Escapism – Real or Imagination?
It has been said so many times that prison guards [now called correctional officers] are the only people who hate the word ‘escapism. However, when you really think about it, more people engage in the act of escapism than you may realize. In fact, if you truly understand this word, you would say that correctional officer love escapism for the act itself is defined as a way to avoid life’s realities, withdraw from the social factors or pressures and delve into a fantasy world or make believe scenario you can cope in as your imagination guides your desires.
As a writer, expressionist and critic, I freelance most of my stories based on acts of people who escape responsibilities and duties designed by law and moral structures to keep us safe and protect us from harm or worse. Therefore, I often crossed lines already blurred and allow escapism to be created to step out of these traditional boxes of visions and corruption. Within those stories I used metaphors of fantasies such as dragons, haunted houses, Scorpios, spiders, zombie uprisings and other Armageddon or apocalyptic visions to stream the cultural visions.
Not trying to compete with an Xbox or other visual aid, I wrote stories, articles or books based on shifting knowledge from one mind to another and finding guilty pleasures in telling tales or stories with make believe at the core but always tying it to the reality we face daily. With the use of word processors, computers and visually creative software, we can change reality into a fantasy in a nanosecond and make it all seem to be truth and real in perspective or belief changing attitudes and judgment on how things ought to be done and how they are really to be seen.
Creating a digital fantasy is not only fun and exciting but it is a tool for expressions that create or provoke thinking of the mind other than mainstream ideas or thinking patterns. It is designed to keep us sharp and challenged with a little bit of entertainment and escape from the reality we are facing or living with around us. In other words, it creates a fantastical and escapable flight for a higher purposes and that purpose is learning.
Metaphors create their own reality complete with human perceptions and visions of what the words mean or represent. It encompasses individual knowledge of maps, languages, cultures, history and politics as it facilitates escaping the primary reality for as long as you are engaged in reading the materials presented and written. We all hunger for an escape so writers created those opportunities for others to enjoy and benefit from. In turn, this enables a smooth transition to a superimposed fantasy you can rely on to take you away from primary and secondary world realities that either stresses you, enrages you or burden you with more pressure.
Language is a powerful technology for escape, but it is only as powerful as the literacy of the reader. In other words, you the reader makes this transitional power a useful or effective tool if you engage into the fantasy with all the force and knowledge you possess. Your mind can do more than the words do as it creates an immersive force that makes on screen fantasy even deeper by morphing higher visions or expectations into the subversion or image provided. The possibilities are endless if you dive into a fantasy and read more and watch less on the tube or the computer created games.
In some stories, fantasy worlds are limited only by imaginations. The transformation is individually designed for every individual mind. The more voracious the appetite to escape, the more creative the vision or fantasy becomes. There is an old saying that “the world is made of atoms” but in reality, the world is not made of atoms, it is made of stories about atoms and you can change those atoms inside your mind with creativity and escapism that allows you to see a collection of thoughts the way you want to see them.
Some stories are targeted for specific generations. Social immersion of various generations is tricky and takes talent to digitally generate the appropriate escapism with depth and complexity to match the generation’s expectations. As a writer, we give this talent away for the price of a good read or novel. Herein lies the fact nobody really talks about much these days for as the technology of escape continues to accelerate, we’ve begun to see an eruption of fantasy into reality. A risky disconnection is comparing the reality with the virtual reality in our own physically and artificially blended world.
Perhaps we need to tolerate our fantasy experiences and limit our creativity to maintain a solid pulse or connection to the real world’s reality. As technology advances so does intelligence and singularity as it grows exponentially and culturally around the world. And yet the digital technologies of today are just the latest in a long progression of tools for the expression of the imagination. We are escaping, not into other worlds, but into imagination.
Don’t confuse materialism and idealism. Materialist philosophies contend that reality is composed of matter and energy, and that all observable phenomena, including mind and consciousness, Idealism argues that reality is constructed by the mind. Consciousness does not arise from material interactions, it is universal; and from consciousness arise all of the material phenomena in the universe, including atoms. The world is not made of atoms. It is made of the stories we tell about atoms.
Therefore, in a material philosophy the act of escaping into our imagination is at best temporary based on the materials at hand; on the other side, the same act of imagination can reshape our reality.