I had that strangest dream last night. I was on holiday in Cape Town, playing with Josh’s little sister, when a fly buzzed around us, annoying us. I took out this old plastic toy, something I’ve had since childhood… I don’t even remember what it is as it is part of something, a relic of the past and an object imbued with nostalgia, and pretended to shoot at the fly, making her laugh.
Then I “woke up”, into another day in the dream. My toy was gone. Another family member there had thrown it away. But they didn’t tell me the truth straight away, rather I had to pry it out of them, getting bits and pieces until finally they confessed to breaking it by accident and then throwing it away. As this person evaded every question, I became increasingly angry. Angrier and angrier, I was absolutely livid by the end, when I woke up for real.
I woke from that dream, enraged that this person had so recklessly damaged and discarded my precious… what? Here’s the thing: My subconscious mind had fabricated this old toy with a backstory; actually not so much a backstory but rather the emotional baggage that comes with one. I have no such item. But the anger was real. The attachment was real. Attachment to a thing that never even existed.
So I awoke thinking about that. How often does it happen that things are important to us, but remove them and nothing changes? Or perhaps, we attach meaning and priority and emotional relevance to these things, but these things don’t really matter.
Not even much of an example, but meth used to be important to me. Heck, I couldn’t function without it and couldn’t imagine my life without it. But it’s been nearly eight years and my life is a shitload better without it. Likewise cigarettes. I had to have a smoke first thing after waking up, not to mention all those other times. It seemed so important. Now, just over four months without cigarettes and I can’t say I miss them.
But I wonder… How many other things are there, things I hold onto for nothing? Do we all do this? And I also wonder about the applications of the subconscious mind and suggestibility… If my sleeping mind could concoct something so important, when that thing didn’t exist, is there no application for this? Considering how most of us refuse to change our minds because of biases, imagine what could be done by taking away or introducing such biases to our subconscious minds.
But mostly, I wonder what people might do if they realize how meaningless some of their most important things actually are.
Case in point, I read this article earlier… Honestly I found it difficult to finish. Written by someone who directs music in a church, the article rails against churches who use singers with microphones to lead the worship – because that isn’t the proper way to worship, or something. It starts out well, but as you read on, the elitist sense of self importance and presumptuousness of the writer becomes almost unbearable. Imagine going to so much trouble to say that others aren’t doing their worship right, when worship as far as this atheist understands, is personal? Heck, as an atheist I could tell you the whole thing was a fucking waste of time because god isn’t real, but… Let’s not go there.
What I will say is… question what is important to you. Why is it important? Should it be? We humans do have a bad habit of finding meaning in the meaningless and it would be a godawful shame if you wasted your life devoting it to such things.
And excuse me if this post seems a little… fragmented? My son keeps interrupting me. I find it difficult to write when my concentrating gets broken. But the interruptions fit today’s topic, since he is important to me. He means very much to me, and this is meaning that’s real.