The Cage

We are in a cage, you and I.

There is only one cage for all of us. There is only one truth about the world, and of all the billions of us who have lived, with all their divergent views, only a handful could have possibly known it (and it is my present belief that none actually knew, nor do any know).

I’m not stuck in here with you. You’re stuck in here with me.

Consider this, though. Every thought you have takes place in this existence, through your own consciousness. There are no thoughts that you can think that do not demand that the world be as it is. Put simply, suppose that you belong to a religion, and that your religion is false. It is nonetheless a fact that your religion–and all your personal beliefs, in fact– could not have existed without this world in which they are false.

This has always been strange to me. It is the reason why we ask: how can a meaningless world specifically give rise to the desire for meaning? How can a godless world be necessary for the idea of God? This has been used as an argument for meaning and the existence of something like God. I do find those arguments compelling. But the fact is that this universe also specifically endows us with the resources to believe things that are not true about it. Every time you think a thought, you are only thinking what you have been specifically permitted (and perhaps forced) to think.

Strange indeed.


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