The great task in life is to find reality.
We make most mistakes, we suffer the most, and we do the most harm when our thoughts and beliefs differ from reality. It’s when we create stories and assumptions in our own mind which are untrue that we begin on a journey of falsehoods. And, those falsehoods lead to; alcohol abuse, drugs, eating disorders, gambling, heavy smoking, self-harm, casual sex ~ just to find temporary comfort and the illusion that our falsehoods are true. When our beliefs are untrue we can suffer from anxiety and depression, together with a host of other serious mental illnesses such as; Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder. The stress of having beliefs which differ from reality causes a raft of physical illnesses, including cardiovascular problems, cancers, diabetes, dementia, and early death.
Yet, there is no such thing as reality.
Reality is an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. ~ Albert Einstein
It seems that in quantum physics and interpersonal relationships there is no such thing as cause and effect ~ no straight line between the past, through the present, and into the future. Even in very close relationships there are often merely shared perceptions of the world ~ and two people may both share perceptions, thoughts, and beliefs which are untrue. If alcohol, drugs, or mental illness is added into the mix then we get dangerous situations such as physical, verbal, mental abuse and co-dependency.
If your life is going down the shitter, if you are prey to addictions, if you suffer from a mental illness ~ then the chances are that your thoughts and beliefs have seriously differed from reality.
Einstein and other serious thinkers may tell us that reality is merely an illusion, BUT on a day to day basis we have to live in whatever reality surrounds us. That means seeing and accepting reality as it is, and not as we wish it to be. Reality is neutral and impersonal. Reality has no expectations and no beliefs. Reality is the true state of things. There is only one past, present, and future reality ~ it is our own perceptions and beliefs which create an infinity of different versions of the past, the present, and the possible futures.
To find true reality is both very easy and very difficult;
- be totally honest with yourself and others ~ reality is truth
- never take things personally ~ reality is impersonal
- do not make assumptions nor create expectations
Some say that reality is an illusion. And that we are all just simulations living in a matrix. All I know is that when my beliefs differed from reality I got myself into some serious trouble.
to discover your ultimate reality requires a lot of deep thought
There is no such thing as ultimate truth, truth is what we make it.
Why do you think the world is so complicated? Why are our lives so difficult? Why do we become addicted, angry, depressed, ill, stressed? Why do we fall in and out of love? Why do we love those who don’t love us?
If Einstein and other deep thinkers are to be believed, none of it is real anyway.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. ~ Albert Einstein.
Einstein’s words reveal a deeper truth. Everything we feel, see, hear, touch, and taste is within our own minds. All of our innermost emotions and all of our truths exist only within our own minds. Even the deepest emotions such as fear and love are created within us. We actually have to learn to see and hear. We have to learn to fear fire, snakes, lions, and abandonment. We learn to love and we learn to hate somewhere before we are seven years of age, and then we spend the rest of our lives perfecting those emotions, up to the point that they can destroy us.
The deepest feelings we build within ourselves can destroy us, just as Dr. Frankenstein was destroyed by the monster he created.
There is a truism heard within 12-step meetings such as Alcoholics Anonymous;
Most folks are just about as happy as they make up their minds to be. ~ Abraham Lincoln, (allegedly).
Thus it follows that most folks can be just as addicted, angry, depressed, ill, stressed….. as they make up their minds to be. For sure most people can be just as in love, or not in love as they really want to be.
But, and as Shakespeare said; ‘therein lies the rub’. Reality is a habit, it’s what we accept, it’s what we’re used to, it’s what works for us right now. So, if you’re an alcoholic it really is just a habit, albeit one that’s killing you, and something about that habit works for you right now.
Changing a deep-set habit is
fucking damn difficult. In fact your whole life is a set of deep-rooted habits, and changing all those really is fucking difficult.
But I’ve done it. I changed my whole life and all of my ways of thinking around by believing these few words I said to myself; ‘I am a really cool guy, living a great life.’
If you are prepared to do whatever it takes you can change your whole life, including what is true or false.
Your reality is what you make it
the value of money is illusory
cash has no real intrinsic value other than that which we give it
Without a ruthless search for and acceptance of reality it is almost impossible to live a rewarding Life which will fulfill your true potential. Yet the vast majority of people would rather live in denial than accept the truth of their personal situation.
Chronic Denial of Reality can be seen in almost all alcoholics, compulsive gamblers, drug addicts, the obese, criminals, politicians, people in dysfunctional relationships… Yet without admitting there is a problem there is no possibility of fixing the problem.
Accepting and embracing reality is usually difficult and painful. But, the first of the Great Truths is that Life is Difficult and Painful. The path to recovery from suffering and mediocrity lies is recognizing this truth. In fact, dedication to recognising and accepting the truth makes us better able to deal with the real world, and not be trapped in the world inside our own heads. Real truth is reality, ~ lying to ourselves and lying to others traps us in an unreal, looking-glass world.
There is a strong tendency to hope that bad things will just go away. There is an even stronger tendency to lie to ourselves, and completely ignore negative feelings, events, and situations. This shows either a total lack of self-discipline, and / or an underlying psychological or issue. Even when one is searching for truth and reality, the real issues and problems are sometimes difficult to discover.
In my own case I spent years suffering all kinds of symptoms, from alcohol abuse to being in a series of dysfunctional relationships, before I was strong enough, and willing enough, to search deeply inside myself for the truth. For most of my life I was unwilling to accept reality. I have now realised that I suffer from a borderline personality disorder ~ a fear of abandonment. Which is one reason I live alone, as not having a partner means that I could not be abandoned by my partner. Fear of abandonment is common and if you suffer from it the disorder will blight every relationship you ever have ~ even to the extent of not entering into close relationships in the first place.
What is Denial? What is Truth? What is Reality? Denial is not a river in Egypt. Denial is actively refusing to accept the truth. There is no absolute truth ~ my truth is different from your truth. For me, searching for the truth seems to be a daily challenge to ignore the myriad surreal falsehoods which come my way. There is no ultimate reality. My reality is different from your reality ~ and I’m not ever completely certain what is real and what is a lie. For example, I firmly believe in the law of cause and effect, but I now know that simple model of the Cosmos does not always hold true. Reality can be as disorienting as any dream state hallucination. The picture above is a seascape, but it is both true and unreal.
To do more than just survive, to get by in this world without continually suffering, and without being the cause of suffering in others, we just have to do the best we can to be as completely truthful and real as we can.