July 15, 2013 www.nomorefakenews.com
Here is another section from my unfinished manuscript, The Magician Awakes.
In this scene, the “speaker” is talking to Jimmy in a cheap hotel room. Jimmy has volunteered to go to FreeTown, which some people call FryTown, because they suspect it’s a prison.
But it isn’t. It’s an offworld colony where men and women seeking a different kind of life are emigrating.
Jimmy and the speaker have already been talking for hours. Jimmy thinks he’s qualified to take his place in the new colony, but the speaker has his doubts, and he expresses them at length in this final wrap-up:
Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy. I keep talking to you, but everything I say disappears. How do you do that? You’re a black hole.
It’s as if you’re folding time back in on itself, Jim. Do you really believe there’s nothing new under the sun?
All the ideas worth contemplating have already been hashed over, and it’s just a matter of going Spiritual Shopping at the great mall?
Most people live in the past, Jim, whether they admit it or not. So they guard it. They patrol it with weapons loaded.
New ideas are never preordained. That’s a hard one for people to swallow, Jimmy. They enjoy thinking about a universal library that contains all thoughts. Or an ideal invisible universe that’s already there. All laid out. Is that what you believe in?
They prefer it to the notion that something can come from nothing.
But nothing is exactly where something comes from, Jim.
There is no such thing as smooth cause-and-effect from the past to the present. That’s a fairy tale. There are always gaps, Jimmy. In our best moments, we live in the gaps.
People want to plug up the nothing and pave it over with explanations. Hundreds, thousands, millions of explanations.
God is a favorite. He created us with free will but he didn’t want us to create anything new? Is that how you think it really works, Jimmy? I don’t even know whether you believe in God, Jim, but if you do, I bet you have a pretty strange idea about who he is.
You think he made everything there was to make all at once, and then he stopped, and there we were, with freedom, but everything was already laid out? How do you square that, Jim?
If you want to describe the nothing from which something comes, you could do a lot worse than “invention.”
“Nothing new” equals slavery.
The fear of new ideas is the fear of inventing.
The universe isn’t a mother or father, Jimmy. No. It isn’t whispering instructions in our ears.
The universe is “deciding whether things are meant to be?” Are you kidding, Jim? Where did you get that one from? A New Age church on Sunday? From a guy in a suit that cost five grand who has a thousand-yard stare and a smile plastered on his face?
There’s a Great Plan? You mean, Jim, the Plan blots out all your freedom and you’re just a machine trying to figure out what your programming is so you can follow it? Is that your best shot?
Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy.
What am I going to do with you?
You’re walking around the dinner table looking at the food and you’re reaching out to put something on your plate, and then you’re drawing back. You’re hungry but you’re not.
You’re doing yes, no, and maybe. You’re looking for a way in and a way out.
You want to punch a time clock but you want to be free.
Let’s say you’re free right now. You’d have to ask yourself, what is freedom for?
What are you going to do with it?
Go back to the past, where everything is already settled? Is that what you want?
Imagine the whole world living in the past, moving along like one big machine, all the parts coordinated. Switch a few parts here, switch a few there. People trying to figure out what to do with their freedom inside the machine. That doesn’t sound realistic, does it, Jim?
In the middle of that craziness, somebody stands up and says he has the most important ideas to share. He says they’re time-tested and wonderful. But he’s in the machine, too.
People believe in him, and they start oiling parts and oiling themselves, and changing locations here and there. They want a better machine.
Who is going to support this new “prophet?” The people who own the machine. That’s who. But here’s the thing. The people who own the machine are inside it, too. They just don’t know it.
Could you dream up a more ridiculous situation?
I know some people believe the men who own the machine are outside it, but they aren’t. If they were really free (outside), they wouldn’t be stepping on everybody’s head. They’d be doing something else. Trust me.
Freedom is real. If you take it. It feels so good, you wouldn’t use it to crush people. Not in a million years.
You wouldn’t do that with real freedom.
You know, Jim, we started with a lot of people like you in FreeTown. And it didn’t work out. We made mistakes.
We had people who said they wanted freedom, but when they arrived at the colony, a strange thing happened. They went back to living the lives they had before.
We told them FreeTown wasn’t the past, but they didn’t understand. They were all about the principle of freedom, like you are, but inside them something else was going on.
They were putting themselves together like androids.
Look, Jimmy, we’re not going to turn you down. We’ll book your passage. But we have a way station. You’ll stop there for three years first. Three years.
The way station’s a special place. Some people call it Limbo, but that’s ridiculous. It’s anything but. But it is where you make your bones if you can.
It’s stupidly simple, when you come right down to it. No frills. No jive. No symbolism or hocus-pocus. No ritual.
It’s not a new kind of reality. It’s not a place that does something to you. You do something to it. Which is the whole point, if you’ve been listening to anything I’ve been saying.
We call the way station by its proper name. The House of Clay.
You’ll live in a little apartment over a studio. The place is all yours.
The studio has five thousand pounds of clay. Your job is to work the clay. Make anything you want from it. Use all of it. Make lots of things.
No rules. No guidelines. We don’t care what you make.
After three years of doing that every day, you’ll go to FreeTown.
We’re betting on the fact that…
Well, I don’t have to spell it out. I think you get it.
That’s the deal. Are you willing to take it?
Everybody who lives in FreeTown has been through the House of Clay. We’ve all done it. See, Jimmy, it’s one thing to say you want out of this system and you want freedom, but it’s another thing to go to a place where freedom actually exists and not screw it up.
You have to start inventing, Jimmy.
That’s what freedom is for.
Not just thinking about it. Doing it.
Inventing new realities.
Are you up for that?
We’re giving you the chance, if you want to take it.
Or go back to sleep, curl up in the bed you call freedom. Sleep in the past where nothing is new.
The author of two explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED and EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free emails at www.nomorefakenews.com