Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Pondering: Fantasy, daydreaming, hope

Hope imagines. But it imagines things it believes is good for itself. Based on one's knowledge of Scripture or one's own ethics, one's hope can be morally questionable -- but even so it's daydreams are geared toward some wished-for situation.

Despair imagines. But it imagines and meditates on what it fears. Based on one's knowledge and trust (or distrust) of Scripture, the images one meditates on in one's despair is either seen as the only possible future one could dream of (when one finds one's self in a bad situation.)

There is imagining impossibilities that may happen, and imagining improbabilities, and imagining miracles.

Both imagining impossibilities and imagining improbabilities have to do with attempts to heal. But imagining impossibilites involve back-tracking -- daydreaming about the past, woulda-coulda-shoulda-ing. In those daydreams, we often are attempting to heal our past soul wounds and so it's vain imaginings.  We are often not our own age, and yet we somehow are in the current era/year...which is always a bad sign. So daydreaming of being our twenty year old selves in 2013 with some famous young hottie.....nah, not gonna happen.

Imagining improbabilities is a step higher toward true hope. We are at least in the present, we are our own age, we are doing wonderful things or engaging with wonderful people. But the things, the people are slightly improbable...and again there is a need to heal our wounded soul. Thus we may daydream about being our real age but we put ourselves in such improbable situations. If our souls and spirits are being healed by imagining ourselves with some rich,powerful, famous person....well chances are this is not a true hope.

Imagining miracles. Well, this is true hope. It is setting the mind on the thing desired, imagining a good outcome based on a promise of God. This is the hardest daydream to enter because we have to know Scripture, we have to imagine Jesus or some holy Biblical person doing the miracle, and then we have to imagine God in us (the hope of glory) or some other Christian doing the miracle. Or we can just imagine a sovereign move of God without any human agency.

This kind of daydreaming is also difficult because when we reach a point in life where we need a miracle, our minds have often already become washed with negative images. So we're battling the vain negtive images the doctors, memory, time or habit have put in our minds and hearts...while at the same time trying to trust God's word and the images the Scripture wants to put into our minds. Plus, our daydreaming habits have usually not been creative or hopeful. So it's difficult to picture good things happening.

True hope is not vain or depressing or impossible imaginations; it is hope of salvation. I'm not saying our thoughts create our reality. Because God is able to give us more than we are able to ask or wish. I'm saying that we should at least keep tabs on our wishing. We should at least put as much conscious effort into imagining what life will be like when (not what life might be like if) our prayers come true. We should at least consciously imagine the looked-for end with the same gusto that we put into a sexual fantasy. We should walk around in our future hope knowing every nook and corner of it.

So there I was...realizing I am age 54. This means ...many of the daydreams and fantasies I have been indulging in for the past 34 years must now be put to rest. There is really no way that many of these fantasies will come true. Rich Korean young hottie will not arrive and bring my younger self or my current self happiness. But really, these daydreams are my second homes. What to do with them? Make stories out of them. I know those worlds so well. And in letting go of them and training my mind to lose past them...I can have my cake and eat it too. My mind will let them go but they will forever be engraved in story form.

Will see how it works. Sad...but some dreams have to be let go. 
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