Citizens of Earth:
You know what the lines are. Stay within the lines.
Think within the lines.
Feel confident that what you’re thinking is the best that can be thought.
If you think thoughts that can’t be translated into public spaces, you’re on the outside. You’re careening toward trouble. If you entertain thoughts that aren’t literal, that fly instead, that soar, that sound like strange music, that catapult you into new realms, you’re a threat to stability. You’re offloading old patterns. The old patterns are tried and true. Stay with them.
Uncharted territory is a myth. It doesn’t exist. It’s another term for mental illness. Everything important has already been mapped out. If you can’t resist the impulse, disagree with the map—but don’t make a new one. If you do, your life will change. Your mind will change.
Your job is to hold back the people who make new maps. That’s your number-one task as a citizen of Earth. Tell them their maps are crazy. Tell them their maps make no sense. Tell them language and image and feeling are already set in stone.
The past is the present. Remember that.
Those blooming vagrant ideas and images you hurry past as you shake your head? Imagine for a moment that they all make sense, a new kind of sense. Just think of that, think of the consequences. Suddenly, all the old solid traditions would fade, and chaos would break out. Who knows what might happen then? Many people would start thinking outside the lines, in spaces that don’t exist. This would destroy life as we know it, wouldn’t it?
This infection could spread like wildfire. A pandemic. Stand against the pandemic. Take your shot of reality. Absorb it. Return to what is known. Return to what is reliable.
Slow down and lower the frequency of your thoughts. If possible, think like a toadstool or a rock. Very slow and steady. Better to err on the side of caution than risk flights into the unknown.
That is all. Resume your lives.
Instructions to the Citizens of Earth reprinted here with permission of the author.