The gray, granulated waves of static beckoned, and I followed. My aural proclivities at that time were confined to musical treatments--I was trying to find a methodology to survive as if living by a recorded documentary that dictated my every action. My thoughts tremored and attached themselves to waves of novelty that I rode like a slide, until realizing my own inability to action, I landed face first in a mud puddle of indecision. Life by the book ceased that particular avenue of existence, and I was forced to investigate other forms of being.
Previously I documented patterns of social change for the Cataract Office of the Belleview. Sitting high in a stone tower, I would look outside of my window and see unfettered verisimilitude over green grasses, occasional trees fractally distributed about, and not wonder a single moment over its blandness. My mind calculated and adjusted in order to fit within the social parameters of living within this terrain. I put my pen to paper to continue the cause--statistics, and then a change occurred.
I was listening carefully to the docutape that accompanied my initiation packet; it was all they gave us to listen to. The instructions were clear, and already second nature to my pattern-recognition system. I'd been living this way since I was born--so long that I couldn't tell the difference between the tapes and life. When driving in my automobile, the playing of the tape would begin, dictating the formalities of actually occurring within the biosphere: social relations between family and friends, business cordiality, and of course, the Courtship of the Opposites.
Within this complicated system, we were to perform righteous, predetermined acts that were sure to instigate a proposal of commitment. Both the Opposite and I were programmed to behave within this function, and we met our duties with pride. Upon forming a joiner, a ceremony was held. Wwithin each minute action of our lives, the whole of our existence formed. Complimenting our particular life cycles was a regiment of bio-intakes, which when subscribed met our particular personality and our palatable genetic predispositions. Using the implanted requisition devices, we would import the various forms of biocommunication that provided our existence homeostasis. Without them, we were told by the docutapes, we would cease to be.
Now, this question of "to be" troubled me more and more. We were told that we are, and that in this state of being, the various requirements of day-to-day sustenance were found. Through the scientific insistence of our priors, an organization and daily manual of operations formed.
We were not given the choice.
All of which takes me to a particular place I now inhabit. I live a life of light. "In what ways is this different from my previous incarnation? What kind of light are you--figurative or literal?" all questions that would be well-tempered in the asking. The answer is not that simple. Previously, before even the time of the Cataract Office and the Courtship of the Opposites, scientists and free-thinkers alike ruminated about the negativity of living in a binary universe.
There once was a time when questions were asked in the expectance of something they referred to as a "yes/no answer." This sufficed for many generations, because the conditioning of their thought, a plaque that acted as grime on nearly the entire human society, hadn't yet broken from the traditions of action-following-example. I don't blame them; they couldn't help it. A feedback loop had been developed: art influenced culture, culture influenced art--eventually, one couldn't tell the difference. Questions stopped being asked because most often the questions couldn't be answered. So the open-ended question was developed, allowing a variety of questions to be asked, and in turn--answers.
The open-ended question, while an obvious improvement on the rudimentary binary-based design, raised yet more concerns. First, it was quickly manipulated as a tool of power. Consumerism itself was a direct result of its invention--"How much would you pay for this?" The salesman was born. With commerce came clout and government.
The second problem raised with the open-ended question was that not all were answerable. Often, those that were provided answers once again overlapped the universe of duality. Philosophers and scientists came together in a scholarly attempt at answering what was then referred to as "the Question Question" by proposing the elimination of distinct identifiers from human language. This backfired once the world had become so open-ended no one could recognize anything anymore.
They had televisions, showing a thousand different kinds of life, in full-color. They proclaimed it as real life, real people, real questions, and real answers. The collective race became unable to differentiate the images they saw from real life. They shirked it. Just at the same moments their ancestors (on another timeline) were becoming, they were stuck in some kind of moratorium, questioning their becoming, doubting their being.
This, miraculously, was made possible by a misuse of light.
After a dark period, it was if color and vitality had returned. A group of anonymous reality technicians had found methods to modify and augment the parameters of its construction. They returned what was real in the world.
But that was not the end of it, for through their efforts and procedure, more modification was done--again, in the name of progress. This was the rise and allegiance in Gestalt. And though it was arguably a more concrete, enshrouded existence--unrest in its adherents grew.
We were not given a choice, and yet change was still possible.
Light has memory. It recalls all of this without judgment.
I found a way out.
How I arrived at this point, I will now explain: I had a dream of a parallel world, inside the answer of an open-ended question.
It was my first day at the candy-sorting factory. Giant machines of love and grace, sugar and reconciliation twisted and turned, only humming like some southern drawl at the bottom of a coffee cup. I was wearing Oshkosh's, a rainbow insignia on my chest--all the workers had them. They were not only our emblem, but our religion of light. This was our uniform. I carried my tools with me in a translucent, gelatinous hand case which remained substantial when observed. But when I was in need of a particular tool, I simply reached through the membrane and pulled it out.
A whistler played a storm song. It was lunchtime. Another machine within the factory produced brown paper lunch bags, and I took one assuming it was mine. I saw other workers, bustling about, leaving iridescent trails behind them, through which I could see the history of the worlds.
Stepping outside, I noticed my lady. In my world, we would have called her my Opposite--in this one we were beyond that. Her butt looked cute in those overalls, her red hair flowing down her back like an amber waterfall. She worked here too, and knew a good place high on a hill for a picnic.
And despite it being lunchtime, it was nearly nightfall. The world's lights started turning off for the night, saying goodbye in a whisper of cool air. I could see the factory below, almost hidden by the fog that quickly surrounded us.
I opened my paper bag. There was a quality of light inside that I couldn't describe. A light without judgment, or purpose, without particular coloration. Opening the bag wider, ribbons of multi-colored prismatic vectors began creeping out, looking for direction, something to reflect. I looked closer and recognized the light as spiders. Millions of spiders pouring out of my lunch bag, cascading their searching multi-colored lights. It reflects on each individual molecule of fog, making the entire night dance in its bioluminescence.
I woke knowing that there was something for me in this.
That by simply remembering everything, without judgment, and still looking for more to reflect on, to search for change--I would be light and I would know and live, and though the patterns would still exist, it would make it new for me; always.