“The nature of illusion is that it’s designed to make you feel good. About yourself, about your country, about where you’re going – in that sense it functions like a drug. Those who question that illusion are challenged not so much for the veracity of what they say, but for puncturing those feelings.”– Chris Hedges
In many ways our lives are filled with illusions. We tell ourselves stories that help us justify the actions we take and the beliefs we have. Often those stories are shared with others. Teams and organisations have stories and illusions we buy into. We have to have a smartphone. We must collect as much data as possible. And so on. Illusions are often based on an element of truth and a lot of fear.
So when our illusions pop and our stories questioned, is our reaction about the new insight or about the ‘puncturing [of] those feelings’ as Hedges mentioned above.
Perhaps it’s worth considering, especially when facing change or challenge.
Photo by Randy Jacob
I hear what you’re saying, Amos. And the willingness to have our story questioned without defensiveness is important. But is every story we tell ourselves an illusion? Do they only justify what we’ve done, or do they remind ourselves of what we are supposed to be doing; of who we are and what we exist to contribute?
Hi Martin – thanks for your comment. I’d answer ‘yes’ to all your questions above. Stories are powerful and play a big role in our lives, and they are partly ‘factual’ and partly ‘illusions’, however this doesn’t make them any less ‘true’.