Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dreams and reality

Or: "geophf, why do you write this way?"

My most recent chapter of MSR has had rather a galvanizing effect on my reviewers. Was it a dream?

This, of course, has set me off. What is the nature of reality?

May I tell you something personal? I'm (kinda) Jewish.

Let me explain.

There's been this big 'debate' for more than a few years now about the Torah in Christendom about 'Creationism' particularly on the point of Genesis: did all those things literally happen?

I'm not going to argue that point, because ... nope, I'm not going to argue that point, but I am going to stand by my Jewish brethren here. They do not ask "did this really happen?" as if they are trying to score points with G-d as to who is more righteous in His eyes. No, they take the Creation Story and ask, instead, the following question: "What can we learn from this?"

The point, or a point, of the Creation Story is not whether it happened (you can argue until you are blue in the face, if that so pleases you), but what does it mean for us.

Did our heroine experience those things in reality or was it all just a dream?

Is it a dream? When you dream, do you know that you are dreaming? Are you awake right now, reading a diatribe from geophf, or are you dreaming?

"I'm awake, geophf, because I know I'm awake."

Study the epistemology of that statement and get back to me on that.

If the Hindus say that this is all Maya ... and they've been around four thousand years or more ... maybe there's something in that? If the aborigines in the outback say that this is the dreamtime, what proof does the measurement of technology have to naysay that?

Who are you; what are you; why are you.

Are you real? And what is reality?

It's so easy to compartmentalise everything into its nice little box: "Oh, Bella's dreaming" "Oh, Rosalie's calling Bella a weird name" Ever notice that every box we put reality into, there's always something that bursts the boundaries of the box? I sure do, and I'm a mathematical philosopher, so the boxes I make are air- and water-tight, but still, messy, confusing, unboxable reality has a way of making me rethink my neat little boxes I try to put reality into.

Rosalie has this problem, big-time. She has everything all planned out. Her life, her marriage, her capture of this girl, everything. What worked out exactly the way she planned it?

You know the saying: "One sure way to make G-d laugh: tell Him your plans."

So this is a dream? Why? Because you want it to be? What happens when our girl doesn't wake up from this 'dream'?

Maybe she does, maybe she doesn't: but it's not up to anybody to dictate what is reality, because it is, regardless of what we want it to be or what we think it is. That's why philosophy is so important, because when we begin to peel back the layers of what we believe to see what is really there (layer after layer), we can start to live more in harmony with the Tao: no fight-no blame.

Is this a dream?

That question doesn't matter and isn't important. What matters is this: what to do from here?

Our girl, sometimes, isn't very good at doing that. And sometimes she is.

And that's not important, really, either. What's important is this:

You've experienced something, ... reading this, or dreaming a terribly sad dream, or losing a loved one, or being diagnosed with cancer, or something small or great.

What will you learn from that? What are you going to do about it?

1 comment:

Master of the Boot said...

The thing about people is that they want to be told what something is in a story. Me, I like a little confusion and bizzareness. Surreality is the spice of life for me. Give me strange, give me bizzre.

Labelling things is fun because it allows me to be surprised. If I label something, then I can't wait to see how it breaks the mould.

I had no idea you were Jewish. This won't change our relationship though. I'll just make more ruthless Jewish jokes behind your back.

Just kidding, I'd never do that.