once upon a time, there was a player.
the player was you.
sometimes it thought itself human, on the thin crust of a spinning globe of molten rock. the ball of molten rock circled a ball of blazing gas that was three hundred and thirty thousand times more massive than it. they were so far apart that light took eight minutes to cross the gap. the light was information from a star, and it could burn your skin from a hundred and fifty million kilometres away.
sometimes the player dreamed it was a miner on the surface of a world that was flat and infinite. the sun was a square of white. the days were short; there was much to do;death was a temporary inconvenience.
sometimes the player dreamed it was lost in a story.
sometimes the player dreamed it was other things, in other places. sometimes these dreams were disturbing. sometimes very beautiful. sometimes the player woke from one dream into another, then woke from that into a third.
sometimes the player dreamed it watched words on a screen.
the atoms of the player were scattered in the grass, in the rivers, in the air, in the ground. a woman gathered the atoms; she drank and ate and inhaled; and the woman assembled the player, in her body.
and the player awoke, from the warm, dark world of its mother's body, into the long dream.
and the player was a new story, never told before, written in letters of DNA. and the player was a new program, never run before, generated by a sourcecode a billion years old. and the player was a new human, never alive before, made from nothing but milk and love.
the seven billion atoms of the player's body were created, long before this game, in the heart of a star. so the player, too, is information from a star
sometimes the player created a small, private world that was soft and warm and simple. sometimes hard, and cold, and complicated. sometimes it built a model of the universe in its head; flecks of energy, moving through vast empty spaces. Sometimes it called those flecks "electrons" and "protons".
sometimes it called them "planets" and "stars".
sometimes it believed it was in a universe that was made of energy that was made of offs and ons; zeros and ones; lines of code. Sometimes it believed it was playing a game. Sometimes it believed it was reading words on a screen.
you are the player, reading words...
sometimes the player read lines of code on a screen. decoded them into words; decoded words into meaning; decoded meaning into feelings, emotions, theories, ideas, and the player started to breathe faster and deeper and realised it was alive, it was alive, those thousand deaths had not been real, the player was alive
you. you. you are alive.
and sometimes the player believed the universe had spoken to it through the sunlight that came through the shuffling leaves of the summer trees
and sometimes the player believed the universe had spoken to it through the light that fell from the crisp night sky of winter, where a fleck of light in the corner of the player's eye might be a star a million times as massive as the sun, boiling its planets to plasma in order to be visible for a moment to the player, walking home at the far side of the universe, suddenly smelling food, almost at the familiar door, about to dream again
and sometimes the player believed the universe had spoken to it through the zeros and ones, through the electricity of the world, through the scrolling words on a screen at the end of a dream
and the universe said I love you
and the universe said you have played the game well
and the universe said everything you need is within you
and the universe said you are stronger than you know
and the universe said you are the daylight
and the universe said you are the night
and the universe said the darkness you fight is within you
and the universe said the light you seek is within you
and the universe said you are not alone
and the universe said you are not separate from every other thing
and the universe said you are the universe tasting itself, talking to itself, reading its own code
and the universe said I love you because you are love.
and the game was over and the player woke up from the dream. and the player began a new dream. and the player dreamed again, dreamed better. and the player was the universe. and the player was love.
everything is real. everything that you imagine. everything that you can imagine. it's all real.. and now we are here, together.. thank you.. thank you for being here with me