I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge– myth is more potent than history– dreams are more powerful than facts– hope always triumphs over experience– laughter is the cure for grief– love is stronger than death.
Among the concepts that Robert mentions above, which have always been presented to us as the most important things to develop? I know that especially in the realm of education, I’ve been taught to focus on knowledge, history, and facts. I’ve been taught to learn from experience rather than to hope that things can be different from the ways that I’ve experienced them. I’ve been taught that it’s inappropriate to laugh at a funeral or to rejoice that another person has moved on the the next stage in our eternal existence. I’ve been taught that death is final, and that a person ceases to exist simply because his or her body has given out.
But have I defined these ideas as important on my own terms, or is that just “the way things are”? Have my teachers taught me facts and history because they thought that’s what was best for me as a human being, or was that what they were supposed to teach?
When I dream and imagine, my world becomes richer by far. But that frightens some people, who try to warn me against “living in a dream world.” “It can only bring harm,” they say, but I suspect that they say that because they’ve never tried it themselves; or because they have tried it and it frightened them.
John Lennon’s song “Imagine” is a beautiful examination of some things that we can imagine that can bring peace to our hearts. If I “imagine all the people, living life in peace,” that’s okay even if people aren’t living that way. Perhaps if enough of us spend enough time imagining such a thing, eventually it could come to pass.
Questions to ponder:
1. Do you use and value your imagination? What value can our dreams bring to us?
2. How can we “unlearn” some of the values that we’ve assigned to certain things in our lives? Should we unlearn them?
3. Can imagining something strongly enough bring it to pass?
For further thought:
I believe in the imagination. What I cannot see is infinitely more important than what I can see.Duane Michals
Credit: Living Life Fully