Waking up in the Dream

In “The Peaceful Warrior” film Socrates takes Dan up into the rafters of the Gymnastic Club of University of California, Berkeley. He shows Dan the internal dialogue of all his fellow gymnasts. Later in the film he gets Dan to turn off his internal dialogue by throwing him off a bridge into a river. In the absence of internal dialogue Dan has temporary enhanced perception. He has woken up in the dream, the nightmare, which humanity has self-created. He sees more than he had previously imagined possible.

As I walked around the pond this morning, I was trying to remember what it felt like to be plagued by internal dialogue. I was unable to. As a rule of thumb my mind is quiet and if I want to think, I have to initiate thinking. Thinking is a conscious process. I need to boot up the apparatus. I do not have a circle line train going round and round 24/7.

Many imagine that if they stopped the world they “think” they live in their “sanity” might collapse. A long time ago I used exist in a “world” in which student satisfaction surveys, Times Higher Education ranking and Research Excellence Frameworks demarcated the boundaries of reality. They even gave me hundreds of thousands of pounds to play with lasers.

I exist beyond that world now and in so far as I can tell I am quite sane. I live deep in nature and not the inner city. Wildlife comes and we experience the seasons fully.

In “The Matrix”, Neo is unplugged from the electricity grid and he wakes up from the software dream which was used to pacify his mind so that they could use him as a Duracell. Real life was much simpler.

These days many are so plugged in that they do not notice the seasons. We have the phenomenon of ‘phone zombies, walking the streets of our cities. We get to hang out in hospital waiting rooms. The first thing that ~80% of the people do is whip out their ‘phones. People are fearful of silence and having nothing to distract themselves. The other 20% are our age or older.

If you wake up in the dream you see that the “insistence” of the world you self-create is not as real as you insist it to be. The terror, the fear of missing out is an illusion. If you miss “Strictly Come Dancing” on the television you may not be able to talk about it with the other vegetables, but you probably won’t stop breathing.

If King Charles III and I were alone in the jungle at night and along came a hungry leopard. Who is more important and has higher kudos to the leopard? The leopard does not care. It would probably eat Charles first because he is older and possibly slower than me. The importance which humans bestow on rank is something made up in human “mind” and socio-political hierarchies.

A while back I tutored a young man who lived in big house in Hampshire. It was on an estate of similar houses all worth well in excess of a million. One morning I got there and there was evidence of a party from the night before and his mum was looking a tad hungover. She apologised profusely for the mess. I said to her that houses were not for show but for living in and she relaxed. This is the kind of thing societal constraints of ought and should evoke.

Internal dialogue can be very judgemental, both of self and others. Matt, teenage kiss by the bins outside the disco, Hancock has been very heavily tutted at. People want him to suffer in the bushtucker trials. Are not human beings great?

If you want to wake up in the dream, you need to stop the internal dialogue and then stop the world so you can see it for what it is. You will have to confront this fear of missing out…otherwise you will continue to exist in Avīci.