Bird Box: Psychological Warfare, or Dose of Truth?

Photo by: Johannes Winger-Lang

I watched the movie “Bird Box” last night, and I have to say that it was a really interesting concept for a movie. I really enjoyed it, but after sitting with it for a while, I’ve come to see that there is much more to this movie than what meets the eye (pun not intended).

If you’ve already watched the movie, you can skip to the “My thoughts” section. *Spoiler alert below!* in the movie recap section.

Movie Recap

In the movie, there is an unseen force that, when people look at it, it causes them to commit suicide. The movie never explicitly shows what this force is, whether it has some sort of demonic appearance, or whether it actually has any physical form at all. So the characters must wear blindfolds when travelling outside, in order to avoid seeing the force.

There are also a type of people in the movie that can look at this force, but rather than committing suicide, they find it beautiful, so they try to get others to look at it as well. These people are termed as crazy, and some of them described as insane patients from mental institutions.

These “crazy” individuals are portrayed as malicious, and intentionally trying to harm others by getting them to look at the force that will cause them to commit suicide.

At the end of the movie, the only survivors who are seemingly thriving and living a prosperous life are found in a school for blind people. Here, everyone is safe from the force, especially the blind, who are completely unable to see it. It is the one true safe haven in the movie where everyone is at peace and protected.

My Thoughts

After seeing the story unfold, and thinking about what the director was trying to convey with the “force”, the crazy people, and the school of the blind, I initially thought that this movie was trying to instill fears and fearful beliefs in the audience.

It seemed like the movie was giving out the message that, if you hide from your problems hard enough, and remain blind to the things that you wish to avoid, and avoid those who are trying to get you to face your fears, you’ll eventually find somewhere comfortable and peaceful where you will never have to suffer. And you’ll live happily forever.

But if you dare face your fears, or take a real look at yourself and your life, you’ll see something so horrible and terrifying that it’ll literally make you want to kill yourself. And if others try to help you face your fears, they’re really just insane people who wish to harm you, and trusting them will lead you to your own destruction.

That’s what I thought the director was trying to tell the audience. But then I stopped and thought about it for a minute.

Maybe the movie was intentionally trying to communicate this dark message. Or maybe this was just the director’s way of shedding light on our own fearful belief systems. Why do we believe that others are trying to harm us? Why are we afraid to look at the force? What could be so scary that it would cause us to commit suicide? Perhaps these are the kinds of questions that Bird Box encourages us to ask ourselves.

I think this movie has a powerful message. Do you want to live in a reality where you’re afraid of seeing the truth, and afraid that others are trying to harm you? Do you want to live in a reality where you’re so afraid that you have to blind yourself from your own fears?

Because that type of reality is possible. If you choose to hold onto certain belief systems, that’s the type of world you’ll eventually create for yourself. The point of horror movies is to give you a depiction of how life would look if your deepest fears were manifested into reality.

Bird Box is what happens when we believe that trusting others and facing our fears is dangerous. This is the reality you’ll ultimately choose for yourself if you continue to hold onto fear.

So what will you choose to believe? 😉

Analogy Time: The Universe as God’s Video Game

Imagine a video game, in which you can create a character, and you can choose between 3 different races. You can choose between a human warrior, lizard warrior, or a feline warrior (think Skyrim).

In addition to the classic attributes that you can give your characters, such as strength, intelligence, and dexterity, this complex video game also contains more attributes, like aggressiveness, charisma, humour, sensitivity, ect. Let’s say you have 500 points to allot to the 100 different attributes in this video game.

Now, let’s say you choose the feline warrior, and then you give him more points in intelligence, less in dexterity, and so forth, until you’ve spent all of your points on the different attributes. Mathematically, there are an infinite number of combinations (or a very very high number) of how you can distribute your 500 points to the many different attributes.

And let’s say that this video game also has the function to generate new characters by randomly choosing one of 3 races, and randomly distributing the points among the attributes.

These characters are all fundamentally the same because they all have the same attributes, just with different distribution of points. Sure, some of them look different because some are humans and some are lizards, some are physically stronger than others, some are more artistic, but they all have the same attributes, just at different polarities.

Let’s take a step back from this video analogy for a second to think about how this video game was created in the first place. Any video game is just the mental creation of a team of game developers, is it not? Does the video game use any physical resources in order to be created?

It doesn’t, because video games are just code, a bunch of 1’s and 0’s inputted on a computer and run by software in order to be playable. Even though there are rocks, buildings, trees, ect., which are perceived as “real” by the characters in the video game, these things don’t actually exist because it’s all a mental creation.

The only thing that is required to create a video game is mental energy, which gets transferred into code on a computer. 1’s and 0’s are just information, it is the result of transferring mental energy onto a physical medium.

For simplicity’s sake, let’s say that this video game was created by just one person. You can say that this video game is this person’s mental creation, and thus the characters are all his mental creation. You can even say that his video game is his own mentally created “universe”.

Is this universe that we live in unlike a video game? All of us here on Earth share the same source coding (DNA), and we also have all of the same traits to different degrees (Read about this further here). Remember that the video game characters also share the same source coding (1’s and 0’s), and the same attributes at different polarities.

So to go back to the video game analogy, you can interpret the lizard, human and feline races, as Hispanic, Black, White, ect. And instead of strength, dexterity, charisma, for example, those traits can be selfishness, pride, kindness, friendliness, introversion/extroversion, and so forth.

Of course, life in our universe is infinitely more complicated than a video game, but the analogy holds true. Is it not theoretically possible to create a video game like the one I described above, only by adding more races, attributes (all human traits), and other customizable physical dimensions, and by distributing points randomly across those different attributes?

We could theoretically create a video game that simulates our entire universe, and we could see how these AI characters with their varying attributes interact with each other. We would basically be like Gods, creating our own universes. Of course, creating that kind of video game to be the same as the universe would be infinitely complex, but hopefully my analogy still makes sense to you.

So let’s say our universe was created mentally by something, which I’ll call Source. A video game is thus a mental creation in the same way that the universe is. Furthermore, maybe a video game creator has the theoretical capacity to put their entire consciousness into an infinitely complex video game. So maybe our universe is Source’s entire consciousness playing out mentally.