Discerning Truth from Error
This article gives principles for discerning the truth value of something and recognizing error. This is necessary, no matter where the information comes from, or who says it.
Key questions in discerning truth are:
- Does it make sense?
- Does it resonate at the soul level?
- Is it experientially true?
What is Discernment?
Discernment is simply the ability to decide between truth and error, right and wrong, wise and unwise choices. Other synonyms or action words in discernment are to examine, distinguish, discriminate, judge.
Discernment is needed in every aspect of our lives – from minute-to-minute choices which include matters of health and lifestyle, thoughts, words and actions, to short-term and longer-ranging decisions, as well as in accepting or rejecting as truth what we hear or read. Discerning right from wrong thoughts, words and actions is important because lack of or incorrect discernment and the resulting unwise choices will lead to unpleasant consequences for ourselves and others – either sooner or later in this life and/or thereafter.
The Bible gives some instruction on discernment:
1 Thessalonians 5:21-22 exhorts us in a general way: “Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil.”
1 Corinthians 14:29 instructs us to discern what is spoken: “Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said.”
1 John 4:1 gives a warning that not every spirit is believable: “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” We learn elsewhere that true spirits should “acknowledge that Jesus is the best beloved son of God, and brought to the knowledge of mankind the rebestowal of the Divine Love, and declared to men the way in which that Love may be obtained.” These are the spirits that can teach us spiritual truths.
Principles of Discerning Truth
In listening to any medium claiming to receive a message from any spirit, Jesus emphatically counsels, echoing the biblical counsel mentioned above: “always test the truth that comes. If you are not satisfied within your hearts or through some demonstration of this truth in your experience, then do not give credence to what is spoken, … If there is doubt, release your hold upon this information and ask for guidance and confirmation of its veracity.
“Mortals are prone to not take responsibility for their acceptance and absorption of the truth. They prefer to put the onus upon the messenger rather than the capacity of the soul through the spirit of truth that is within each soul to comprehend and accept what has been conveyed. … When you doubt something that has been spoken to you and you yearn to know its truth or error, bring it to God. Ask for confirmation, for a sign, for the signal from that place in your soul that knows truth. When you have confirmed and have conferred truth within your mind, let it sink to your soul. Embrace this truth and live by this truth. Do not allow another to convince you otherwise.
“It is your journey to know truth, to truly know, to embrace, and to allow truth to be in every part of you. In your actions and thoughts, in your soul, in all of you, may truth reside and be an expression of who you are, your beautiful being that God has created and has a deep desire that you know of His presence, His Being, and His creation. …
Truth will come in golden drops, freeing you from error, bringing you to a place of strength and clarity, of a knowing that is deep and abides within your soul. Thus God in His Love desires to bring all humanity to that place of purity, light and truth where Love reigns supreme … Go to God, beloveds, for your truth. Words are but words but what they convey may inspire an awakening within your soul of truth which will bring joy and freedom and upliftment.”
Growing in Truth
The above message also tells us that the pursuit of truth in all areas of life will result in spiritual growth and blessings. “You yearn for truth. You seek it in your prayers. You seek it in your thoughts. You seek it in expressions of your life. … Truth grows as your souls grows in Love, [as] you walk in Light, … [and] shed all that is of darkness. As you awaken in this beautiful blessing of Love, so truth will grow within you. Your gifts will blossom and bring forth much fruit that may be used to nourish your brothers and sisters upon their journey of love.”
We learn more about growing in truth in this message: “What is sacred is your belief and connection, your rapport with your Heavenly Father. … Receiving His Love, His essence, within your soul, will bring the truth, which will emerge from your souls, and find lodgement within your minds. It will incrementally develop and unfold and evolve, so that a true and complete understanding will come to you through your soul’s perceptions and your mind’s efforts to accept these truths as God gives them to you, through His Love, and through His communication to you.
“Truth is not altogether absolute. It is perceived by each individual soul, and although the foundation of truth can be universal, the perception of truth is not necessarily so. … You must encourage each soul to find this truth through their own efforts and perceptions and prayers, and though their truth, their understanding, their perspective may be slightly different from yours, it is no less valid.”
Sharing Truth with Others
The above message counsels: “To express your truth to others and to bring a suggestion of truth in the written word, for that is merely all that it is, is a productive action. So indeed, each human … is compelled to share their truth with others and this must be honored.
“For you do not know the Absolute Truth, my beloveds. You have your own personal version and understanding … You must see that this is all relevant or relative to the experience of each individual and you must have compassion even for those who believe in error, for they earnestly wish and desire to seek truth. And though they have been shown a false path, and possibly will walk a circuitous route to truth, they will come to God in time, and you must not put roadblocks to that journey. Give what you can of your own heartfelt understanding of truth. Do not confront others and say, ‘you are wrong’. No, my beloveds, you must merely live your truth and speak your truth in loving ways. Share what you know and remember that these are just words.
“The real truth lies within your soul and the light that you carry and that channel of Love which God is building within you. This speaks truth, beloveds, more powerfully than anything else. To be that channel of God’s Love and to embrace all of those you meet and to allow in gracious ways for them to express themselves, without you stepping in to correct what you believe is untruth, is doing God’s bidding.
“… There may come at the odd time an opportunity to [correct someone’s erroneous beliefs] where that soul is open to what you have to say. But most often these precious souls who mean well are not open to your truth. Do not judge, but be humble and kind and wish them well with a prayer, for there will come a time for each seeking soul, that they may come to the truth, … and all of the falsity will fall away. It is mere understandings of the mind, and the mind changes its perspective and understandings so very often. And you must accept that each soul has their path to follow, their route to take to God.”
To sum up, here are a few points regarding the nature of truth, how to discern our own truth, and how to share truth.
We are encouraged to always test the truth, no matter its source. Each person should take the responsibility for their own discernment and acceptance of truth. To test any spiritual information, bring it to God. Ask for confirmation, such as a sign or signal from without or within. Others may also help us confirm and validate truth.
When you have confirmed truth within your mind, let it sink into your soul. Embrace this truth and live by it. These points are further expanded on in this message from John.
Truth is not altogether absolute. Rather, it is perceived slightly differently by each individual soul, as they search for it on their journey. All the perspectives arrived at by seekers’ own efforts, prayers, perceptions and understanding are equally valid. The truth residing in each person’s soul, thoughts and actions is an expression of who they are.
Coming to know truth is a gradual process of revelation, transformation and being freed from error. As we grow in God’s Love, more and more truth will emerge from our souls and lodge in our minds. A God-given understanding will come through the soul’s perceptions and the mind’s efforts to accept these truths.
As we come to see truth, there is an honorable desire to share it with others. This should be done with compassion for those who believe error, for they are sincere in their beliefs and their search for truth. Rather than being confrontational, share your heartfelt understanding in loving ways. The most important is living the truth, which is powerfully communicated through the light we carry and the channel of Love that God is building within us.
Most of the sincere people we encounter are not open to our truth. Do not judge them, but be humble and kind. We know that there will come a time for each seeking soul, when they will learn the truth of Jesus’ mission of Love, and all the falsity will fall away. Accept that each soul has their own route to take to God, and eventually, they will all reach a place of happiness either in the sphere of the Perfect Man or in the Celestial Kingdom.
More on the subject of Discerning Truth is covered in this small book.
Header image: Nickolas Crawford from Unsplash.com