What Happens In Your Head When You Close Your Eyes And Think About Living?

Artwork by Andara Sánchez

Artwork by Andara Sánchez

If I do it in the middle of the day in a social period of my life, I think in words, and feel myself as a part of my social circle, which quickly transforms into a bigger web, with all the other living human beings. In a matter of split seconds, the dead, the trees, the animals, the myths join the picture which sometimes looks like a starry sky, sometimes like infinite number of intertwined circles on a never-ending canvas.

If I am happy, I don’t even think about where I am in these pictures. I just appreciate life by and large.

But if I am at a dark point of my life, I start looking for myself, where I stand. It’s not easy at all, to spot myself in these images of infinity I myself had created few seconds ago. And when I do, I don’t really feel comfortable there. So I open my eyes and do something to put myself in a simpler context. I talk to the first person I see, go on Facebook, light a cigarette or watch a Turkish soap. In a few moments I forget about the jammed picture of the universe and my thoughts about living and existence.

When I do it on an isolated day, like in the middle of the meditation camp under the wow of noble silence or when I have been too lazy to leave my room for the whole day or for the last few days, I skip the words and even the images. I feel myself as a part of the mass energy that fuels the universe. I don’t think about existence as myself, but instead I feel like I could as well be a cell of an ant chilling on a leaf of a giant tree, the ghost of Cleopatra, or the unborn child of the lady I saw in my dream the other day. My memories join the process one by one. I think of the guy I saw months ago, who was walking in Grafton Street in Dublin, holding a pineapple in his hands looking very very sad. I wonder why I think about such a random memory. And I come to the conclusion that I do it because we are all the same. I picture myself with the pineapple, in Dublin or in Berlin, and how easy it is to do it fascinates me every time.

If I stay on my own, with my eyes closed, perfect, “I am he as you are he as you are me And we are all together”.

However, unfortunately, I am not in a strawberry-field-like Heaven like Lennon, so once I get back to the real world, once I open my eyes I stand face to face with people who desperately look for differences to put themselves in context or circles that don’t let others in for one reason or another. And sooner or later, I start forgetting how I felt about life when I closed my eyes and develop feelings that are not so nice, which turn into thoughts and worse, words sometimes.

Yes, I do it too. I am not an empathy champion or a hippie who is always happy. I am a human being with weaknesses and some evil inside, for sure. Sometimes my lazy nature tricks me into blaming others for my own misery or getting into a circle and enjoy being different a little too much.

But I try my best to remind myself of the pineapple case, not because I am a saint, but because I need to be a part of something that is nicer, around people who are friendlier.

According to science, my mirror neurons need to see happy people around to be happy. It’s as simple as that. When I close my eyes right after I think of this fact, the starry sky or the never-ending canvas shrink into neurons in my mind. I guess, that’s what has been going on all along, ha?

So because of this very scientific reason and maybe also because I have too much free time on my hands these days, I’ve recently started working on a project. Project: Relax Assholes, Being Nice Doesn’t Hurt That Much. It’s hard to be nice with grit when most people don’t really want you to be nice. I guess it intimidates them because then they feel like they have to be nice too and being nice means being open. And being open means being vulnerable to some. So most of them don’t take their shields down just like that. But if you wait until they do, and take the counter attacks of meanness with patience, you have a chance of hearing something nice from every asshole and hope that they’ve heard themselves being nice too.

Last week, at a club, after sunrise, a guy I was telling how hard this project can get sometimes to said; “You’re not superman girl, you need to relax.” He was right, very right, I am not superman, not at all. I am more of a Lois Lane, maybe, who just wants people to be happier, the world to be safer, and writes with the hope of making people see that these things are not impossible.

Anonymously submitted to ArtParasites