"So...do you believe in unicorns then?"
This started as a joke question I asked someone a few years ago, not expecting her to say that she did. But she did, and not only that, but she saw them quite often. In the fourth dimension. We argued about it for a little while, but my incredulous voice finally got too high to be of any use. It was so crazy to believe in unicorns and yet she believed it to be true with every one of her twenty two activated strands of DNA.
I live, by the way, very near Glastonbury, where I work at an alternative centre. The irony is rich and absolute.
I'm a sceptical, questioning unbeliever, a godless Loki-hearted joker in a pack of earnestly serious Tarot cards. When it comes to belief, it often feels like I'm in a group of one, a lone sore thumb. I could move, it's true, find more like-minded people elsewhere, where the grass is greener, but where's the fun in that? So I choose to stay on, feeling slightly over-spleened, a little under-vented, a trifle under-understood and probably in need of a long, earnestly meaningful hug. And I ask people occasionally, when I'm feeling investigative, the unicorn question.
All of the people I've asked* since that first time have likewise replied ... (and I quote, embarrassingly and abashedly, hence the smallness...) "yes!", and it's actually getting more unbelievable than actual unicorns. But it's truly true, really really real. A section of the population honestly believe that uni-horned horses exist, either in this world, all whiffling ears and offered dreams on a whim and a spike, or happily adrift in the fourth dimension where they merrily cavort with virgins and stuff. And that's the thing.
In the twenty first century, for some, proof/TRUTH/reality can only really exist in the eye and faith-filled mind of the beholder. So whatever can be believed, will be believed by someone. You can bet your bottom dollar. It's just another acceptable paradigm amidst a multiverse of equally valid ways of perceiving the world. Except, strangely, and specifically, when it comes to mainstream truths, like science and doctors and physics and chemistry and astronomy and biology, going about all know-it-all with their proofs and falsifiable hypotheses. Seriously, who'd be stupid enough to believe all that when THE TRUTH is so obviously true.
And people say that I'm stubborn.
*(My eyebrows express incredulity far too well, so I frown when I say it, thus ensuring they stay at an even, reasonable level. Poker eyebrows.)