In the beginning, he slept. When he awoke, he walked about, looking for something to do. He noticed a blank book with a never-ending depth of white paper.
But a deep, intense interest motivated him to continue with the book. So he flipped open to the first page, and began to write the words that he has yet to see.
“Once upon a time …”
In that instant, he created time. He took eternity and divided it into the past, present and future. He created the origination and extinction, the beginning, and the end. He created cause and effect, bringing the history before the story and the future after the story into existence. Eternity, passage, movement all came into being.
And he continued.
“… there was a tiny kingdom where …”
In that instant, he created space. He took infinity and divided it into here, there, and in between. He created differentiation between one point and another. He made the rules of space and decreed that one can only move or exist in such a way. He made up an entire imaginary universe, standing alone by itself.
And he continued.
“… there lived a beautiful princess …”
In that instant, he created story characters in his own image. He wanted to understand himself – to see himself in the mirror he created and is now holding in his mind through the story.
He painted the sights, sounds, feeling, smells, and taste of this world. From this sensory field, he painted like and dislike. From like and dislike, he painted desire and aversion. From desire and aversion, he painted the behavior of the plants, animals and people.
Then as he read, from nowhere, he filled in the faces and bodies of the people, as excitedly as a child coloring a painting for the first time. The eyes, the mouth, the face, the hair, the slender body, the attractive dress – all came into existence among the people of his world.
But that was not enough. He wanted more.
He filled in the minds of the people, first with what they see, then with the desires and aversions triggered, and finally he layered emotions that drove these people into firm action rather than just sitting like stones and trees.
Now these people have desires, they want something. A command emerged from deep within their own heart to fulfill their desires which they obeyed naturally. And they obeyed the implied command to avoid what will stop them from getting what they want. Thus, desire flowered into existence.
He then elaborated on these desires, by adding history. Thus, he created experience – he allowed what that has happened in the past to influence each character’s behavior into the future. He elaborated divergent desire upon desire, constantly building these from the past into the present. He allowed other things like culture and biology to influence and create more desires.
And thus, he painted people into definite characters, each with a different and unique will. The young girl wanted someone who would love her. The young man was interested to succeed his father and become a great lumberjack. The greedy butcher was only interested to get a lot of money so that he can retire early as a rich man who bosses over his servants.
Then, he continued painting the environment. He declared the culture, tradition, superstitions, and beliefs. He declared the political, economic, and religious structures and mentality of the people. He declared the circumstances and situation surrounding each character and each event.
But even as he created, he ensured that the will of the character can be divided into considering many things, but could not pursue all of them at the same time. He refined limits and declared problems. He made it so that his characters will choose, for they have no choice but to choose. Their will, like his, can never be extinguished.
Now that his characters have a choice, he deemed this as a good development. With this stroke, his world was a wonderful place, perfect for the drama to begin developing. And the characters are now living creatures, all fully capable of life, just like himself.
He continued, and this time, he made it possible for his characters to have their will thwarted. He put the characters together into his world and let them interact with each other.
The characters began to tell the differences between each other. They began to think, invent concepts and create their own language. They began to separate everything from each other, so that they can easily determine one from another.
Now the characters began to separate themselves from each other, and they came together with people of the same will and same background. They realized that there are “others” who go against their will. When they could not persuade those to change their will, they declared themselves “true” and “right” and the others “false” and “wrong”.
In this instance, good and evil arose, and they inevitably clashed against each other. In the instance the opposites clashed, the victor and the defeated arose. So did the wise and the foolish, the valiant and the meek, the cheerful and the sad, the peaceful and the wrathful. All this arose when the characters began to compare among themselves what they observe happening.
And he deemed this to be a good development, for now the exciting drama can begin.
Thus, he made it such that the lumberjack was killed and the son now has to fend for himself. He made it that the greedy butcher robbed the lumberjack. He made it so that the son escaped and desired strongly to come back to avenge his father when he grew up.
But he also ensured that things do not stay that way. He arranged for situations and other people to try to thwart the will of the protagonists. He arranged impossible situations for the protagonist to escape from and impossible enemies for the protagonist to defeat.
And thus, he created temptation – that which made his characters weak and fallible enough to surrender their will and give up on their true desires. Those who give up to temptation will forget who they are and end up fighting against those who choose to continue.
But for the characters that choose to believe, he created miracles – a very improbable situation where the characters could achieve the impossible. To those who carry forward with their will, he made it inevitable that they achieve the impossible.
The son of the lumberjack will be tempted, but he will not give up. He will be nearly defeated by his enemies but will not die. He will jump across deep valleys with his horse, but he will still live.
One day, he will achieve the impossible but the inevitable. He will avenge his father by killing the greedy butcher who is now impersonating the king of the land. And he will marry the beautiful princess and live happily ever after.
And so, as he read, he dreamt. As he dreamt, he declared. As he declared, the word was made flesh and it came into being. The people were born, lived, and perished. The world revolved on its own laws and rules.
As the people in the story lived their lives believing that the world around them was real. Yes, it was real to them all, for how can pain not be real? How can what we can see, measure and define not be real? How can the world they breathed, moved and interacted with not be real?
But little did they realize that they are part of his creation. Little did they realize that they are but a figment of his dream, a shadow of his powerful imagination.
But this did not concern him, for it was good that people forgot about the larger reality, so that the story can continue. So that the good may defeat the evil. So that the protagonist knows what it is like to be happy from what it is like to be suffering. So that he can get to know himself.
And so, he let everything happen at their leisurely pace without effort on his part, for his creation has truly come alive on its own. It lives by itself, and thus, after writing the seventh chapter, he rested.
“… And so they lived happily ever after. THE END.”
As he finished the story, he saw that it was good. He gave thanks to the book which was his mirror and gave it to the library. He knew that soon, another person will borrow the book to read it too. For who would want to miss such an exciting story?
And upon being read, this imaginary world would once more be created, played and disappear again. Again and again – the cycle of creation, progression and destruction will move. From alpha to omega, forever into eternity.