Making bubbles

Existence is a bubble.

It feels like all this is real, tangible, holdable, feelabale, touchable. But the moment you stop thinking, stop looking for clues and confirmation, stop the ferris wheel of analysis constantly going on in your mind, the illusion drops, and it is all reduced to the transparent, filmy surface of a bubble.

Delicate, transient, fragile. Which will burst any minute. Which needs to be cherished quickly, before it is gone.

My loved ones confide their fears to me, their doubts about what’s going to happen, their despair over something someone said, their anger over perceived injustices, their insecurities about not being loved enough, their guilts about not being able to love enough, their sorrow at being ‘incomplete’, their pain at being rejected, their joy at an accomplishment, their euphoria at a victory, their hurt at being left behind.

I do it too. I get caught up in the daily motions of life — managing the bank accounts, the credit card bills, researching for a new car, coordinating with the driver to pick up the kids from a birthday party, paying the rent, buying the groceries, coordinating with writers and photographers, walking the dogs, making tiffins early morning, bringing out magazines — and I get carried away that all this is real.

Then, an unexpected silence descends on the house — everyone is asleep, even the dogs at my feet, it’s early morning, the doorbell isn’t ringing, the bank has just pinged about an unexpected income right when I needed some money to be paid, the pigeons go quiet. And it suddenly hits me how transient all this is. One blink — one phone call, one newspaper story, one lifetime — and it’s all gone. What is this job, this house, these belongings, even these relationships, but a bubble? Created out of nothing, dissolving into nothing? Leaving behind just a memory of their existence.

Who is to prove we exist but other people — their perception and their memories? Together, we all affirm the other. Together, we create a certain agreement on what reality is. On what our history is, on what our present is, on what we think our future should be. On what the ‘rules’ are, on what humanity is all about, what is right and wrong.

But this reality is subjective. There are as many worlds as there are living beings. Each one’s world is unique and different from the others. Viewpoints decide destinies.

What then is the truth? Is there any such thing? As Ramana Maharshi asks, Who am I? Really, who am I?

If this existence is a bubble, who am I, and what am I doing here? In answer, a great silence welcomes me home.


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