It’s a scary notion, so don’t try this at home. I shamefully admit to frequently trying out this form of self-abuse, but the outcome of these thought experiments is always the same.
Lewis Carroll would be proud, and confused, too!
What if you were to chase a rabbit down a rabbit hole, only to find more rabbit holes inside? What if you continued chasing the rabbit further into more rabbit holes and burrows, and weren’t able to find out where the rabbit really lives? Worse, what if you realize that You, the observer, have now turned into a rabbit.
Now look what you’ve done!?! You are lost in this confusing maze and there is no "The End" to this maze? An eternally lost rabbit, that what you are now. Didn’t you read the part in the beginning that said “don’t try this at home”!? Jeez!
Who the heck wrote THAT?
I write differently, and I know that. Often at 33,000 ft above the Atlantic Ocean, I give in to the urge to conduct silly thought experiments. Every now and then, I read all the things that I have written and I marvel. I marvel about the poetry in the words, the depth of perception, and the pain and humor in the notes. This invariably leads me to wonder – who the hell wrote all these things? Where are these thoughts coming from?
Chasing Parasitic Thought Rabbits
So I chase all these thoughts to their source. I find more thoughts that gave birth to these written thoughts. I chase those thoughts then, only to find more thoughts. Strangely, some of these thoughts are parasitic – in the sense that I didn’t know they lived in my head (if, that is, ideas live in people’s heads at all) until I had written them down. Some of the symmetry that comes out in the notes was as much a surprise to me as it is, perhaps, to you. On further reflection, I see two things – (1) that’s who I am, and (2) that’s how every artist is.
The scary part of this experiment is that I could follow all my thought down to their source, and find more thoughts and ideas behind them. It’s very clear that my sense of “Me” is nothing but a messy and massive collection of thoughts, all of whom have no source except other thoughts.
I am a thought rabbit, and there’s no “The End” to this maze of thoughts. There’s no base to me – my consciousness – except other thoughts. The very thought is at once liberating and frightening.
Tuning into "The Channel"
The second realization is that almost all artists come up with new ideas that surprise themselves. Many holy books are written by Prophets who were “merely channeling a higher power”. All new art too comes from people who are merely channeling “their” emergent ideas.
So, are you thinking what you’re thinking?