The use of the term True Nature infers the opposite: The existence of a False Nature. When we used this term our intention was not to create a dichotomy between true and false, rather to highlight that our true nature can be hidden behind our ego.
One of the central problems in Indian philosophy is what is ultimately real. This inquiry isn’t merely theoretical but intimately connected to how to live a better life. Reality in Indian philosophical discourse can be divided into conditional (maya), which is time-bound, and absolute (atman), which is timeless. The ego-based awareness is conditional and is based on the illusion of an independent “self-hood,” while the soul is absolute since it’s awareness extends beyond name and form to an underlying connection to all life.
Due to ignorance or forgetfulness (avidya) of underlying reality, we connect our identity within the narrow confines of the ego instead of the openness of the soul. So false nature is a divided self, cut adrift from creation, which doesn’t realize its connection to all existence. In contrast, the soul, atman, realizes the underlying connectedness. Conditional reality, maya, connects us to time-bound awareness, while absolute consciousness connects us to timeless consciousness.
So how can something be conditionally real? Well let’s look at an example that might prove illustrative. Imagine that I gave you $1000 because I’m generous. But you can only have this money for an hour, you can’t spend it, invest it, or use it in any way. So I’m not that generous with all the stipulations. 🙂 After the hour, I burn the $1000 note, so no one has it. This would be an example of conditional reality. The reality of $1000 can’t be argued but after the hour it no longer exists except in another form.
Our ego which we assume is a concrete, unchangeable edifice is in reality in constant flucation with the change of thoughts and moods. Either with physical death or with spiritual knowledge/gnosis, the ego disappears and then we can view the underlying reality of our connection to the All. So true and false are not moral judgements but aspects of timeboundedness and timelessness.