Truth is not information that reflects whatever our idea of objective reality is at the time. Truth is a state in which you are capable of working with new unexpected events in a way that makes them improve things. It's the level of professionalism that allows you to take a playful approach to life itself. Expertise and awareness, first-hand experience in how things work allowing to work with them in a state of flow. In that sense, aiming for an ideal is an ideal in and of itself.
Skill to adapt to black swans before you even learn about them is developed naturally by itself, during the process of faithfully accepting the challenges in the sphere you're interested in. Personal interest is the only motivator that can overcome intentional dissuasion and all kinds of natural hardships.
Several scientists independently making the same discovery at the same time is an example of that skill. The main requirement for developing it is the will not to cheat in what you're doing. Cheating can be defined as limiting your awareness about a situation with information that benefits you. A common example of cheating is when you decide to procrastinate instead of processing important information you're aware of.
Now, cheating is still an unavoidable desire, because people are limited and they can't do everything they want. But to be a professional, you need to be able to resist that desire even if it refuses to go away up until you complete the task properly. And then again.
When you refuse to cheat, you refuse to remain in your ignorant comfort zone, you reject egoism and narcissism. If you can resist being selfish whenever it's not good for the task, reality also opens up towards you from its good sides, playing with you in return.
But what if people refuse to not cheat? What if they decide to abuse the system in their selfish favor? Then social life turns into an endless war between endless groups of ignorames. Society grows so out of touch that it can't distinguish a pathological liar from a competent person and it starts believing in that liar as a magically wise leader. All sides start telling each other what they want to hear instead of being honest, and they mutually lose sense of reality, effectively driving each other insane. The state of flow is replaced with ecstatic delusion. Expertise is replaced with passion. As a result, catastrophic events become frequent and unavoidable. A totalitarian society fails to realize itself as totalitarian until it's too late. So this is not a joke.
Spotting dangerous trends in yourself is very hard, because it's impossible to predict what they evolve into on the big scale, and without that scale it barely manifests itself. The emergence principle is also there.
You'll need to start noticing what most people don't want to notice. You'll need to be aware of what holds your attention at a given time, and to clean that attention from garbage, periodically:
Repeating this cycle until there's nothing that you're focusing on will teach you to ignore the direct experience. Now that itself may sound alarming, but it's a helpful skill as long as you don't use it for cheating. Direct experience is where our habits and hallucinations dwell, so by putting them aside you reach the state of purity. And purity shows you which things need your active attention right now!
Purity allows us to start looking for the unknown unknowns among things we don't fully realize we know. Purity shows us that ignorance is not a natural state. Ignorance leads to a whole bunch of problems without us even knowing we contribute to them. In some cases ignorance contributes to a crime, and it only took a tiny bit of laziness not to ponder how that happened. Lack of information is not our proof of innocence, it's how problems persist!
So truth is not information that represents objective reality. In fact, you may be very unhappy that someone told you the truth about the plot of the movie you're currently watching. Truth is apt information, one that improves things. And purity of attention is how we can find this information.
Total lack of important knowledge is a hallucination. If we keep watching it, we're agreeing to not use the less obvious knowledge, to not look for it. And if our ignorance contributes to some crime, we won't know about it, so we won't help to stop it. Attention controls us, so we want to control our attention back.
When aiming for maximum sobriety and realism, any kind of fantasy can be safely considered a red herring hallucination. Truth is a soft skill exactly because it means ability to reject all fantasies anytime you want it, and to get real. And if you can't do that, whoever can please your fantasies is able to bribe you.

Staff/SoftSkills/Truth last edited by feos on 11/16/2022 6:48 PM
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