Monthly Archives: August 2020

You Can’t Stay Where You Were: Part One

Everything has changed: you know it, and everyone around you knows it, even though there may be some people that insist it’s all a fake. When people believed the world was flat, they acted as though it were, so it might as well be flat, until “suddenly” it was round. When people believe in something, they make it real. But here is the strange thing: stories are real. Everyone knows who Sherlock Holmes is, even though he never lived, really. Some people might say that he does, but for most of us, he’s just a character in several stories.

However, some of the things this imaginary person said are said by others. “Elementary.” “The game’s afoot.” “Once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.” In this way, Sherlock Holmes is as alive as any other person: he is remembered, and people feel they can learn from him. So, you might say that it’s good to keep learning, even though the source is made up.

Memories are made up: what you remember happening to you once long ago isn’t happening to you now. This may seem obvious. But when you remember, again and again, how someone called you names, or hit you for no reason, or ordered you around, you are making that memory as real as some people make Sherlock Holmes! The trouble is, the same way you can’t shake Mr. Holmes’ hand, you can’t fix what happened in your memory by remembering it. You need to see the memory in a new way: this is the road you traveled, a long time ago, but it isn’t where you are now.

If you keep trying to go back into your memory to change things, you really can’t. You need to change what is going on now, and what is true now. The same way you can’t eat yesterday’s food, you can’t find something you lost in the past. You need to look for it now.