Chapter 4: The Deer and The Boy | The Origins of Our Inner Will
In this chapter, I’ll admit that I’ve left some parts out that felt a bit personal…and weird. I felt the need to provide some level of transparency with this project on when I make choices, such as this.
But, in this chapter, I had a recurring dream of a deer…and then I would use that recurring dream during meditative active imagination to see what characters, conversations, and thoughts would come out. And below are some of them…I hope you enjoy it!
I found myself in a small cottage upon a mountain. A knock on the door altered my attention. I open the door to find myself face to face with a large deer; a deer seemingly half alive and half dead, as its face appears fully alive, but various parts of its body were slowly decaying…
Beyond the deer was the endless snowy mountainside, with various small houses scattered in the distance.
I fear being called crazy. I can hear all of you in my mind, jostling for position at times. And then I think...this is the thinking of a crazy person. I'm going crazy. But I cannot deny the existence of these 'characters' existence within my mind, as I think the idea of a cohesive central self is mostly false, right?
The perceived central self that takes control is just that, one that is perceived. It's just that I'm scared and fearful; part of it is my desire and plan to share much of these thoughts; I see these inner thoughts, the monologues with the self as a vulnerability that we need more of in this world...
Or so I tell myself.
Fletch: Well, isn't that very self-aggrandizing of you. The very aggrandizing you judge me for.
It might be. I wonder that, within the back of my mind, in every moment, with every fiber of my being, with every act through my perceived self that comes about—that feels...arrogant. And that is you, Fletch, arrogance.
Just as you professed my self-aggrandizing, what arrogance for you to assume my inauthenticity through the aggrandizing of the created authentic? What even is the authentic version of me? Every time I think I've found that version of myself, it dies. It becomes moldy; it feels fake.
So, I force myself to construct a new; to change, to create new relationships, to find a new hobby, to find a new interest, new, new, and more new for good measure.
Is the desire for the new a retreading of an 'other' inner desire for finding something perceived as deeper?
As though creating something new will bring something deeper about me.
Part of me wonders if this is actually healthy, as change is good right? Change is necessary. So, we are told. But I also wonder, do I seek change for change's sake? We often associate addiction with substances, yet when you think about it, addiction can come in the form of many things we encounter in life...change being one of them. When is enough, enough?
I've come to realize this desire for a changing self means I struggle to make peace with the self at any time, as the obsessions with the movement of the self becomes a version of the self.
If I never take a moment to be somebody, how can I ever live as someone?
*My mind finds itself fixated upon the entryway with the deer once again. Yes, the deer started talking.*
The Deer: We are always here moving the levers. You might not be aware of it, but we are always here.
I'm not sure what you mean?
The Deer: We have thoughts come into our minds, and we wonder where they came from, right?
Yes, I follow.
The Deer: So, why is it madness to begin recognizing the origin of those thoughts within ourselves, and allowing them to have a life of their own? Does allowing them to have a life of their own make it easier to identify them? Does this then make it easier to identify and then process our own inner madness?
Levers, huh? This feels like a childish explanation for the inner working of my psyche. Ah! But there it is again, a fixation on cleverness within my presentation. The desire to formulate these thoughts in a way to impress; to demonstrate some resemblance of mystical prose, instead of simply, presenting them as they come; presenting them as the vision-based journal entry into the active imagination that they are...
The Deer: The dialogue you create is a form of play. It is a way to explore the inner workings of your mind, and in doing so, you might come to some understanding of yourself that you didn't have before.
Yes, I see that. And I also wonder if, in a way, this is a way of seeking connection with others, as though, by sharing these thoughts, I am inviting others into my inner world; into the characters and conversations that take place within my mind.
The Deer: There might be some truth to that. But ultimately, it is up to you what you do with these thoughts and visions.
I'm choosing to do this!
Unknown voice: Who is choosing?
I've realized it's not even my desire for some inner individuation, and maybe this is wrong of me. I've realized I do not need those 'ah-ha' moments, as those are merely a bonus. I simply enjoy the process...
The process of creation.
The process of feeling, seeing, and perceiving the inner workings of my psyche. In the oddest way, it makes me feel relatable to those I encounter every day.
*My mind went silent for a moment. All the creatures disappeared for a time. And then, explosions on the mountainside overwhelmed everything around me. The large boulders and rocks began covering the sky after being exploded from the mountain. They covered the houses and disrupted the calmness of the snow-covered mountain.*
What do you have to say? What do you have to say? Why won't you talk to me?
Is any of this true?
*The deer reappeared in front of me while I was in the cottage. However, a dream-like state overwhelmed my mind, as a tiny doorway appeared on the ground beneath the deer, and a young boy walked out. This boy was short, dark hair, but appeared almost sickly and malnourished.*