This is not about that big lie that Trump told, and that his minions keep alive.
As big and dangerous as that lie has been, and will continue to be, I’m thinking about lies that are so big that they become the fabric of our society.
Hard work pays off: Sure, it can pay off. But when it comes to things like work, this lie gets told to us by bosses, managers, and even co-workers.
The hard truth is that there are no guarantees in life. I have learned the hard way, first hand, that you can work really hard at something and get absolutely nowhere.
The cream rises to the top: This saying can be applied to different situations. While it might be true in things like sports, with regard to work, this is simply not the case.
This saying is in support of another lie that is sold, known as The Meritocracy. In this concept, those who are talented will always rise to the top and “succeed.”
You may have a proper education and experience, and other things that give you merit. However, you can also not be connected, or not play office politics well. Whatever the case may be, your merits can, and most probably will, be rendered irrelevant.
Intelligence is power: Intelligence can be helpful and useful. These days, it is best to hide your intelligence, lest you be confronted by someone who is anti-intellectual.
But within the context of work, your intelligence does not matter as much as who you know and what connections you have.
These are just some of the lies that keep the wealthy and powerful in their positions. They count on everyone believing these things. This is why our American educational system is so horrible. It’s no accident. Keep people stupid, so they are easier to scare and control.
I could go on with a bigger list of this, but after a while it begins to feel redundant. This is not just because these lies come from humans, but also because they all revolve around the concept of money.
Money is a mutually-agreed-upon mass delusion, that is similar to the tuning of musical instruments. That’s to say, we all have to agree on certain terms. In the case of music, we will generally tune to an A440 for maximum results.
In the case of money, consider a dollar bill. We all must agree that it is worth a dollar in order for it to have any value. So when you work, your boss gives you that dollar. You accept it, because you believe in its value.
Your landlord, local grocery, and other service providers also view that dollar as being worth a dollar. The Stock Market might decide that dollar is worth $1.03, or that it’s worth $0.72, so the value slips and slides here and there.
Almost all of us believe in that delusion.
What would I consider to be the absolutely biggest lie of all? One might guess that I would offer up religion. Truth be told, that’s a really close one, because it utilizes and promotes an even bigger lie that all of us buy into. Even me.
It’s the lie that permanence exists in the world.
Religions promote the idea of “forever,” which is a difficult number to envision. Considering that we live a mere 70-100 years, on average, forever doesn’t really have much meaning.
When people get married, they talk about it being “forever,” as if their current state is permanent. Maybe they are in that place where, if they were both frozen and never grew as adults, it might be the case. “Forever” would come to an end the minute one of them dies, best case.
But adults grown and change. Not only does each person’s wants and needs change, but their ability and willingness to meet the needs of others change as well.
For this reason, the promise of “forever,” in regard to anything, is a fool’s errand. And yet, some people still demand and require the promise of forever, if they are expected to live their very temporary lives.
Circling back to the idea of marriage, it is suggested that a marriage is not successful unless it lasts “forever.” There is that other phrase, “’til death do you part.” This kind of works against the “forever” sentiment.
How do you know that your marriage was successful? When you wake up one day, and lying next to you is a cold corpse. That is, assuming that you weren’t the one to die, in which case you’ll never truly know if your marriage was successful.
When my life would be in a good place, I’d think, “Yeah, I finally made it. I’ve achieved something.” And then, it gets yanked away quickly.
Then I find myself in a bad place and think, “Ah, crap, my life is screwed and I’ll never get out of this.” Then it would get a bit better, usually when someone helps me out.
I have believed that my various states in life were achievements where I could sit and stay, at least for a while. But even a moment is too much to ask. Things keep changing and happening.
The concept of permanence is something that feeds a sense of security. It might be why people find comfort in the idea of being in a place like “heaven” forever. I suppose it helps if they don’t believe they’ll end up in “hell,” but I digress.
When I was a kid, I thought that certain powers would be in power when I grew up. This includes things like the music industry. Today, the music industry doesn’t have nearly the power it once did.
I also believed that my parents would always be powerful people. My father died in 2003, so not really all that powerful today.
Even temporary permanence brings comfort. Any friendship or relationship I have will be temporary, given the temporary nature of human life. Still, I want them around.
With all of this deception revolving around the illusion of permanence, it makes sense that humans want to believe that they are also permanent. If not physically, then spiritually, with the idea being that your spirit lives on in a spirit world forever.
There is no evidence that this is something that factually happens.
What will become of me?
The thing that I call “me” is an illusion that the brain generates to create a sense of self. That sense of self is used to participate, negotiate, and otherwise maneuver through life. Without the illusion of the self, one would not think, “I need to find shelter,” or any other thoughts. Instead, they would be left in the cold, accepting the way things are, until death.
Survival without this illusion might very well be impossible.
The wild thing about this illusion is that it works even if you acknowledge that it is an illusion. It’s the lie you believe, even if you know it’s a lie.
But for an eternity before my birth, I did not exist. At least, I have no conscious memory of an existence. Before my birth, there certainly was no brain in the picture, whipping up the illusion of the self.
Then, I was born. The brain in this body began to generate a person, or “ego,” by taking in the reactions and responses of others to this self. Those reactions and responses from others were based on their limited and biased view of the being that my brain inhabits.
Since the brain in this biological entity is Autistic, it presents in a certain way that puts others off. They react and broadcast this reaction. This brain receives the reaction, misconceives all of it, and creates a “me” to get through life.
It’s not an effective or efficient thing. Not at all.
As it is, I have bandied about through this life, doing what I thought needed to be done and living the way I sense is best for my being. And after a while, this body will cease to work. Blood will stop flowing, and stop delivering oxygen to the brain.
The brain will die, and so will that illusion of “me” that it created in my formative years.
What happens after that?
Many like to believe that they enter a spirit world. I see no evidence of this spirit world, so I do not cling to that idea.
What I think happens is that thing I call “me” goes away after the body goes away. I do not believe that I have a spirit that will live on. If I am wrong, and there is a spirit, then it may very well return to the state in which is existed before I was born.
This is a state of nothingness. No fear. No punishment. No earthly or humanly emotions, responsibilities, or concerns.
Just nothing. Forever.
Was I even alive? If I don’t exist, then that is not possible. I’d not think about being alive, if it weren’t for that pesky concept of dying. And dying is the only thing that we can prove at this point. Or can we?
So far as I can tell, life is an illusion caused by death.
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