“Shun ignorance, and likewise shun illusion. Avert thy face from world deceptions; mistrust thy senses, they are false. … Shun praise, O devotee. Praise leads to self-delusion. Thy body is not self, the SELF is in itself without a body, and either praise or blame affects it not. …
“False learning is rejected by the Wise, and scattered to the Winds by the good law. Its wheel revolves for all, the humble and the proud. … The wheel of the good law moves swiftly on. It grinds by night and day. The worthless husks it drives out from the golden grain, the refuse from the flour. The hand of Karma guides the wheel; the revolutions mark the beating of the Karmic heart. True knowledge is the flour, false learning is the husk.” ~H. P. Blavatsky

It is a sad state we live in today where so many people believe what they want to hear to be the truth, rather than seeking out what really is true. We hear politicians, news reporters, and pundits of all sorts saying things that they do not bother to back up with any facts, or back up only with some small bit of fact taken out of context, and it is blindly accepted by millions because it is what they want to hear. Even sadder, we see much of the same happening in churches and in spiritual groups and schools. Churches, in many cases, have become businesses who sell people what they want to hear rather than what is true. This may be acceptable for many people, and it at lease give them some structure, some rules to live by, even if distorted or totally false. This is not, however, an acceptable way to live if you are a spiritual seeker, a person seeking truth and enlightenment.

Seeking true while carrying a bag full of lies, false beliefs, and inaccurate limitations is like climbing a mountain with a heavy backpack on your shoulders, or rowing a boat with an anchor dragging on the river bottom. Sure, it can be done, but it is much easier to climb without that backpack.

I understand that it is easy to tell people to drop their false beliefs and limitations if they want to make progress, but not so easy to actually do. We all experience that problem. For most of us, the solution is, sticking with the backpack analogy, is to lighten the pack a little at a time while we climb the mountain. Every few steps, reach into that pack, pull out another falsehood, and throw it in the trash. This is the way we usually have to do it because we have to climb a certain distance up the mountain (gain a certain level of spiritual understanding) before we can recognize that this belief is a false one and can be discarded, and then another and another until the pack is empty and can also be dropped.

Blavatsky uses the metaphor of a grinding wheel that not only grinds the grain into flour, but separates the chaff of lies from the grain of truth. Then, it is hoped, we will choose to make spiritually nutritious bread from that flour of truth, rather than eating the sweet cookies of pleasant lies that rot our soul. As always, the choice is ours, so as the old knight told Indiana Jones, choose wisely (or die).


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