Now, be prepared dear reader, as we keep journeying down this path, it is bound to get a little darker. You see, I spoke truthfully when I said that at the beginning The Illusionist appears a harmless friend and that is simply because that is all he hopes for you to see. But it is a mask that holds a truly sinister purpose. With the appearance of no threat, he can creep into your mind and thoughts. His harmless questions, on the surface are the hope of an open door, a listening ear, a comforting friend. He speaks to you about ease and less worry, he understands the burdens you carry, he's seen them many times, and urges you to put them to one side. You are, after all, more important than any one else. You deserve a break. Take a breather, a stroll down an easier, wider road. But this is one of his greatest pretends. Through this illusion he wields a power to transform your thinking on more than just this one change of direction. He works to bring you to destruction, not to simply cloud your mind for one night.
(If you do find yourself on Wide Road, I suggest you turn around and run back to where you came from as quickly as possible, and do not look back to listen to his coaxing, concerned voice. For that path leads to some sort of horror. I have not seen it, but I hear of dark things that live there, waiting for their next visitor. It is an endless torture, it is his prison.)
Really reader, you want to give up already? Do you think I would lead you down this way if there was no sign of hope? Hope is actually the best chance you have of making it through safely as she knows these paths like the back of her hand, night or day. She has traveled them many a time and can shed light on the truth behind the tricks. Hope has a wonderful way of getting through the night, because what she holds on to so dearly but what we are quite quick to forget, dear reader, is the simple truth that after night comes day. The sun, no matter what has happened in darkness, will always rise afterwards to reveal what is in front of you, which, I'm sure you have experienced, most of the time is not what you thought it was at all. This is a good way of understanding hope, because she is always there, it simply takes an outstretched hand and a mutual agreement to bring her into the picture. You see, the Illusionist would have you believe that you are to walk the dead of night alone, but you must know, this is a well worn path. We have many allies who have journeyed this path many a time, and come through the other side without losing Hope.
With all this talk about dark paths and hidden tricks let us not forget my introduction to this terrible matter with, what now seems, a more light hearted thought about 'lemon pies'. This doesn't seem like such an awful outcome does it reader? There you are thinking, 'Why has she gone into such depth about getting pie in her face?' Well then let me elaborate on this. Just imagine that I do let the 'pies' scare me off this one time. Once you're convinced of something, Fear has an incredible talent for building that one small thought up in your mind till it's less of a pie and more of a glass bottle. It brings pain into the picture, embarrassment, regret, shame, disappointment. If you allow that to fester, eventually, like a virus, it will consume any idea you have. "If you do this, it has the potential for going wrong." I heard a man say this, not too long ago, he then added "It also has the potential to be absolutely amazing." Agreed. Remember that Fear gives half truth, he never finishes a sentence. And it is in the darkness that he speaks to you as it is easier to cover the other parts up.
So as the light reveals everything for what it really is, surely the point I have been trying to make this whole time looks very plain and simple to you right now. Perhaps the idea that I am trying to express is simply to let the pies fall where they may. Perhaps even to get hit in the face. Perhaps by understanding that you may even get hit several times, from different directions, but still remain standing is the key. Perhaps by withstanding the terror from the first blow, your focus will be diverted from the crowd and as you look down you notice the smallest creature scurry away, and you double-take as you recognize that Fear was really, for the most part, just a terribly large shadow on the wall.
I don't mean to sugar coat the reality of our lives. Comparing my nervous entry to begin with, now seems quite incomparable with the general harsh light that life can tend to use more than once as we can often stumble blindly into our decisions and purposes that end up creating a picture not quite the idea of perfection we envisioned at the start. I understand that pain is inevitable throughout. The phrase "pain is beauty" has been associated with the grueling hours it takes to produce something to be beautiful, and stand effortlessly so. Like a runway model fitting into designer heels two inches too high and two sizes too small, there's always more to the story than the cheap smile that you can wear to hide the suffering down below. I'd prefer to take and tweak this statement for our journey here and encourage you that pain is part of beauty. After all, what would my story be like if there were no moments of pain? Would this be an interesting blog if I wrote about how often I magically turn to the keys and find a perfect draft pops out every time (may I point out, this post has been through endless drafts)? Don't tease me, dear reader, you'd be throwing the pies with ease, and without warning, before long!
So I don't hide behind any mask. I am no Illusionist, and don't pretend to be! This blog may sometimes be unexpectedly not what you expected, and I may disgracefully reveal some of the hard parts of my process. I believe I'll find mutual ground with you here reader. I feel we may be able to track the path together, and if we stay close, we may even find ways to get through to the dawn of what seemed like an endless night.
"Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them.
It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret.
But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and
everything that is illuminated becomes a light."