We are not born with demons.
They are created.
We learn them from experiences that lead us to then form memories in their honor. Fed by fear and assumption, we give them an illusory life of their own.
We name them.
We construct a story in their honor.
We proceed to retell that story to ourselves and those around us, over and over and over again.
We reinforce the supposed truths within it.
Like the Hindu deity Ganesha, we are the placers of our own obstacles and so, it is only we who can remove them.
What would happen if we simply ignored our inner beasts?
Not in the I-know-they-are-there-but-I-am-going-to-pretend-they-aren’t kind of way, but rather in the same manner you might realize the snake coiled in the dark corner of your bedroom is in fact a lifeless and harmless rope?
We are unable to face demons if they do not actually exist.
What does exist, however, is a definition.
A label we have at some point accepted as true.
What if “confronting” our demons was as simple as giving them a new perspective.
What if we could change our perspective by simply changing our definition?
Thomas Gray, an eighteenth-century poet once wrote, “Where ignorance is bliss, / ‘Tis folly to be wise.’”
This word, ignorance comes from the Latin word ignorantem (nominative ignorans) meaning “not knowing, lacking wisdom or knowledge; unaware.”
However, in the present participle, ignorare it could also mean “to take no notice of, to pay no attention to.”
Perhaps we are missing the point.
Happiness, in the way Grey refers to it, is not about being uninformed or knowledgeable.
It is about quieting the unnecessary narratives we have created about ourselves.
It is about discarding the storyboards of our past.
About letting go of our need to name and understand everything.
More importantly, it is about ignoring the urgency to bend a knee to our “demons” as though we were slaves to them.
If you take the the character out of its context, if you ignore its description, there is no plot to be played and the climax becomes the moment you realize you are, in fact, center stage.
So dance this dance you wild heart you.
You placer of problems
You remover of obstacles.
Do not confront your “demons,” be ignorant to them.
I dare you.