PAGeNEWS Archives

  • 2012 (6)
  • 2011 (65)
  • 2010 (224)

Inceptional Insights

INCEPTIONAL INSIGHTs
 
Spoiler alert: The below commentary may contain information that could adversely affect the viewing of the movie Inception. But go ahead and read it anyway.
  
The following are my not-so-random thoughts after watching Inception on two separate occasions. You are free to either agree or disagree with them – but in either case I suggest you see the movie before deciding.  
 
Using metaphors and symbols, certain films have provided clues, hints, and information about the true nature of our reality. As with the Matrix, the Thirteenth Floor, Dark City, Total Recall, the Truman Show and other similar-themed films before it, Inception continues the trend with a multitude of intriguing insights.
 
Unlike the Matrix, which – for some unknown reason – I avoided seeing until several months after it had opened, I not only attended the opening of Inception in Sedona a week ago Friday, I revisited the movie on Saturday with a pad and pen to take notes. There was just too much information to remember the first time around – and after the first viewing, I had the distinct impression that some of that information was meant for me. I am sure you have felt the same way after seeing certain movies.
 
Inception stars Leonardo DiCaprio together with a superb supporting cast including Ellen Page, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Cillian Murphy to name only a few. The movie is essentially about dreams and how corporate criminals use them to gain an economic advantage over the competition. While the movie is fascinating with its cutting edge special effects, the story is quite implausible and beyond understanding in some parts – so much so that the writers don’t even attempt to explain the technology or pharmacology involved in artificially inducing and controlling the dream state. But Inception’s special appeal for me lies both in the subtle similarities between the dream state and a programmed simulation (which I believe we are all part of) as well as the specific themes that are repeated over and over.
 
To briefly digress and summarize what some refer to as my delusional thinking, I believe that on the winter solstice of 2012 (December 21st) a portal leading to the Galactic Center will open in Sedona Arizona at Bell Rock and that a leap of faith by me is somehow involved. Though I am still unsure of the details of the leap of faith, others have assumed that I intend to jump off the top of Bell Rock. Though I presently have no such intention – I believe that a leap of faith could be necessary to activate the portal.
 
So with that in mind you can imagine my utter surprise and amazement when the phrase leap of faith was mentioned on three occasions throughout the movie. The first reference was in the form of a question directed at DiCaprio’s character: Do you want to take a leap of faith or become an old man and die alone? No brainer here; I plan to go with the former. The second involved a scene where Marion Cotillard, playing DiCaprio’s wife, believing that her real world was also a dream, jumps off the window ledge of a skyscraper to prove the point. In the movie one of the ways of waking from a dream is to die within that dream. Right before Cotillard jumps (actually pushes off) she asks DiCaprio to take the leap of faith with her. The phrase is again stated near the end – in the context of honoring a prior agreement to return home. It should be noted that the underlying motivation of DiCaprio’s character is his relentless desire to return home. For me returning home is a metaphor for returning to the Source of our simulation. Although there have been other films and TV programs that featured a leap of faith, particularly the Martian Chronicles, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, and the hit TV show LOST only in Inception do you find the symbolism so repeatedly emphasized.
 
Whereas in our simulation we experience a common reality while awake and individual dreams while asleep, Inception’s characters share common dreams during artificially-induced sleep. Inception’s dream state has four levels – each one deeper into the dreamer’s subconscious. The movie was somewhat confusing as to whose subconscious was controlling the dream at any given time but by the end of the movie it didn’t really matter. There were several references to downward being the only way forward which I assume to be a metaphor for the proposition that the highest levels of enlightenment are found deep inside each of us.
 
Also quite revealing was Inception’s emphasis that if you died within a dream you simply awoke. The previous message found in both the Matrix and the Thirteenth Floor was that if you died in a simulation you also died in the real world. But with Inception comes a new and more encouraging message. The movie contains at least four references to the dying to awaken theme.
 
If you to die within the dream world of Inception, you awaken in its real world with one exception. Inception’s fourth level of the subconscious is called Limbo. It is the place you end up in if a chemical sedative is used to keep you in the dream state. Unfortunately the movie doesn’t really explain how one escapes from Limbo so it is probably not a good idea to die in our simulation from an overdose of drugs. Inception also describes another way of waking a person (other than killing him in the dream) before the dream’s natural conclusion. It is called the kick. The kick is creating a situation in which the dreamer is made to physically experience the sensation of free falling while asleep in the real world.  Does my leap of faith involve a free fall? Only my programmer knows for sure.
 
According to Inception time is perceived differently on each of the four levels. Five minutes in the real world is 100 minutes in the first level of the dream state. The concept that time conforms to the parameters of any particular simulation is not new. In the Star Trek Next Generation episode The Inner Light, an alien probe knocks Picard unconscious and he awakens on a strange world. While only 25 minutes have passed aboard the Enterprise, Picard spends an entire lifetime on this new world before he dies and awakens back on board his Starship. In the movie Total Recall, a one-hour lunch break at Rekall translates into a two week vacation in one of its virtual reality programs.
 
Inception introduces us to the concept of a totem – a reality-based device that alerts a person to whether he is still in a dream state. Though it would be ideal for me to possess such a physical object, in this simulation I am afraid that I must rely on faith to lead me to the truth.
 
To summarize, Inception references: 1) a leap of faith on three occasions; 2) that both free falling and dying awaken you from a dream; 3) that an entire lifetime in a simulation can occur within a blink of a cosmic eye; 4) and that returning home is necessary. Now you know why I went back to see it a second time. 
 
By the way, if I needed further confirmation that the above information was – at least on one level – directed towards me, the numbers that open the locked compartment of the target’s subconscious in the film (528491) add to 11. Since I watched it twice, would that be an 11:11?
 
But there was one – and only one – statement that I found disconcerting. It was stated by DiCaprio’s character in the scene I described earlier and right before his wife pushes herself off the ledge: If you jump you are going to die; you are not going to wake up.
  
So as not to end this commentary on a depressing note, I share with you this one last Inceptional Insight: At one point in the movie Cotillard’s character employs an interesting strategy in attempt to convince DiCaprio that he has no choice but to join her in the leap of faith. Unfortunately I cannot explain further for fear of revealing an important aspect of the plot, but apparently it would be wise for me to have at least one psychiatrist determine my mental state in the near future just in case the authorities decide that my actions on December 21, 2012 pose a threat to myself or others.
 
-.:PAG:.-
 
24 July 2010
 

11:11 Invitation

Leave a Reply

  

  

  

*

This blog is kept spam free by WP-SpamFree.