Verisimilitude - Truth and Credibility

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When I originally began this year-long writing project I had planned to focus on expanding my vocabulary by selecting a new, challenging, and interesting word each day and then composing an essay.
Sometimes I have done this, using terms such as lugubrious and quixotic, intriguing words in sound and in spelling.
I know these words in text but they rarely creep into my daily language and I thought it would be fun to do so.
At other times I have written about concepts such as magnanimity and motivation, taking the idea and then matching it to facets of my life and to the world as I view it.
In-between these two types of writing I have just written from my heart as I continued to gather words and concepts from reading, television, movies, and conversations.
As a result not only do I have a year's worth of writing titles, I probably am getting close to being able to complete two years on this project.
Verisimilitude is a word that I discovered in my reading of a book about reading and writing by Peter Mendelsund.
His fascinating publication guides the reader through how and why we read, how we interpret and apply, and how changing letters into words into ideas and concepts is an individual event.
While we may all be headed in the same direction in a book, we each take random routes along the way as we relate our experiences to the words being read and translate them into personal meaning.
Verisimilitude refers to truth and credibility.
It requires confronting our own being and authenticity as we decipher meaning in life and all of its aspects.
My beliefs are not yours just as yours are not mine, but in this world we should each be allowed to state and live by our own truth.
Verisimilitude reminds me of those outspoken individuals who believe that their way of viewing the world is the only one that is correct.
This is especially true in religion and politics.
There was a time that I attended church.
Although I must admit that even as a small child I added a touch of cynicism to my beliefs, I admired those fervent folks who could take in "the word" and scriptures and decide these to be the entire truth, with no wiggle room on the sides.
I saw lots of wiggle room, knowing even then that our perceptions and experiences shape and build us and since these are never the same, even within the same family, we are all different.
We have to be; we need to be.
It is the variety and spice of life.
One morning while listening to a Sunday school lesson I gasped as the teacher noted that everyone except the "Baptists" was going to hell.
This condemnation included babies to the elderly and all in-between.
Christian or Muslim, Hindu or Buddhist, there was no one in favor except our church membership.
That ended that bit of religious fervor as I marched out of the door and into a world of acceptance.
My verisimilitude had been tried and the plausibility of this single-religion-of-hope idea burned me from within as my face exemplified my anger for those there to witness my exit.
I needed to find and live my own truth to be authentic to myself and to those with whom I come into contact.
Verisimilitude is not simple.
There are many who disavow it or who do not believe in the individual rights of others.
While they may spout these rights as truths, they also limit them to their own definition.
This is why we have laws for things like speeding and why some feel they must impose laws when it comes to marriage.
If we all lived with good intent maybe no laws would be required.
But then, of course, we would have to define "good intent", making it no longer authentic but predetermined.
While narrow-minded focus may create a plausible explanation for life, it does not offer the openness and truth I seek.
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