There’s an old saying. Old but true. Inviolably true.
It comes from the time, not so long ago really, when humankind lived in the world of reality.
Don’t get me started on the “nothing is real” bit, I know all about that, and I’m not talking about that type of thing but the kind of reality where if you knock your head against it, it will bloody well hurt, and if you do that enough, it will eventually kill you and probably, maybe, send you to one of the other possible realities or even back to this one, for another go.
We don’t, most of us, of course, live there (that world of reality) any more. Well not for the last 50-60 years anyway (though it is still within living memory of some of us). Or perhaps more precisely, we have convinced ourselves in our tiny, shrunken, confused, media-infested, TV-ad bewitched, socially disoriented and ambient-babble afflicted, minds, that the Laws of Physics, by which our ancestors were so very severely restricted and subject to, no longer apply to us.
No, we honestly believe that (and this is the old saying I am talking about)-
“We can have our cake, and eat it too”.
We can do anything that we want – in our minds. Mind you, we have always been able to do that – in our minds. But something has developed in our modern psyche, perhaps because we have been so successful at progressing our capabilities so strongly and so quickly, that it has occurred to us that at some point in our progress we will be able to do whatever we want, unrestricted and unrestrained by the normal rules that govern what we refer to as reality.
And so, we live our lives on that basis. We know (or believe) that somehow, whether it be by the act of some all-powerful deity, some beneficent universal force or entity, through the exercise of our own innately magnificent intelligence and ingenuity, by divine right, or simply just dumb good luck, fate or fortune, that the never-failing cornucopia of self-replenishing cake will be ours to enjoy. For ever, and a day.
At some stage in my life I dreamed (or was it something I saw on television?) that I possessed a never ending, never emptying, packet of Tim-Tams (google it – I have no intention of supplying a link for those things). Every time a Tim-Tam chocolate covered biscuit was removed from the packet, it was magically replaced by another.
That philosophical idea has, today, become something of an axiom of modern life, whether generally recognised as such, or not:
No matter how much cake we eat, we will always still have a complete cake from which we can keep eating.
Now I ask you, do you really believe that? Or is it something that you just accept because everybody else seems to do that, and you are sure that somebody, somewhere, will find a way to make it happen, soon enough? So, you will just keep on eating the cake, because… well… what harm can it do?
Me? Well, I’m probably just as tied into cake eating as you are (though I try to take only small bites and as infrequently as I can), but I fully know, without a shadow of a doubt, that that cake we are all so gleefully chewing on, is eventually going to run out until only a few crumbs remain. Nobody is going to defy the Laws of Physics and Mathematics (in this world anyway) by human technological progress, government decree, or by any other means, to produce a never ending cake-fest for us to keep dipping our snouts into, for as long as we like.
You do know what I am talking about, don’t you?
And, no, it has nothing to do with cake …or Tim-Tams.
We live in a finite world, which, like it or not, believe it or not, is still subject to those pesky, yet fundamental and unalterable, Laws of Physics.