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Friday, January 3, 2014

231: DECEPTION: THE ENEMY OF TRUTH

 
I have been impressed to write about the enemy of truth.. not error, but deception. Deception is the act of making someone believe something that is not true. We can willing deceive someone with the intent to mislead, and/or we can unknowingly deceive someone when we teach falsehoods.  We read in Revelation 12:9 that Satan deceiveth the whole world. Satan was cast out into the earth to deceive, and he is here along with his angels.  We live in a war between truth and deception and the battle is ratcheting up.

Satan has many tools that he uses, and to illustrate his subtle craft, I wanted to share an analogy using the painting of Mona Lisa.  The Mona Lisa painted by Leonardo da Vinci has been acclaimed as "the best known, the most visited, the most written about painting in the world".  I use this painting to symbolically represent Truth. Truth originates from the Creator.  It is the knowledge of things as they are, and as they were, and as they are to come.  It existed from the beginning and does not change.  Satan tries to copy and imitate the truth, but through men, he manipulates and alters Gods' truth.


 ORIGINAL
 
 

Just like in Photoshop, there are 6 basic ways to transform and manipulate an original photograph. These techniques are scaling, spinning (rotating), skewing, distorting, perspective and warping.
 
 TOOLS TO "TRANSFORM" THE ORIGINAL
 


SCALING:

Scaling is a transformation that enlarges or diminishes an image. I compare this to myopic vision. It happens when we look or "scale up" too closely at one particular area. We all have a tendency to zoom up and focus too closely on subjects that interest us. Like a piano player who likes a particular sound, he will play that note over and over again, instead of playing the entire song.  We have all heard the phrase, "you can't see the forest for the trees." which means we pay too much attention on certain areas and we lose the big picture.

SPINNING (Rotating):

Spinning or Rotating is to turn the original from it's axis or center. What used to be correctly orientated is now off even by a small degree. When it's position is off, it is now considered crooked. We use the term "spin" in the media when we alter the truth. This is achieved through providing an interpretation of an event or campaign to persuade public opinion in favor or against a certain organization or public figure. It is a deception that is widely used in all institutions including religious organizations.

SKEWING:

To skew is to turn or place at an angle. It is different than rotating in that the image stays "upright" but diverges in a different direction. The image now looks slanted. Skewed is often used as a synonym of truth that has been misinterpreted.

DISTORTING:

To distort means to change the natural, normal, or original shape, or appearance  in a way that is usually not attractive or pleasing. It has become twisted out of the true meaning. It has become unnatural.

PERSPECTIVE MANIPULATION:

Perspective manipulation is another way of distorting an image. Perspective can change our opinion on things when we view things out of context and from an angle which might not be accurate. It is important that we see things accurately in respect to their true positions and proper proportions and distance.

WARPING:

Warping means to alter the original by arranging things in an unfavorably manner. It is in a state of being bent out of shape and has lost its true and correct form.

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I mention these things because so much of what we read and listen to has been altered in one way or the other...even from those we consider to be reliable sources. We are being deceived every day in some form or another. If there was ever a spiritual gift that we need to pray for would be discernment. One who has discernment possesses wisdom. They also have good judgement, especially with regard to things overlooked and/or not seen by others.


I am learning recently that in places where we least expect it,  there is much lying, deceiving, whoredoms, and even murdering intentions that abound. As Moroni states in one his final chapters, "it shall come in a day when there shall be great pollutions upon the face of the earth; there shall be murders, and robbing, and lying, and deceivings, and whoredoms, and all manner of abominations."

May heaven help us to discern truth from error.
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