Last night walking my dog into town I had this strange sense of passing through a Hollywood movie lot. The façade of the storefronts seemed to be just that, as if the small town where I live had contracted further still by losing a dimension. Just beyond the storefronts, I could sense, lay another world, another plane of reality quite different from what presents itself along Main Street here in Mayberry RFD. In truth, only a few hundred feet behind the storefronts, the gravel lots give way to pasture overrun with weeds.
So much of what we know of the world we learn from the various media we consume. Our sense of what’s real and what’s not is itself entirely constructed by the thousands of books, movies and TV shows that flit before our eyes. Common sense tells us there’s a difference between stage and reality when in truth there’s not all that much because our sense of both has been similarly contrived by the very same means. All the world being a stage is no mere figure of speech but a metaphor that conveys an extremely radical and much deeper meaning about the experience of being human. How like players on the stage we are never quite ourselves yet always hungering for more love and applause.