The First Thing

It’s not always necessary to begin at the beginning; sometimes you can begin somewhere better, like the always. And this is what you should know:

This is always true. And it’s always easy. And it’s always right. And it’s always good.
That’s all you really need to know, although you have my promise I’ll tell you a thousand more things, but each thing is just another part of the comforting never-puzzle of our very basic truth: all of this feels wonderful. Like a hot bath, if you like hot baths; like a moment of cool rain that refreshes before you dry off and enter a peaceful wakefulness; like the fragrance of something from your youth, something that made you magically happy, something you probably can’t remember, but it’s grand.
It feels amazing, and the fact that it takes away your choices and decisions and replaces them with the illusion of action is just pointless philosophy; you’ve made the decision to be right, you’ve put in the hard work of joining the anointed, you’ve entered the war of that which is meaningful and kind against the freakishly monstrous. There need never be anything better than knowing you’re doing the right thing, for the right reasons, and that’s why it feels righ%t, and that’s why you are right, and that’s why the others are wrong; and you sink, sink, sink into the pillowy puffy clouds of soft, gentle joy, and you need never feel discomfort again, except when confronted with things that are wrong.
Any amateur hypnotist, any harsh-spirited stoic, anyone who believes that strength is built though overcoming more often than submerging, will tell you that everything above is, if not definite malicious misthought, then (at least) likely self-deception. There’s comfort in a mind that can act without thought; but there’s also comfort in a mind that acts because it has burned out thought like an old electroshock therapist burning off neural connections.
But there’s no room for doubters here. Believe, or be damned. What I say will be true, and it will feel nice; wouldn’t you prefer that to torment and self-doubt?
Stay here. Stay in those words, the ones above. Even if they don’t appeal to you precisely, you can move them around a bit so that they touch on your best memories, your happiest beliefs, your simplest pleasures.
Whereas to continue is to (likely) be torn apart by doubt. To be uncertain. To question.
To be, in short, unblissed, disquieted, made uneasy.
Everything above is dessert; everything below is vitamins infused into bitter iron pills.
Go no farther. You don’t need any more. Your life is hard enough.
You’ve read all there is to read; everything beyond it is probably a lie. Everything above is lovely; a glass of pink wine, a few words of a beloved voice, a place where justice is simple and happiness creates truth.
Stop now. You’re done. Thank you for your time.
Or you could come with me, I guess. There’s these big chunks of pain, and they might be the majority of what’s left.. It’s funny sometimes, but only the kind of humor where it hurts when you laugh. There’s loss. There’s a lack of clarity. Rewards and outcomes are uncertain, and you don’t even have the comfort of knowing that you will ultimately be correct.
All you’ll know is that you chose the uncertainty over the lobotomy.
And I’m not sure it’s even ethical for me to suggest you should do that.
On the plus side, it only hurts when you laugh.
Or when you don’t.
Jeff Mach Written by:

Jeff Mach is an author, playwright, event creator, and certified Villain. You can always pick up his bestselling first novel, "There and NEVER, EVER BACK AGAIN"—or, indeed, his increasingly large selection of other peculiar books. If you'd like to talk more to Jeff, or if you're simply a Monstrous Creature yourself, stop by @darklordjournal on Twitter, or The Dark Lord Journal on Facebook.