We Are Our Mind And Our Mind Is Our Self

After watching David Lynch’s, “Lost Highway”, I thought of Descartes’s quote: “I Think, Therefore I Am.” He claimed the mind and body were two separate entities, because like everything else in this world, the body can only be sensed because there is a mind to sense it.

Our senses deceive us. The thoughts we have when awake can also be experienced when we sleep. I suppose that all the things that have entered into my mind when awake had no more truth than the illusions of my dreams.

But getting back to “Lost Highway”, the protagonist creates alternative realities in his mind to relieve himself of guilt and to help him cope. Each “reality” was real to him. They were cyclical and led him right back to the start.

All along the protagonist’s mind was doubting, perceiving, denying, and imagining. He knew he existed in the created realities because he “thought therefore he existed”. The mind may be confused at times or clear and distinct. We perceive things in our dreams just like when we are awake. It’s all in the mind.

In “Lost Highway”, the main character, when confronted with unsavory aspects of his life, decided to create self-consoling but self-deceptive “realities. He had to deceive himself to make his existence bearable. His “realities” were a lie to disguise unbearable truths.

This deception happens a lot in real life.


The other night I had a dream that was so realistic that I felt I existed in it. Yet none of it was true. Sometimes we all feel that way about our own reality, how much of it is true?

When I wake up each morning, I’m hazy and disoriented, but then I focus on the bedroom and my self gets re-assembled in my mind, which is my first-person observer of reality inhabiting my body.

Then slowly my mind awakes and starts thinking and then my self is complete. I am again a witness of my world and the bearer of my consciousness and identity.

How wonderful the mind is. I truly believe:

“I Think, Therefore I Am.”

My Summer Night’s Dream

It has been said that there are two Dream scenarios, the dream of being awake in the Real world and the other form of dream when you are asleep. This dream that I had made me think about the difficulty of distinguishing sleep dreaming from wakefulness, fantasy from reality. I also remembered what Freud said:

“All dreams are wish fulfillment.”


It was hot and humid that night, my window was open wide to catch any wandering breeze. I only had a thin sheet over my body when I fell asleep…

I was in a forest, the trees were tall and close together. Their branches seemed like arms swaying in the wind and the lower ones would swing down and almost grab me. I started walking fast, the leaves were crunching and the soil was damp under my bare feet.

The whispering wind seemed to be talking to me.

“Writer Dave, oh Writer Dave, why isn’t your novel a best-seller?”

I was turning around and around trying to hear where the voice was coming from. I got so dizzy that I fell on the ground looking up at the stars.

My recent novel, “The Becoming”, came to mind. Fifty copies had been sold but now it seemed like it stopped selling. I had thought the novel was my best work up to now. But now, I was frustrated with the low results.

I closed my eyes, and then a woman’s voice came from behind me.

“Hello, Writer Dave.”

I open my eyes and there was a beautiful woman standing over me! She wore a gossamer dress that rippled in the breeze. Her hair was long and golden, falling over her chest. Her face was milky white, her eyes emerald green and her lips crimson.

This woman was gorgeous, like a goddess brought to life. Her eyes were sparkling like the stars in the night sky.

“Who are you?” I mumbled.

“Don’t you know me? I’m Mary, your publisher.”

I only met my publisher once and I didn’t remember her quite like this.

“What do you want?’

“I’m here to give you some tips on best-selling fiction.”

She then sat down next to me and put my head gently in her lap. Her slender fingers were caressing my temple. She continued:

“To have a best-seller you need clarity and focus on a single idea. You need the novel to bring an issue into clear view.”

“But Mary, my novel does that, I tell the reader that they are “becoming” every day of their life.”

Her fingers circled my lips.

“Relax Dave, I’m just stating the facts. You need writing that provokes, writing to make people think and act.”

“Again Mary, “The Becoming”’ was supposed to provoke my readers to think about change and their “becoming.”

Mary smiled and continued:

“Did you have a fast pace and excitement in your writing?’

“Yes, I did. I tried to inject enthusiasm into my readers.”

“Well, Writer Dave, if you did all that, you should have a best-seller.”

I told Mary, my girlfriend wouldn’t even consider marrying me if my novel wasn’t a hit.

“Dave, she’s not worth worrying about. She just wants money and fame to bask in.”

I thought about that as an owl whizzed past my head.

Then as fast as Mary appeared she was gone.


One of the trees started moving toward me. It was a giant in the form of a tree. Can you imagine, foliage for a head, branches for arms and roots for legs?

“Is that you, Writer Dave?” he said in a booming voice.

“Who are you?” I stuttered.

“I’m your public, your readers.”

“What do you want?”

“Your public want to know: Why should they buy your novel?”

Many voices were yelling this sentence, over and over. It frightened me!

“Why should we buy your novel? Why should we buy your novel?”

Then, after a few minutes, things quieted down.


“Hello, Writer Dave.” It was an angelic voice coming from somewhere.

The next thing I knew a beautiful woman with wings and flowers in her hair and a long flowing white robe was sitting in the tree above me.

“I’m Blossom, your fairy, but I warn you I’m mischievous.”

“Can you help me get a best-selling novel?”

“I’m in possession of a magic potion that might help. I was going to give the potion to your public giant, which would make people love your novel and buy it in great amounts. But I thought I’d have some fun first. So I gave some to Mary, your publisher.”

“So that’s why she was so loving toward me.”

“I’m sorry, Dave, but I told you I was mischievous. I will, now, give some to your public giant.”


A mist came rolling in and I found myself back with my head in Mary’s lap!

“Dave, I’m here to tell you that your novel has sold over one thousand copies in the last month. You’re on the way to becoming a best-selling novelist.”


I woke up in a cold sweat. A voice in my head whispered:

“What is dreamed may prove REAL and what seems REAL may be just a dream.”

You Own Your Life

“I want to have some control over my own life. I don’t want to lose my dignity. It’s torment to live with this illness when I can die right now and let death relieve my suffering.”

This was said by a person suffering from dementia, which was slowly taking their personality away.

Someone once said: “Why are many people more appalled by an UNNATURAL form of dying than by an UNNATURAL form of living?”

This is a statement that shows great knowledge and insight. Death comes to us all sooner or later. We all would like it to come without extreme pain and anguish. Often it comes naturally from heart failure, stroke or in our sleep, and it comes suddenly.

But not always. Free-thinkers, people who form their own opinions about subjects instead of accepting what others say, know that sometimes death comes after long periods of pain and loss of dignity. In that case, it’s wise to have a plan of action and, if possible, when one is in fairly good health.

Assisted or unassisted dying or self-deliverance, whatever you call it, it is a deeply personal choice. Death is a private matter. It can quickly end a person’s pain, suffering and low quality of life, allowing them to die with dignity.

The religious argument is that it is against the word and will of God. If you are not religious, that argument means nothing to you.

The other argument is that laws in favor of voluntary euthanasia are the start of a “slippery slope” that leads to practices that aren’t acceptable to the majority of society and to voluntary suicide.

Remember, we are talking about a person’s private, personal choice, it basically only has to do with the individual themselves. A person that believes in dignity in dying demands choice and control at the end of their life.


Ending your life, if you are facing unbearable pain and loss of quality of life with no cure, is the most personal and difficult decision you will ever make.

If you continue to go on, in the above circumstances, you will endure pain and indignity. You will wait for the inevitable end, which may be weeks, months or years away.


Everyone has the right to their choice in this matter without interference from the opinions of others. Religious people have the right to their belief that one’s life belongs to God and only He can take it away. But religious beliefs should not be imposed on others.

Many people believe that their life belongs to them and the laws need to be changed. It seems perverse to block the chance to relieve suffering and loss of quality of life.


Many people with illnesses and dementia, where there is no possibility of cure, choose to die at home on their own terms. Some don’t want to involve others, if possible, they prefer self-deliverance, which is taking their own life to escape suffering by taking a lethal cocktail, for example.

As far as palliative care by a health service goes, there are many horror stories of people dying in hospitals or care homes left hungry and thirsty. Many don’t even get enough pain relief or sufficient help with personal needs such as washing or going to the toilet. In many cases palliative care is inadequate.


Many people want the right to die without unbearable suffering and loss of dignity. Nobody is forcing people to take their own lives, it’s a CHOICE. So please don’t interfere with those who choose to do so.


Journalists and Bias

With the vast amount of information going around the world constantly, I think journalists have a duty to minimize and manage bias as much as possible.

Lets define the word. It’s any inclination or prejudice for or against a person or group in a way that is unfair.

How does the ordinary person see bias? He or she sees bias in a news report when it affects how they see themselves, as a member of a group, their identity or by source.

We judge bias by the Source (who’s reporting it), tabloid or broadsheet, not content.

We make assumptions on the news according to our Identity, our age group, our gender, political preferences, race, nationality and so on.

You read bias into an article by your Group, examples: American, British or Arab—Conservative or Labour—young vs. old—women vs. men.


Types of bias:

Bias by Omission—leaving one side of an argument out of an article.

Bias by Labeling—labeling stories with “expert” or “independent”.

Bias by Spin—reporting one side and making that view look better than another.

Bias by Distortion—news that’s not completely right.


Journalists bend over backwards trying to prove they are Unbiased.

But bias does exist and it invariably is built into the choices that reporters make, when deciding what to leave in or out of an article..

And that news judgment is subjective, it’s hard to discount how you perceive things.

So maybe, some bias is a good thing!

It could make a story more understandable. It could also, prompt an organization or person to right a wrong.

We must remember, the journalist is writing for the public, not the powers that be.

All in all the journalist is making choices on how a bias could help a story or hinder it.


There are also ethics that a journalist should adhere to.

They must defend the freedom of speech and resist efforts to distort information.

It’s a fine line, but a journalist has political and other convictions, like all of us, but they must try to remain neutral and objective.

Both the public and the journalist have to practice Critical Thinking, to spot bias and make sense of what we read and write. They must be able to analyze and interpret what they read and write.


To end on a lighter note:

The first thing I do every morning, when I get up, is look at the newspaper to see if the world is still here!