When you think about it, people care more for mythology than they do for truth. Over the years I’ve met people of all persuasions (forgive the irony) who refused to shift their position in the fact of new evidence.
Whether it’s Churchill’s proposal for a United States of Europe or whatever really happened on that fateful September 11th in 2001, we tend to treat our beliefs and opinions like football teams – once we’ve bought the scarf there’s no going back. Personally, I like the cross currents of ambiguity and firmly believe (at least for today) that opinions are for entertainment purposes only. While I can’t manage the egolessness of Plato’s ‘This I know- that I know nothing’, I make a point of regularly questioning my own values and viewpoint.
People have gone to war over beliefs and ideologies and yet, when it all comes down to it, surely our similarities are always greater than our differences?
So, the main purpose of this blog post is to allow my fellow writers and readers from the A Word with You Press online creative community to get a proper look at the graphic above. It comes from a back issue of As Above So Below magazine and features my spoof on the US Declaration of Independence and David French’s stylistic eye.
Now, I know that July 4th has a mythology (or history, if you prefer) all of its own. In my brief time out there, I came to see the reverence and relevance in which it’s held. I’ve also read books such as The Temple and The Lodge, which delve into the influence of freemasonry in the creation of the USA. It’s a slightly different history, but the ending is the same!
So why did David French and I point a satirical finger at the United States of Europe? Because, as all lovers of comedy know, the ambiguity of no-man’s land, where something ‘is and is not’ is fertile ground for squishing ideas together and then adding your own topping. We liked the idea so much that the USE became a regular feature of our magazine and some of our readers liked it too (apart from the ones who hated it).
So to conclude this circular path, mythology is important. And okay, if we start to veer towards religious ideas, you can use a different word now if it makes you feel happier. In writing, what occurs is less important than what the characters and the readers believe and feel has taken place. As that quintessential American writer Mark Twain (or Samuel Langhorne Clemens if you prefer) put it so well: “Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.”