time? Further discussion?"
Aren: "Daniel, I just have a couple of comments concerning amateur psychoanalysts and Tomas' comment about another individual taking somebody else's inventory. Over the last four or five months I have slowly started to get OK with the fact that I am frequently wrong. And having to admit that and accept that I am frequently wrong has been some internal growth..and to accept that the world is frequently wrong and the personalities I allow into my life. I have found when speaking truthfully to another individual to go really slowly with that personality. I could get too `into it'. I want to know this person and what makes them tick, makes them work. And if any personality is like my personality they can be quite toxic(chuckling) and I have enough of that stuff of my own to deal with. And that is all I wanted to basically comment on, is to go slow with the personalities. Thanks."
Daniel: "Thank you for your comments, Aren. I would say that you have made great progress in your understanding of yourself and others. The ability to admit error is the highest form of sanity for it permits a person to change and grow. Denial of error is the opposite and taken to its extreme results in cosmic insanity. So my compliments, my friend.
In regard to your other comments about the desire to know others I would remind you or tell you that our Master delighted in every individual human being that He met, even children. He saw them as precious, precious children of Himself, but also His Father in Heaven, for each of them and each of all of you, all mortals and all personalities, are endowed with that unique gift of personality. That is why you have this desire to know. Personality desires to know another personality. It is a strong attraction, greater by far than mere physical or mindal attraction. As long as this desire to know another does not become nosy or controlling and some other things, it remains a healthy endeavor. Think about your own experience. Someone who is interested in you, who wants to know about you, creates good feelings, not bad ones, unless they are being nosy, of course. Do you understand my point?"
PamElla: "I want to return to Tomas' statement about hidden agendas and also I lost the link, but it very much tied into Daniel what you just said to Aren, the first part of it. Boy it's blown right out of my mind at the moment. So maybe I can follow up Tomas on what you were saying about hidden agendas. Your parable struck home very much in terms of the feeling that I have and the situation that I have. And also your comment on the need to fight to the bitter end for truth also struck home.
And what hidden agenda might I have that doing that is so important to me? Because as I evaluate it not only is it in the particular situation but it is a theme in my whole life. I really don't like denial and I become quite obsessed with rooting it out, wanting to debate and wanting to force people to admit the truth of a situation that I know to be truth!! It is maybe my biggest frustration and maybe one of my biggest disappointments is that people are not readily willing . ..yeah, it does tie in...to admit their errors!! And I want that so badly and I will do this debating stuff.
It seems like if one applies rationality and facts it ought to be so obvious! It is clear to everybody else who is observing! And I cannot figure out why it isn't clear to the individual! This is just a long time theme for me. Obviously those things have struck home and I need to do a lot of meditating and praying and self exploration as to why this is important, and also what to do about it! There is that balance between truth and graciousness and obviously debating doesn't work. But sometimes I hope that when I just express my feelings that this will have an effect. But often it doesn't. I can express myself and be very honest simply coming from the place of wanting to be in touch with my feelings and be truthful and then I am disappointed when that doesn't change situations because I have an expectation that when I become very honest that it is supposed to! And then I get upset that the situation didn't change. And then I get to wanting to ferret out the truth and the debate stuff. I have gone on rather long here and I don't know what response there is for you to make, but if you have any response I would, of course, appreciate it."
Tomas: "It would take a bit of time to respond to all that you propose in your outpouring. I will, however, say two things. One is that your intensity is unusual and that you might be rather odd to your protagonist for you are so intense on one hand and so fragile on the other. This dichotomy is a parallel to those who have a facade of true and false reality which makes it difficult for you to see eye to eye.
I am not suggesting that this is a gender matter, no, for both genders are capable of acknowledging a wrongness and sincere apology or amends that the situation can become fluid again or further. I would suggest that you all as you go about your business this week make a point, if you will, of saying lightly, 'Oh, I was wrong, rather I meant..' just to accustom yourself and the world that you encounter that it is okay to make error. 'Oops!' is not so dreadful an acknowledgement. It is not a mortal sin. If one is able to be lighthearted about misunderstandings or potential error it will become easier for mankind to see that other people acknowledge error and they may begin to also acknowledge their own imperfections, albeit lightly. That is all."
Daniel: "I, Daniel, desire to add one brief comment to this question of yours, my dear, which things you will probably admit to understanding intellectually. You ask why denial is so hard to break out of. Your psychologists, psychiatrists, students of the mindal sphere have identified denial as what they term a defense mechanism. It is the perception of painful, unpleasant, guilt producing, shame causing reality that so frightens you mortals that you resort to this obstinate intellectual/emotional fortress of denial. It is at root a desire to avoid guilt, shame, pain, etc.
That is why truth must be presented graciously. Hammering another's defenses of denial only frightens that person more, for they feel that the wall will crack and they will be exposed. Even the Thought Adjuster does not force Itself upon free will mortals. Our Indwelling Spirit's task is every bit as difficult to try to persuade their host to break out of the illusions of denial. And as Aren has said that he is becoming more comfortable with being wrong I tell you all, all who are present in this room and who read these transcripts, get used to it!
There are worse things than being wrong. The worst thing, of course, is not to admit it. And now my friends, we have gone on at great length. It has been my personal pleasure as your teacher to have this spirited and important discussion.
This will surprise you. My assignment is to lighten up, to not become overly introspective this week, but take a vacation from topics that have caused you some grief. Observe the flowers blooming. Enjoy the sun shining. See nature in her springtime robes, resplendent in glory, beautiful, to reflect the joy of her Creators, our Father and Mother, Christ Michael and Nebadonia of Nebadon, to Whom be glory and honor along with the Paradise Trinity, forever and ever. My love with you all. Farewell."