The human animal is a narrative animal. Life is lived as a story, the story of ‘me’. I, whoever I am, tell myself my own story, in which I am the hero, or the anti-hero. If I am depressive, I am the anti-hero. If in my story I am successful then I am the hero.
But what is success? If I am to be the anti-hero, then is it not the case that a deep depression is a success in my goal of anti-heroism? If my story is the story of a failure, is not failure my success story?
My story — whosoever I am — has a putative past and a fictional future.
The future is fictional because the future will never exist.
Whoever I am, and whatever my fantasy of the future may be, it will today be today as it is today today, there’s no other day. Check and see if this is true. No future can exist today, or it is not the future, is it? It’s today. Which means no future ever can exist; only today exists.
The past is putative for several reasons.
First, it exists only in imagination. The past is not present, it only seeks to be, through emotional attachments to past events — which are attachments to the past in the present.
Second, the past is continuously rewritten 1, consciously and unconsciously. As the hero (or anti-hero) in the story, all events are self-related in the story that is under construction.
Third, almost everything that ever apparently happened to the self in the presumptive past is forgotten. Nearly every meal, conversation, visit to the toilet — and every other act — is lost. So why are some few acts, actions, events, recalled? Well, they are recalled because they support the narrative that is being constructed. They are its building blocks.
Three reasons is enough to make the point. Can you see others?
I – whoever I am – for so long as I live in my narrative – whatever it may be – am a fictional being. That is, my being is fictional, factional, and not a fact. It’s a fiction created by my self.
There’s a simple step to correct this.
Give up the narrative. And the human. And the animal.
Move from a fictional being to being the fact.
Simple, sadly, does not imply easy.
The fictional self must die for this to happen. This hurts – for a while.
Once again, die before you die. If you want. If you can. If you can’t it probably doesn’t really matter… life goes on.