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Suspension of Disbelief

Most people are familiar with the phrase, ‘suspension of disbelief’. That is, when you are watching a movie, and especially if the movie is great and compelling, you forget that it is a movie that was created by a movie production company, the people are actors and the story is not real. In the midst of it, you feel that what you are watching is real; your disbelief is suspended. Without this unconscious psychological ‘trick’, the movie would have no, or minimal, effect. The better the movie, the more effective the trick. You rejoice, laugh, cry or fear the movie exactly because of that trick. Once you leave the theater you realize it was, ‘just a movie’. Now all of the good things, the bad things, the romantic, funny, suspenseful, scary or exciting things, which all seemed very real while they appeared, are gone, never having been real to begin with.

What happens when it is realized that the entirety of the appearance of this world is the same as a movie, the production company in this case being the mind? What happens if the suspension of disbelief ends for this ‘movie of life’? It is not about entering a transcendent state, experiencing eternal bliss or gaining any special, exalted condition. The suspension of disbelief simply ends. The life-movie is no longer believed as real, or substantive.

This doesn’t mean the denial of the appearance of world images, or maya, while they last, any more than it means the denial of the appearance of movie images while they last on the screen. You can still experience unpleasant thoughts, emotions and sensations. It just means it has no reality or substance, just like the movie. And because you know this, when the movie of these appearances ends, it is over. You leave the theater.

As well, all of the words of all of the teachers and teachings, philosophers and philosophies, expressors and expressions, sharers and sharings are equally movies of the mind. None of it has any special or superior value, meaning, importance, substance or truth, and that includes this writing. The projection of meaning, importance, sanctity or any special truth or value of any philosophy, teaching, insight, realization, sharing, inquiry or recognition, no matter how incredible or ‘experiential’ is an entirely mind-projected, non-substantive image, appearing on the screen of nothing.

Any idea of assistance, inspiration, teaching or guidance is a likewise mind-based projection, as substance-less as the non-dimensional images on the blank movie screen. We play these games: talking, sharing, helping, there’s no one helping, just talking to talk, expressing spontaneously, responding to a question extemporaneously, or whatever other clever way we say it, but, it is just like a movie in the theater—there are no actual people an no actual situations.

We may insist that we are being beneficial or being benefited, lending or receiving a hand, offering or receiving value, imparting or receiving insights, helping or being helped, but that is all part of the projected mirage, which appears to be—someone sharing something to someone, but in reality is—no one sharing nothing to no one.

There is no conclusion to be made from this writing. No meaning or understanding to figure out. This can’t be imparted, shared or shown. It is just a wink.

 


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