The Un/real Human Mind
The best fantasy world is the fertility of the mental imagination
The biggest, best, brightest, bustiest, brawniest fantasy worlds are the mental stories unfolding in human consciousnesses. We don’t need to outsource to a film team or a novelist; the best stories have happened in a child’s mind while they were playing in the dirt. And the best stories are enveloped in pillars of truth.
Art imitates life. Even the wonkiest, fabricated, sensationalised narrative hitting the box office in Hollywood was written by someone who experienced some semblance of this artistic story in their own life. When it comes down to it, life is art. A real story was once fantasy, conjured up in a human brain with the creativity of Da Vinci, brought into being through cobbling together the right circumstances and a bit of luck.
Let’s dive into what I consider the best fantasy world that exists – the mind of the neurodivergent. Here’s a stream of consciousness pieced together that captures what a stroke of creativity can do.
Hi, my name’s Shippy, and I am a large boat. Born into a family of ships, my relatives Dingey and Yachty spend most of their time in Sydney, Australia. When the horizon is empty and the seas uncrowded, Shippy shapeshifts into Swimmy – a high powered submarine able to reach the depths of the Pacific Ocean. Thru magical means, Swimmy then shapeshifts into Drilly, drilling a hole into the Earth’s crust and searching for a canister of golden exilir. The exilir is said to reverse ageing by 10 years, literally creating more life.
I, Shippy, wake one rainy morning to a particular message through my completely encrypted radio system. It’s going to take some mathematical prowess to decode the message and perhaps find out the exact earth mantle coordinates of the golden elixir.
$#%^& &*_$ )##%! is the only information given? Shippy looks at his laptop and looks again. Could these special characters in the message simply be the numerical coordinates of the GPS position of the golden elixir on Earth?
43567 784 03351
Latitude 43 degrees 56 minutes 7 seconds, longitude 7 degrees 8 minutes 4 seconds, depth below the crust 33 metres 51 centimetres. Done!
Shippy calls on Dingey and Yachty to assist him in his journey to find the golden elixir. Together they have a series of exchanges with mermen and octopi as they struggle to conceal the truth of their ocean travels.
This extract came to me in a short moment. With great excitement, I encourage a human to exercise their own skills in creativity and novelty and produce wildly new things. Sure, the ideas come from some degree of imitation. But how original can you attempt to get? Creativity is brainpower. It took creativity to get us to the moon, and fertile human imaginations will solve the environmental crisis impacting all homo-sapiens on Mother Gaia.
The intersections of fiction and non-fiction are apparent. Every unique practical solution to a logistical problem is first a fictitious idea in some team member’s life. Then that team member communicates that solution information to their superior. The made-up story in their heads is trialled in the workplace – becoming non-fiction or real.
Yes, the most incredible fantasy world I have come across is the human mind. Creative, original, novel ideas stem from an innocent child wandering their neighbourhood looking for fun. Ask yourself, is there another way I can do this? What would happen if this small thing changed in the conditions? Why does it have to be done this way? I have more time, find three solutions to the same problem. Fantasy’s exquisite power lies deep in its basis in breaking out into the real world. The human mind’s capacity to fantasise about almost anything is where great stories are stored.