Ideas can be ghostly entities, pure inventions of our spirits, just living in them and in our acts. What are hell, demons, witches? Mere ideas…
But ideas – even the fictitious - have the characteristics of living entities: they live in us, in our brains, and are able to reproduce themselves, passing from mind to mind, from believer to believer.
Ideas may represent non existing realities, but still they enslave their believers. Whoever truly believes in an idea, is in many senses a true slave to this same idea. And all of us are. All of us are prisoners of the ideas we believe in:
Every man, wherever he goes, is encompassed by a cloud of comforting convictions, which move with him like flies on a summer day.
Bertrand Russel, 1872-1970, English philosopher and mathematician, Marriage and Morals
Yet more disturbing: many of our ideas are fatal to us. They can drive us to evil and suffering, even when inspired by love.
Yes. Love is in a way a mere illusion and a creation of our spirit. Most of the times love is marvellous, but it can also be a foolish idea. How can we classify otherwise the love of money, of some gods, or of some sexual and passionate loves?
We need love. Love gives meaning to our lives. And in this sense the ideas of love are substantial, essential. But that doesn’t mean that love isn’t an animal or human creation, an invention of our spirits. Which obviously sounds very strange…