At times, actors on the big screen can move us to tears, or make us laugh so hard our sides ache. Consider Saving Private Ryan, The Shawshank Redemption, or Inception, the stories and acting are just mind blowing. Every time I get done watching those films I wish I could thank the cast and crew personally for bringing such an incredible cinematic experience into my life. How grateful I am to the people who worked so hard to bring me that experience.
Now, imagine if Hollywood had a machine that could zap the actors’ minds and make them really believe they are the characters they are portraying. Imagine if some actors signed up for this “zapping” voluntarily for the sake of their art. Oh the drama. There could be no comparison.
Imagine how grateful I would be if the actors portraying the landing at Omaha Beach in Saving Private Ryan actually thought they were really killing each other. Imagine the emotional expression! It would be the highest drama ever captured on film for all time. Imagine how grateful for the performance we would all be to those actors. Words could not express the gratitude.
Now imagine a futuristic movie watching device that allowed the spectators of this performance to not only see the entire performance in perfect 3D from any angle, but also get to experience the emotional reactions and physical sensations of the actors themselves at any time. My God. There could be no higher form of entertainment. It would be the most glorious movie experience that could ever be conceived. The actors would be worshiped as gods simply for being themselves under the influence of this device.
Now imagine that you are one of these actors. Is it possible? If time runs on infinitely, then possible means it already happened. How do you know you aren’t one of these actors right now? Doesn’t viewing your life from this perspective remove all judgment from yourself and others? Doesn’t it make the brutality and the love we see each day glorious? Doesn’t it make your beliefs have meaning, no matter what they may be? Is there any other possible way of viewing the world that makes all the evil good in the end?
Perhaps Tom Hanks has nothing on you, or me for that matter.
Perhaps some day, when your performance finally comes to an end, and you step on the stage to take your bow, this is what you will hear:
The final scene of Goethe’s “Faust”, sung by a million billion souls in praise of you.