Thursday, August 09, 2018

You read a story. Much of it didn't make sense to you. But you were seeking a story to serve as a frame of reference and give meaning to your existence, and this was a popular and compelling one. You discovered that there were many voices who were happy to explain the story to you in great detail. Their details often didn't match one another, but each of them was very sure about their way of telling the story. You learned to use the story (in the form it had been explained to you) as a filter for assessing everything: from scientific claims to the worthiness of various people to your own condition. If something challenged or contradicted the story, you rejected that thing. You were told that people who didn't believe the story, or who failed to believe it adequately, or who understood it incorrectly, would suffer terribly. But that claim seemed contradictory to the central point of the story itself. And you realized that in other people's opinion it was *you* who understood the story incorrectly, because your version didn't match theirs. Eventually, after long and careful scrutiny, you concluded that the story was just that: a story. You also realized that clinging so tightly to the story had caused you to believe ridiculous things and do regrettable things. In many ways, trying to live according to the story had caused you to live in denial of reality. Eventually you decided you would prefer to seek reality, whatever the cost. Even if it meant letting go of stories and learning to say "I don't know." And you found great freedom in that. And you discovered that reality isn't a story. It just is.



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