I recently saw the new movie, Mr. Holmes, about the one and only Sherlock Holmes and was struck by something Holmes said at one point while talking to a female character. He’s talking to this woman who he’s been hired to investigate, and she confides her unhappiness with her life to him. In response, he contemplates whether it’s better for people to know the truth about things and confront reality, or if it’s better to tell people stories you know they would like to hear. No real conclusion is reached, but putting the question out there got me thinking about my own life. Which would I prefer? And which do I tend to tell other people? Certainly it seems easier to believe in a story and think of it as true, and I’m wondering if perhaps there’s nothing wrong with doing so. Whether one accepts reality or lives within a story, either one becomes reality for that person. So if one does live within a story, what harm does it really do, because it’s still real to that person? As long as doing so doesn’t harm oneself or others, it could be perfectly acceptable. Don’t we all indulge in the in stories anyway? It’s called daydreaming. I myself find myself fluctuating between stories in my head and the reality that I’m confronted with, and it seems to me like we have to reflect on stories to a certain extent just to put up with the reality that surrounds us. So perhaps it’s not either/or, but the necessity for both in order to carry on.
Tag Archives: reality
I think we create worlds and ideas for ourselves that are not always real and connected to reality, but what does it matter if they are real to us? Why can’t we create our own ideas for what the world is and means to us? I mean, I don’t see anything wrong with that, and whether or not our ideas bear meaning in the real world is irrelevant if they are real to us. Some may call this delusional, and perhaps it is, but it can also mean that the world is simply perceived uniquely by each individual and one can place an original lens on the world that gives it meaning to that person.
It’s interesting how much time people spend talking about movies even though they’re not real. But I suppose this applies to literature and TV shows as well. But there’s something about the movies and how you can hear the rumblings of people sharing their opinions at the end of a film as the credits start rolling and the lights come on. Growing up, I vividly remember my parents and I going out to dinner after the movies and spending a majority of the dinner talking about the movie we just saw. It’s interesting to hear different perspectives from everyone and how thoughts about a movie come to you little by little, so there is always something else to say about it.
Movies represent life. We can see so much of ourselves in them, and not only us but others as well. This is what makes them seem so real to us even though they are completely fictionalized. They are, of course, based upon life as many of them represent true stories, but the way in which those stories are captured and put into a movie format is created and stylized. Movies that are based on true events are not organic, but are thoughtfully produced in every aspect from the sequence of the plot, to the characters, to the soundtrack, to the costumes, etc. Movies, even those based on true events, transport us to a different time and place, but are still connected to reality and that is why we can see ourselves in them so vividly.
We all have fantasies about what we want to do in life. But the question is, how do we decipher a fantasy from what we want to turn into reality? I’ve often thought about different things that I would like to do, like teach English abroad, make movies, be an interior designer…but I can’t tell if these are things I would actually do, or if I just like to think about them. What propels one to actually carry out an idea rather than just think of it as a fantasy? I think it takes a great deal of perseverance to carry out what you actually want to do. Sometimes it’s easier to settle for something that you might not like quite as much, but is still somewhat enjoyable.
Just because we may think of things in a certain way does not mean that that is the way they are. We often skew our perception of certain things that might be sad into a positive perspective to avoid feeling down about them. But this does not change the way things actually are. Conversely, we may think of things that are perfectly ok in the world in a negative way when really they are not. So how can we know if how we think of things is as they are, or if they have an entirely separate identity independent of our thoughts of them? I think it is rather difficult to truly know the distinction, and sometimes the difference can become blurred. So, even when we think we’re ok and things in the world are ok, they may very well not be.