Reflections: Life as fantasy

All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.
— William Shakespeare, from As You Like It

The Bard wasn’t the first person to see life in the material world as a fantasy. Eastern philosophies like Buddhism and Hinduism talked about the illusionary nature of our existence long before Shakespeare penned As You Like It. And many writers, such as C.S. Lewis with his Narnia series and J.R.R. Tolkein with his Lord of the Rings series and Lewis Carroll with his Alice in Wonderland, created enchanting fantasy worlds based on ours. Yes, we are the hobbits of the Shire and the people of Narnia and the Alices of Wonderland.

Like all the great stories, the world as we know it has its antagonists and protagonists. It seems we humans need our “real-life” dramas with all their plots and themes and schemes. I doubt that we would be content in an Eden; indeed, that was the theme of the biblical story, yes? It set the stage for the multiple dramas that is life on Earth.

But so wrapped up are we in our roles that we seldom step back and see them as fantasy, not unlike when we are immersed in a good book or a movie: for the moment, all is real. But comes a time, when we have read the last page or viewed the last scene, we remember that it was all the dream of a writer, just as we may see as we make our final stage exit in this life.

But who is scripting our roles? And what audience is watching the Days of 8 Billion Lives in our multi-channel world?

Merrily, merrily, merrily . . .

— Jillian

3 thoughts on “Reflections: Life as fantasy

  1. Actually, my own interpretation of those lines from As You Like It are not that we fantasize about alternative existences which we often do, but that we actually live out different existences, not only day-to-day, but especially to other people.

    For example, we behave differently towards people we work with than we do to people we live with. We tell our kids one thing and then do another ourselves. It is what we are. It makes us what we are, even if it is to be inconsistent or even just hypocritical.

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  2. I play out my life interpreting what my senses bring to my attention, through the experience my memory tells me I have. Both the sensing and the memories are subjective, but it is what I take as being “real”. I play out the drama of my life in the fantasy that is continually unfolding in my head. I interpret the actions of others based on my own inclinations. Who is scripting my role? I am.

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