The Hidden Truth considers wide-ranging fields of study to develop a logical path through compelling evidence to discover the nature of reality and the meaning of life. The study begins with a review of the most scientific evidence and continues with increasingly esoteric, though still solid evidence. A skeptic himself, Wilson sought to present this overlapping, conclusive evidence in a logical flow so that fellow skeptics might reach the same conclusions as himself concerning the nature of reality and the meaning of life.
Before we get started with a discussion of the nature of reality, I think you deserve to know who I am, why I embarked on a study of the nature of reality that resulted in this book and what I hope you might be able to get out of it.
As an infant, I was baptized in the Catholic Church but to be honest, like many “Catholic” families I spent virtually no time at church as a child. My parents were burnt out on organized religion from their own childhood experiences and did not feel the need to impress upon us the same strict upbringing. My brothers, sister and I were raised to believe there was a God and Jesus was the Son of God who died for our sins. It sounded like a nice, feel-good story and I was curious enough in the matter that of my own volition I read and reread the Gospels and much of the rest of the bible before I began to think that something was wrong with the entire concept of organized religion. However, as a young child, one’s misgivings are not easily rectified with logic. Neither was there an easy way to seek alternative information for a broader understanding to answer my questions, so the matter was relegated to limbo for most of my childhood as I pondered.
One of my most vivid memories as a young child was walking outside and suddenly wondering, “What if life were but a dream?” What if there was a greater being out there and I was but a figment of his imagination? Now, that is an odd thing for a child to ponder!
It either sounds like fantasy or is so ridiculously deep in philosophical implications that assuredly such a thought was not dreamt up in the mind of a child. But it fostered in me a feeling of curiosity about life that stuck with me. I was certain my existence did not begin with life as a child, but I could not fathom from whence I came or why. As it would turn out, that farfetched childhood idea remained with me, in the back of my head, for more than two decades. As a child I was not ready to tackle this philosophical challenge, but as an educated adult I gained the tools to reconsider this problem and address it with a deliberated purpose that was both logic-based and analytical. That journey took a decade to complete as I gathered wide-ranging evidence across many diverse genres to support answers to the questions that haunt us all, and would eventually result in a personally acceptable answer, manifested in the form you see as this book.
Along my search for answers, I considered many other problems I had with organized Western religions. Of course the easiest conundrum was the one that vexes man almost daily: If God loves us, then why does he make us suffer with floods, Earthquakes, tornados and a plethora of other natural disasters? Alternately, if God is perfect, then why would he put us on a world where human conflict and competition leads us to commit war, rape, and pillage against our common brethren? The answer to these questions and many more, I’m happy to say, are in this book, since the typical answers provided by most preachers, Imams, Fathers, deacons, etc. in the world’s organized religions was simply not satisfactory to me.
Similarly, I wondered: Why are some people ridiculously rich or beautiful or famous while the vast majority is poor, hungry, or quite simply mundane? How is there justice in a world where slavery and famine still exist; or where murderers and thieves still lurk in the dark no matter how many are placed in overcrowded, inhumane jails? If a child lives but a few days, months or years, how can one say God loves us all equally when someone else lives past 100? And why must there be disease, cancer and accidents that result in death well before our time? Where is the fairness? The answers are in this book, and quite logically satisfying, unlike the so-called answers I heard from organized religion.
There have been many books written on the subject of, ‘What is the purpose of life?’ Unfortunately, many point to their own religion as containing the -- “one and only” -- answer, but again as I read the theories proposed in those books I knew deep down that the books were either partially or completely wrong. They were often mere feel-good books that had underlying motivations: their particular religion was the only answer so one should listen to that particular author, or face the wrath of a vengeful God at death if the message were ignored. I was troubled that it seemed odd how many preachers and sects of Christianity thought their particular interpretation of the Bible was the only one that was right, and must be followed implicitly in order to ‘thread the eye of the needle’ to enter Heaven. This is not to say that these self-help and religious books did not have many good points. Yes, it is important to love your neighbor as yourself and one should love God, but how can that be the summation of the whole purpose of creation? Surprise, it’s not! Again, organized religion does not hold a logically sound answer for the question concerning the purpose of life, but I’ll help you learn your own purpose herein.