Too many years ago, Paul Miller and I had the pleasure of spending time with 'Magic George'. Magic George is a psychologist and magician who helps disengaged individuals - especially youngsters - re-engage through the medium of magic.
The key 'Aha!" moment for me was that Magic George was able to demonstrate to me that my eyes really didn't see the 'real' world. He showed me how my eyes had to invent some of reality in order to make sense of the world. He explained and showed me that I actually don't have the sensory apparatus to 'see' reality as it truly is.
To a certain degree...
Another couple I've been fortunate to come across are husband and wife team, Benjamin and Rosamund Zander. Benjamin and Rosamund Stone Zander's book, "The Art of Possibility," is one of those books that just might change your life. I have the book and the audio version - and the audio version still brings me to tears, even after listening to it time after time. Tears, and for the right reasons - this is deeply moving material.
I'll lift just one profound point from the Zanders' book:
It's all made up!
Benjamin and Rosamund are unambiguous on this point: we invent our lives and the rules we live by.
Clearly this isn't ultimate or absolute truth... some things are real. In terms of living day-to-day, though, it is enormously liberating to realise that most of this 'stuff' we see as the rules and regulations of life is made up - make believe - invented as we go along...
...and that means we can challenge it!
In Society, when what we make up gets believed by enough people, we make it Law - and then it has another dimension of credibility, but it is still invented!
When I began to drive, you didn't have to wear a seat-belt. Hey, in my Dad's day, it was pretty common to drive back half-cut from the pub. I make no moral judgment on this - I merely make a point: the rules have changed because we have invented new rules.
Am I suggesting then that we break all the rules? No!
Am I suggesting that we begin to break some of the rules? Yes!
I am suggesting that we see them for what they are: mere invention; mere things we've been led to believe, and thus they are 'make belief'. Understanding this gives us permission to question and to challenge and to change.
There are, for example, dozens of rules that bind your own behaviour (and even your beliefs) that are ridiculous and inappropriate. Maybe today is the day when we can encourage the Conscious Revolutionary in you to challenge just one of them?
Far more of what you perceive is illusion and invention, and, for these reasons, everything is worth a closer look.
You've invented your life. You can reinvent yourself - starting today. This is 'life on purpose' - the deliberate life.
A Moodscope member.