I consider myself lucky; I hear voices. Right now as I lay here, I hear them in my head. They’re almost always arguing. When they’re not, they’re silent. They never agree; at least not all of them. Thankfully, I don’t ever need a unanimous decision.
I think everyone has voices like these, but what do I know? Just what the voices tell me. I suspect that many people don’t hear them very well, or they have a different relationship with them than I do. Many people probably think that they are their voices. If they don’t like what they hear they get scared. “What’s wrong with me?” They might wonder, and some voice would answer them. Otherwise, if they like what they hear they might become very proud.
I have so many voices. If I identified with them I wouldn’t know what to do. Who would I be, which, all of them? I guess I am all of them, in some sense, but I’m also none of them. I’m the sea they swim in.
Sometimes I can’t hear the voices. Sometimes a particularly compelling one will be whispering softly in my ear so seductively that it will fill my whole consciousness, and I won’t even know it’s there; like a fish looking for water, my entire perspective shaped by its suggestions.
I’ll finally snap out of it when my body starts to respond. I’ll feel my emotions charging up and my body will jerk towards reaction; angry or snide words often leap to the tip of my tongue, poised to lash out. When I’m at my best I’ll realize it’s not me. The trance will break. I’ll know that I don’t have to do that, hush little voice, and the chorus of other options will chime in.
At least as often, I won’t catch on in time, and in the clutch of that whispering thought, identified, absorbed in the story I’m telling, I will lash out. Thankfully though, even then I’ll come to afterwards, abashed but aware that the voice wasn’t me, wasn’t all of me.
Either way, when that happens I wonder if some people live their whole lives like that; beguiled by their voices, trapped in a whisper without ever realizing it. That’s when I feel lucky. I wonder then about how everything is like those beguiling voices, absorbing our awareness.
I wonder what my pure, unattached awareness would be like, without any of my learned screens distorting my perspective. What does a baby see? Or a blind man? Everything seems to fit into a wider screen. Aren’t even the laws of physics held within something else?
I find myself back in reverie then. Another voice had me, I know. I moved from one screen to the next, like sifting flour. But each realization only lead to another whisper, always flowing through me. Which voice is this?