Friday, November 5, 2010

Living In A Dream

He was walking a tightrope. There was nothing below that he could see. The chasm below stretched to infinity. He spread his arms like a trapeze artist and walked on. However, even after a few minutes, the rope seemed never ending. He could barely see the cliff towards which he was supposed to be moving. He closed his eyes for a moment and took a deep breath.

A flash of light. The scene in front of him transformed. Every single thread making up the rope came undone, yet he seemed to be floating in mid-air. The threads were floating beside him. Then almost immediately, they started weaving themselves back together. It was not a rope that they formed, though. What seemed like numerous carpet pieces drifted in front of him. He was standing on one too. He had to get to the cliff's edge opposite him. He had the strange feeling that there was something important for him over there. He jumped to the mat closest to him. As he jumped in front, the mat he was standing on moved backwards instantaneously because of the backward force. He barely managed to grab the next mat with his hands. As he climbed onto it, it seemed stable. Everything, this world he was in, seemed to defy physics and yet, at the same, converged every law together to make sure he didn't fall into oblivion. As he stood on top of the threadbare mat, he realised something. He could make things change here. He had power. With the power of will, he could move the pieces of carpet wherever he wanted to. He started bringing them closer. It was like a bridge. He walked over it. When the bridge of polyester seemed to come to an end, pieces from the back would fly out and join at his feet to make the road in front of him possible to tread.

He walked on. His destination was clear. There were no more obstacles in his path. The gap was nearly crossed. He reached the edge. Just as he set foot on the hard jagged stone of the cliff, it crumbled beneath his feet. He didn't lose his footing, though. He still had one foot on his sturdy bridge. He got back on it and prepared to jump onto the ledge, far from the opening. He did. He took a great leap of faith. Almost at the cliff edge now, he hit something. Hard. It knocked the wind out of him. Something invisible had blocked his way. He fell. He fell deep into the darkness howling. He was losing breath. He was losing consciousness. His wary eyes faded into the darkness.

Robert woke with a start. He was drenched with cold sweat. He tiredly looked at the table next to him. A syringe lay empty. Almost as empty, as vacant, as his eyes. He needed a stronger dose of Soma®. He could even mix it up with some nicotine patches or galantamine the next time he wanted to sleep. Nothing had gone right for him in his waking real world. Every time he got close to his goals, something or someone always thwarted him. He was a failure, no matter how hard he tried. The drugs could at least give him a world of his own creation, so there might be the slightest chance that he'd finally succeed in his endeavours.

What would it be like to live in a dream world? We could create an entire world according to the way we want it to be. But somehow, dreams are always a projection of our subconscious. The things we go through in life are projected back somehow, maybe exaggerated, in our dreams. We may be powerful, but if we're depressed, we would be the architects if our own destruction. Dreams are powerful. We need them. But it's always open to debate whether we should live in them; because when life gets really harsh, dreams might be all that we have left to sustain our sanity.

PS. Soma®, nicotine patches and galantamine are drugs known to create vivid dreams.


Purba said...

Ah, the greatest puzzle called life. The story had an "Inception" like quality about it. Loved it.

Miss D said...

Incept'ed' haan ? :P
Very thought-provoking and I perfectly agree with the last line.
Pretty much been there, done that.

D2 said...

@Purba : I did think about writing this after I watched the movie. Glad you liked it. :)

D2 said...

@Dimi : yeah you could say that. But I don't think you've "been there done" everything I mentioned in the story! Those drugs are hard to get. :P

Samadrita said...

Okay I agree with Purba di...seems like you're still reeling from the after-effects of Inception? :P
In any case this story highlights a very depressing thought. What if we're forced to live in a fake world of our own creation as a last resort?
Excellently written as always. :-)

D2 said...

@Sammy : Indeed, I am. :D

And yes, though it's depressing, the idea is something that we see all the time. We may not take to drugs to induce dreams but a lot of people rely on something external (fake) to give them a slight amount of peace, so they can escape the harsh reality that they live in.
And thanks, Sammy. :)

Zave said...

There is no easy escape from life mate.
No matter how long you dream, you still need to come back from it someday.
By the way, you've been tagged in Shuffled.

Sonshu said...

How trueeee, its so true. Ive been a dream person always so, this was lovely to read. I used to live in dreams, :D Now not so much! :P

D2 said...

@Zave : Unless the fake workd becomes your one and only reality. There's no escape then.
Thy tag shall be honoured! :D

@Sonshu : Good thing too. :P
And thanks. :)

Sayak Shome said...

Loved it!
I know exactly what Robert was going through. I have felt it.
Dreams. Brains.
Screams. Chains.

I need to polish my vocabulary rigorously to suitably appreciate every post of yours. I am out of adjectives.

D2 said...

@Sayak : Glad you liked it, buddy.
And if you tell me you need to polish YOUR vocabulary to describe this, that's the best compliment you can give me! :)

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