Inexistent Perceptions

Short Stories, Short Story — By on October 21, 2014 at 4:26 pm

Layal Wehbe 10 G1 | October 21, 2014

Constantly, I find myself questioning the validity of my existence or whether the world that we consider our own, is nothing but an esoteric illusion. With each day that passes, I feel myself slipping into delirium and find it harder to accept that this life I embrace truly exists.

Throughout my 23 years on Earth I have met and interacted with more people than I can possibly count, keeping in touch with a very tiny fraction of them. However, every person I have had the opportunity to speak to (no matter how briefly) affected me in a unique way, and brought light to a new aspect of my existence each time. Undoubtedly, some interactions were more enlightening than others – and this is the exact case of my conversation with someone I am not certain even exists.

I saw her once, and despite my lengthy quests to find her, I never saw her again. Our encounter was one that I am certain I will reminisce until the day I inhale my last breath. It was hard not to notice her amongst swarms of pale people because of her luminous, cerulean eyes and warm, olive skin – of course, upon seeing her I instantly felt envy, but even that couldn’t stop me from approaching her because of the way her eyes smiled as if concealing a mischievous secret.

“Hi, my name is Adrina, I’m a journalist from Carnet magazine and I’m writing an article on an array of people’s opinions and beliefs. Would you mind telling me what you think about rebellion, existence, rejection, envy or infinity?” I heard a voice asking her before my brain could even register that it was my own. She was silent for a moment, almost as if in a deep trance but then her face lit up, her eyes glimmered and she said “You’re not -” her amused grin broadened by the second “- but I’d like to tell you anyway.”

“Along with the wide variety of approaches to the question of existence and its meaning, are numerous people who created them. Some mathematical, some scientific but one that is rather comforting to believe is that of eastern philosophy. The certain word “Anicca” (impermanence) in Buddhism, refers to the fact that all conditioned things are in a state of constant change – meaning there is nothing that simply disappears or discontinues existing but rather its appearance alters from one shape/arrangement to another. Believing this, you’d probably feel somewhat secure and relief will presumably envelop you because you will be reassured that when you die you won’t just disappear into nothingness but your energy will be transferred into something else. I however, do not believe in that. In fact, I don’t believe anything truly exists. In my opinion, everything around you and me is a thought or an idea – an illusion as some may call it.

“The world around is surreal! Picture all the eclipses and thunderstorms you have witnessed. Think of the picturesque dawn that wakens everything it shines upon, the way it promises a new day, as well as a new life; now envision a scenic dusk that marks the end of yet another day, the sunset that brings weary parents back home to their children, back home to their happiness. Tell me, could something as magnificent as everything I mentioned, be real outside the walls of our vast imagination?”

I was stupefied; she was showering me with all these perceptions that contradicted my ordinary ones, I didn’t know how to respond.

She chuckled briefly only to proceed with an even deeper opinion. “Why do words exist?” She continued “why does the English language I am speaking to you in, exist? Because of humans and their imaginations. What are crimes? Violations of the law. Are the ‘crimes’ that people commit real? Your answer is probably yes. Why? Because we have labeled them as such, using our minds; if we did not consider these acts ‘wrong’ wouldn’t felonies be inexistent? Taking all of these points about things and terms people so easily label as ’existent’, into consideration, how are you so certain that you, a tiny speck of dust in this boundless universe, aren’t a mere production of someone’s mind that can be erased and forgotten in the blink of an eye? For all I know, you and I could be small segments of someone’s vivid dream and soon enough, we shall be sucked back into the black hole of nothingness as they wake up.

“Years from now, I’ll just be an idea in your mind. You will never see me again and you will question whether this encounter ever occurred.  If you ponder upon it for long periods of time, you might even lose your mind to the madness and never regain it – but then again, can lunacy exist if you do not want it to?

“Farewell, Adrina. Next time you attempt to use ‘journalism’ as an excuse, be sure to have a tape recorder or at least a pen and a notepad with you.” She concluded, not in an unkind tone.

“I didn’t catch your name” I remarked

“It doesn’t exist”

“Do you?” I persisted

“Maybe” she laughed as she walked away.

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