Surrounded By Stories
Everywhere we look, it seems, we are surrounded by stories. There’s the story of the war, with its dead and wounded. There’s the story of the economy, with its winners and losers, its owners and its exploited. There’s the story of politics, with its rulers and ruled, its activists and its disinterested. There’s the story of real estate, with its owners and owned, its buyers and sellers, its homed and its homeless. There’s the story of religion, with its believers and skeptics, it’s assenters and deniers, with its saints and its sinners. There’s the story of families, with its parents and siblings, its ancestors and newborns, its departures and arrivals. There’s the story of genders, with its sex, expressed and suppressed. There’s the story of empires with its servants and slaves and competing elites.
I just watched a story of small towns and opioid addictions, unemployment and underground economies. Then I read a story about shared journeys to the afterlife, the dying and their living companions traveling together, temporary partners to the lobby of paradise. Earlier I read story about the vaccinated and the not so, each with its angles on the truth of the matter. I also read a story about the propaganda of the enemy and how it sustains their illusions of righteousness while the other righteous right here remain firmly secure in their own bubble of skewed information.
Yesterday I read a story of one who was abducted, brainwashed and enslaved to work on other planets, supposed to be empty, for an elite doubtlessly accumulating a sizable debt of karma to go with their plunder while workaday citizens slumber in their routines.
All of this got me to thinking that our lives are indeed stories to be lived, told and retold until the need for stories withers away. Are all our incarnations some kind of uber-narrative, the story to end all stories? Will younger fresher souls replace our passions and desires with their own details of The Story, in any and all of its chapters, while we go on to some featureless future where character and plot are surplus to requirements? Will their playgrounds be filled with children from other places, for even distant galaxies are ultimately other places to be in some created form that serves as a vehicle for the spirit inside. Whether less evolved or more advanced than the humanoid form best adapted to earth, they are still spirits encased in some type of flesh, exploring all the ramifications of their stories, some of which include our participation.
Let’s face it: we all love a good story. Us and them and everyone in between. As humans we are hardwired, or so it would seem, to hearing a series of events unfold in sequence from an authoritative voice steeped in the complexities of life’s dramas, mysteries and surprises. For centuries we listened spellbound, fidgety or sleepy. Then we evolved to reading, taking the wheel for pacing and emphasis, if not the actual details. Then we emerged as observers of moving pictures, where the seeming reality almost overwhelmed us, making us forget, for a couple of hours that we had a life outside the theatre, a life that would resume when the escape was over.
Well this life, this incarnation, almost overwhelms us, letting us forget the life outside this theatre. And here’s the turn around: this is the escape from the peace of paradise, this is where we get jostled and jiggled till the pressure of bubbles wants to burst the bottle, spraying us everywhere from the compression of the container.