We Hallucinate Our Own Reality
Jim Morrison sang: People are Strange, When You're a Stranger.
What the Buddha discovered under that Banyan tree, back when he woke up (A.K.A became enlightened) is pretty much the same thing. Except he called it 'Dependent Origination' or sometimes it's translated as 'Dependent Co-Arising.' I won't go deeply into this terminology (too be honest I don't yet fully grasp it), but I do understand it to mean: Things are a little less real than they appear. OR: There's more to this (read: everything) than we can see right now.
A self-fulfilling prophecy is the socio-psychological phenomenon when someone predicts or expects something, causing this prediction or expectation to come true because the person believes it will and the person hence acts in a way to fulfill the belief.
Kind of like the placebo effect. A depressed person receives a sugar pill but thinks they are getting a highly effective anti-depressant and start to feel better.
It's almost twenty years now, since I watched the twin towers on fire from the rooftop of my then Brooklyn home. It both seems like another lifetime and like yesterday. My memory from that time is both blurry and crystal clear. So many things I seem to remember but I'm not sure if they actually ever happened.
I do remember sitting at my kitchen table, very sad, and just having talked on the phone with my mom in Sweden. I had just moved from Manhattan to Brooklyn, to live with my boyfriend. But just a few days before I had found out that my boyfriend had cheated on me, and we'd had a blowout. I'd destroyed a bunch of his shit and his glasses (so he was stumbling through his hallucinated world blind as a bat). I thought I loved him, so I was very sad that seemingly he didn't love me as much as I loved him. Plus I was worried about where I'd live now that I had given up my rat-infested apartment but cheap apartment in Manhattan.
I hung up the phone, probably cried some more and chain-smoked some more. Then my German neighbour came down the fire escape, looking in and saying: The World Trade Center is on fire. Actually I don't really remember exactly what he said. But he quickly climbed back up, with his camera back and I followed. And we stood up there, watching. What did we actually see? A plane hitting? Flames? Smoke?
I remember the phone lines being impossible to get through on. I had no television at home, so I rode my bike to friends' house and sat there with them, watching the story unfold. I was mostly wrapped up in my own break-up misery though.
Two people go to the same party or to the same all-inclusive holiday. One has a great old time, the other one hates it.
Because we create our lives, our realities largely inside our minds.
Meditation is like beginning to understand the construction, like peaking under the hood of a car and learning about the different parts, how they work together. When we understand the construction, we can deconstruct it. In order to see more clearly. In order to suffer less.