(The Burdens of Triumph painted by Noah Bradley
We are all part of one being. I am that being. I do not proclaim to be God, nor do I deny the idea that I could possibly be of that nature. And if I am, so are you and so is everyone else, because we are all one (or of one). So, what is this “one”? It could be the universe; it could be the mind; it could be the spirit. It could be all of these, or it could be none of these. I cannot say for sure.
Maybe time is not concrete. Maybe all that has ever happened and all that will ever happen is occurring at this moment.
If we are all of one mind (potentially just me), then I don’t know whether or not other people are actually real. My only reason for believing that others exist is that I see, hear, and interact with them. I can’t know for sure that these other beings (you and everyone else) are real, because I do not see what they are doing when I am not around (think: “If a tree falls in the forest…”). I only know what I can see, and even then I can’t be too sure. It might just so happen that people are doing nothing without me, and they only appear to be alive because of my interactions with them. Or, it could be that people are doing things while I’m not there, because if you put a bunch of living organisms together then they’re bound to react with each other and the “things” around them. Think of it this way: people are complex organisms created by some greater force (whatever force you want to believe, i.e. big bang theory, God, or what have you). When you put these organisms together, they interact with each other and they react to the things and situations surrounding them in specific ways due to their biology and their chemistry.
But we are more than just complex organisms, right? Or, at least I am.
I can’t even prove that the physical world is real. Maybe it’s like all those movies portray, where I’m just in a dream. Maybe everything that surrounds me (us) is just what I have constructed with my mind. If so, will I ever wake up? Is death when I “wake up” from life?
I’ve had this feeling for a very long time…as long as I can remember, really. When I was little I used to think that I had magical powers or that I was some sort of all-knowing god (or both). Now I can say it’s more likely the fact that I understand people well. I’m a thinker and a feeler. I perceive others’ feelings well, and I internalize them, and I know how to conceptualize them. With this “power” I can easily relate to others. I used to believe that I could read minds, now I know it’s that I’m perceptive (and introverted in the way that I perceive information).
Sometimes I feel so manipulative, though. It’s as if I want certain things for others so badly (things that are often actually good) that I manipulate people into doing things so that these certain things will happen. It’s as if I want these good things to happen for them so badly that I trick them into wanting these good things to happen for themselves. I’m not sure if that’s really manipulative or really kind?
If you look at it one way, I am egotistical; if you look at it another, I am the complete opposite.
Everything we know and understand was constructed by humans. All of the ideas and concepts we’ve ever heard, and that have ever existed (or will ever exist), were created by humans.
It’s all so complex, and, yet, it’s so simple. My mind is all (the only thing) that I can prove is real.
This is all we know. Maybe our knowledge is more extensive than we believe it to be. Maybe not. We can’t ever know whether or not we can be totally sure.
But this all makes me afraid.
I’m afraid that it is just me and the universe; that the people who I love are just projections of myself; that I am alone.
And even if others are real, what if I have, and will only ever love myself? And what if I can’t even do that?
What if I am all there is, and after me there is nothing at all?
I’m afraid that life on Earth is all there is. I believe in more than just this, but that sliver of doubt that constantly sits at the back of my mind leaves me fearful of a place that is nothing—a place that is not.
While I may believe in some sort of predetermination, I do not believe that my actions on Earth should reflect this idea of solipsism…in fact, quite the opposite. For our time here as physical beings, we must stand for our rights, for what is relevant to our impermanent situation (here, on Earth, as physical and emotional beings). And, most importantly, we must be good people (without need for motive) to ourselves and to others.