I’m finding it difficult to leave A Scanner Darkly by Phillip K. Dick behind after finishing my blog about it. I’ve been immersed in it for over a week, and I worked really hard on my last post. I’m finalizing my thoughts on the story and how it pertains to my own ideas on life…
I think that I share in Bob Arctor’s conflict. In certain areas of life, we become so steeped in negativity that we lose our ability to climb out of it. Arctor as “Frank” slowly lost his ability to differentiate between good and bad. Since he saw darkly, the scanner saw darkly. In some way, we need to be able to constantly look at our lives through a fresh, clear lens, to be able to hit our reset buttons, or be able to listen to and seek the counsel of someone who loves us and can see the big picture and what we need to do in our lives to progress. Even if our situation is overwhelmingly good, is it good to rest or ever be satisfied? Or, is it better to continue to climb even higher, to find a way to extend ourselves even more?
Poor Arctor didn’t really have anyone to trust, anyone who could be his rock. He sunk in to a group in which nobody could see a path to truth. Even good people, surrounded by vice, will fall eventually. I’m very thankful to have some relationships with people who care very much to not let me fall. I do have problems, but my family and friends and teachers don’t let me become too comfortable the way I am.
It’s good to feel good, but, I believe, that there is always a higher place to climb to. I believe that we all need a dream to chase and people–teachers, family, friends, lovers–who can help us not fall in to being too satisfied where we are. Nobody really “makes it” in our world unless everyone does, IMHO. Either we view life as a constant test to achieve more, to achieve a better version of ourselves, or life just happens to us as if we are victims or just here and gone. Having dreams is so important. They are our hope, our path in to the “Light.” Hopefully more of us wake up to chase more good to have in our lives and the lives around us. Gaining with an attitude that we are making our lives and the lives of others better is a consciousness that can help pull our innermost desire for happiness out. I believe that the characters in A Scanner Darkly were missing this consciousness, the consciousness that, whatever good we desire, we must take a piece of it and share it, albeit, in Dick’s fictitious world, the story plays out better the way it is told.