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The Illusionary Pleasures of Slavery


by  Julian Rose

This is a little dialogue that I hope may raise a smile. It’s about you, me and lots of others besides. I hope it tickles the soul.

I.V= Inner Voice  AN= Answer

I.V   It’s time to give up your present job
AN   No, not yet
I.V    It’s time to give up your present job
AN   I told you – not yet
I.V    It’s time to give up your present job
AN    Hell! Yes, its true
I.V    It’s time to follow your heart
AN   Oh really
I.V    Yes, truly

AN    My heart tells me to take it easy, enjoy what I have, make the best of things.
I.V    That’s not your heart
AN    Oh? Well what is it?
I.V    Your mind
AN    OK, my mind..
I.V    Your mind tells you you like the convenience of your present pattern of life
AN    Funny, I thought it was my heart telling me that..
I.V     Try thinking with your heart
AN    Listen, I don’t have time for your clever talk

I.V     What do you have time for?
AN    Actually I don’t have time for anything other than what I am doing at the moment
I.V     What are you doing at the moment?
AN    Arguing with you..
I.V     Is that a productive activity?
AN    I guess not..
I.V     (after an extended pause) You agreed that its time to give up your present job
AN     Did I?
I.V      You did
AN      So I did

I.V      So do it
AN     Heh! Just a minute! What’s the big rush – what am I going to do instead?
I.V     Listen to your heart.
AN     Listening to my heart won’t pay the bills!
I.V      Then ask your heart what will.
AN     Ha, ha! There you go again with your clever words..
I.V      Ask your heart where it wants to take you
AN     OK, OK, lets indulge in a little fantasy like that, shall we?
I.V      The fantasy is what you are experiencing in your present office job.
AN      Damn!

I.V       The fantasy is imagining that you are happy to go on this way.
AN      Very clever! Now look – I have to concentrate to complete this urgent order.
I.V      It is another order altogether that you need to concentrate upon.
AN      And what is that pray?
I.V      An order that your heart wishes to pass to you.
AN     Oh, how very good of it..
I.V      You know it’s true.
AN     All right, yes, I know it’s true – and I will change my job – but not now!
I.V      Now is always the best time to do what must be done
AN      Yes, but right now I need a cup of coffee.

I.V       A cup of coffee will not help you. Craving is the root of suffering
AN      That may be – but I want a coffee anyway
I.V       Who is the ‘I’ who wants a coffee?
AN      Hmmm..well I guess it’s the I that I believe I am..
I.V       Who is the ‘you’ you believe you are?
AN      That’s too philosophical – I have urgent work and I’m constantly interrupted!

I.V       Who is the ‘you’ who you believe is constantly being interrupted?
AN      It’s the me I see when I look in the mirror
I.V       That is not the you you are.
AN      Who is it then?
I.V       The one you see in the mirror is the ‘you’ you think you are.
AN      What’s the difference?
IV        The difference is that I am the you you really are.
AN      Lovely! I must remember that one – great line!

IV        It’s not a great line, but it is lovely.
AN      Your joking! I’m a wreck! I hate this stupid job – and I’m desperate for a coffee.
IV        What a good thing then that it’s not the real you who is suffering such torment.
AN      No doubt – but just who is it who is suffering this torment?
I.V       It is the masque that hides the real you..
AN      Go on then..
I.V       It is this masque that prevents you seeing the real you in the mirror.
AN      Heh! Aren’t you suffering too then?
I.V       Yes.
AN      Well there you are!

I.N       I’m suffering because my job is communication and the line is constantly busy.
AN      No, no I hear you all right..
I.N       ‘Hearing’ is not enough – real communication goes two ways
AN      Then we should talk to each other more often..
I.V       Exactly.
AN      What should we talk about?
I.V       How you must give up your job and let me tell you what to do next.
AN      That is heavily dependent on trust.
I.V       You don’t trust me? The real you?
AN      Well, it’s been a struggle for a long time now, you know…
I.V       Now is the time to engage this trust.
AN      Now is always the right time..

I.V       Good! I think you are getting it.
AN       You know – I don’t really need a coffee after all – but I still want one.
I.V       Yes, there is a difference between need and want.
AN       That may be – but unfortunately I still want a coffee and that is the dilemma.
I.V        That is not the dilemma.
AN        So what is the dilemma then?
I.V        The coffee stimulant distracts you from the frustration you feel in your job.
AN        Please don’t remind me how I loathe this vile job!
I.V         Then who is going to remind you?

AN        From now on I’m going to remind myself without your infuriating interventions.
I.V        But ‘I am’ your I am.
AN        Oh you are, are you! So, do you want a coffee too?
I.V        That is not my wish.
AN        So what is your wish?
I.V        To help you be who you are.
AN        And coffee doesn’t help in that I suppose..
I.V        Generally not.
AN        Oh, you mean there might be some exceptions?
I.V        If you were to take a very small amount and before drinking it repeat these
words with true intent “This is to remind me that I must give up my job and
find a way of following my heart no matter what obstacles stand in my way.”
AN       All right: (drinking a small amount of coffee) “I must give up my job and
find a way of  following my heart no matter what obstacles stand in my way.”

At this point the dialogue is interrupted by the irate voice of the department manager “What the hell do you think your doing? How often have I told you to complete this order on time – and now you have missed the deadline! You’re fired!”

After a considerable pause:

AN         I’ve lost my job..
I.V          Congratulations. Your act of intent has led to your wish being granted.
A significant first step in freeing yourself from the illusionary pleasures
of slavery.
AN         Ugh! I feel better already!



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  1. Wonderful, just wonderful! I love that word * Wonderful * you know…ful of wonders, Wonderful is all I have to say about this piece.

    Thank you.

  2. Unfortunately too many are still asleep and don’t hear their inner voice. They have minds that tick like a clock and, like a clock, it regularly goes cuckoo.

    • Oh they hear they’re inter voice , its say shit like , You deserve a brake to today , and I’m love it . Its miller time, That chick has a huge rack , If i had that Porsche i would have a bigger knob and getting laid everyday and twice on Sunday !, Monday night football , pizza , My perfume makes males want me but I have to act shy , My tattoo makes me the hip mom , chest implants , more make up one can never not look like them selves enough , fuck i am afraid to see what happens if they do wake up.

      • Hm, it’s AN inner voice but not THE [divine] inner voice. This programmable ego-inner voice – as I wrote – goes cuckoo. ;D
        Yeah, what when they wake up? Perhaps they ask themselves the same question I asked myself: OMFG – how could I’ve been so dumb? Ok, let’s party now! 😉

        “There was not a lot that could be done to make Morpork a worse place. A direct hit by a meteorite, for example, would count as gentrification.”
        – T. Pratchett, Pyramids

          • But always with a wink. – Don’t you think?

            There was a thoughtful pause in the conversation as the assembled Brethren mentally divided the universe into the deserving and the undeserving, and put themselves on the appropriate side.
            — The Elucidated Brethren see the light
            – T. Pratchett, Guards! Guards!

  3. Beautiful! Now let’s All put these words into action for Ourselves and Move On and make the Earth a Better World for All.

  4. I have tested it and IV gets a lot more agreeable with a six-pack of Shiner in the fridge. Additionally, IV is still asleep when I sneak up the coffee machine.

    Only slightly more serious, I gladly read this to my sweetheart, finding the rushed voice to be anxious and IV to be calm and soothing. She and I are both Artists trudging through technical work. My mind spends way too much time settling for the status quo.
    ty zen

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