(OMTimes) The painting “The Truth Coming Out of Her Well” 1896 is a creation from the French artist, painter, and sculptor Jean-Léon Gérôme. He was considered one of the most relevant painters from this academic period, bringing the Academic painting tradition to an artistic climax.
Wisdom story: the truth coming out of her well
In a time of universal deceit – telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
~ George Orwell
Beginning in the mid-1890s, in the last decade of his life, Gérôme made at least four paintings personifying Truth as a nude woman, either thrown into, at the bottom of or emerging from a well. The imagery was inspired by an aphorism of the philosopher Democritus, “Of truth, we know nothing, for truth is in a well.”
Truth Coming Out of Her Well, Armed with Her Whip to Chastise Mankind was exhibited in the Salon du Champ de Mars of 1896. It has been assumed that the painting was a comment on the Dreyfus affair. Still, art historian Bernard Tillier argues that Gérôme’s images of Truth and the Well were part of his ongoing diatribe against Impressionism.
Gérôme himself invoked the metaphor of Truth and the Well in a preface he wrote for Émile Bayard’s Le Nu Esthétique, published in 1902, to characterize the profound and irreversible influence of photography. [Wikipedia]
It is said to be the portrait Imagery of a contemporary parable.
It was a beautiful day, and the Truth and the Lie met by coincidence, and the Lie complimented the Truth and said:
“What a wonderful day, isn’t today a gorgeous day?” asked the Lie.
The Truth looked around, took a big breath, look at the sky, and realized that it was the Truth; it was, in fact, a very gorgeous day. Without overthinking, the Truth agreed with Lie about the pleasurable day.
They started to walk about together, admiring the big clouds, and commenting on how the colors around Nature that were so pleasing and vivacious. They talked until they approached a well.
The Lie put her hand on the water, and told the Truth: “This water is marvelous; how about enjoy this day, even more, bathing together on this lovely day?”
The Truth was suspicious, but she tried the water herself, and in fact, she again realized that Lie was being honest. The pool was very inviting, and nothing seemed out of the ordinary.
The two “women” took off their clothes and entered the Well, enjoying the sunshine and the refreshing feeling of the clear cold water.
But suddenly, as Truth appreciated her bath, Lie sneaked out the Well and dressed herself in the Truth’s clothing and run away.
When Truth realized that Lie was no longer inside the Well with her, she got out of the well furious, and run after Lie to try getting her clothes back. And that she was, the poor Truth was running nude through the streets, opening space between the people that tried to avoid looking at her because the Truth was exposed. The Truth felt the eyes of recrimination, hatred, and shame.
No one is more hated than he who speaks the Truth.
After running everywhere looking for Lie dressed in her clothes, the Truth decided to return naked to the Well, where she intended to hide under its calm waters and disappear for Eternity.
Since then, it is sad that the Lie travels the world dresses with the clothing of Truth, satisfying the demands of our society because it realized that the world has no desire. No one is really interested in finding the Naked Truth.
There is nonetheless an alternative ending to this peculiar parable that goes like this…
When the Truth went back to the Well, she refused to dress in the Lie’s clothing. And because she didn’t have of what to be ashamed of, she now walks fearlessly and unapologetically through the streets of cities and villages.
That is why, ever since this time event, it is much easier to accept a Lie covered with clothes of the Truth than accept the bare-naked Truth.
About the author
Cathedral of the Soul intends to undertake the challenge of creating a multidimensional healing space that is dedicated to those who seek to enrich, enlighten and heal themselves while serving and assisting in the healing of others. Cathedral of the Soul is one of the many spiritual outreaches of Humanity Healing International, a registered 501C3 nonprofit with Church status. https://cathedralofthesoul.org
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