One of the central themes of all my writings – even the My Haunted Life series – is the nature of reality and the role that we may play in dictating that. Over the last twenty or so years (if not my entire life really), I have read, meditated on, studied and discussed this topic and the process I have come to several conclusions. One of these is that I now believe that much of our world is an illusion.
It’s easy to draw analogies with movies like the Matrix here and I and others often do but what I mean is a lot of what we think we know isn’t real. It isn’t truth nor fact. I once said (and thought it was rather cute) –
“The more I think on it the more I realize that certainty is an illusion. History was written by the winner, the news is provided with a spin and other people are opaque. We know nothing for certain. It used to be that the internet might provide information,but it too is now nothing but opinion and scare mongering. Nothing can be relied upon. We have to look inside ourselves for anything of value – anything that can be relied upon – but it too is colored by our ego and personalities.
So in the end, if the past is a colored view and the future a fancy, what do we have left?
Simply to live in the moment…..” (The Mystical Hexagram (Vasey & Vincent, 2012)).
Life is an enigma and I may never actually understand the answers but I do know this. Everything that we take to be true is probably not. Let me give a few examples;
1. History – history is written by the winner and it reflects a perception or view of what happened. There are alternative histories for everything and the sad thing is, they are all colored by the same issue.
2. Education – Education is partly about providing certain tools – reading, writing, critical thinking, analysis – but only in limited degree. The rest of education is essentially to ‘brainwash’ you with cultural normalities, cultural convention and to ensure you don’t actually challenge the system. Most people accept what they are told as the gospel truth and never for a minute stop to think critically or analytically about things. In this way, the illusion is maintained.
3. Religion – While all religions are probably based on wisdom and spiritual truth, they are all and without exception, subverted to match someone’s political or cultural agenda. They become the basis by which people can be manipulated and controlled.
4. On a more mundane level, the music or entertainment industry can be used to prove its all illusion too. Many singers can’t sing (they use computer software now to ensure perfect pitch), many musicians can’t actually play, many live performances are lip synched. It’s all a lie (It didn’t used to be). Actors and actresses public personas are creations and false often nothing like the reality. Show business is really all a show – an illusion – just like everything else in your life.
5. You are bombarded day in and day out with messages – some subliminal and others in your face – buy this, eat this its good for you, holiday here and so on. The marketing machine uses our ability to imagine and visualize – a rudimentary skill though it is in the majority of us) and uses OUR magic making ability and equipment to have us make THEIR reality. Our magic has been hijacked!
I could go on and on but I won’t. Don’t ask me who the THEY might be. I have no idea and I am not a conspiracy theorist – that’s just another fantastical dead end. That there is a THEY – whether THEY actually know it or not, I am sure.
I also have concluded this. Given everything turns out to be illusion and that I cannot trust anything, then I must turn to the only thing I can rely on – me. Unfortunately, I have to first clear the Me of all the nonsense I have been conditioned with and am bombarded with daily. As Mark Stavish terms it – I must know my own mind. This is far from easy and may not be attainable at all but I can make progress towards it and, in doing so, I can take control of my life and my reality. I can be a true mage and imagine my thoughts into reality. Of course, I also live in other people’s realities too and I must learn how to interact with their parallel universes too.
You know, if the outer world we call life is an illusion while the inner world is real then surely, the Kingdom of heaven truly is within us and faith – well, it can move mountains.