The Writers Voice
The World's Favourite Literary Website

What is the Matrix?


Aaron Atkinson

Trinity said, “It’s the question that drives us”

Neo asked, “What is the Matrix?”

If you were asked this question, could you answer it and feel confident that your answer was correct? Is The Matrix just another Science Fiction trilogy full of action, heroes, villains and Kung Fu fighting? Could it be about love and what one would do to protect it, or about the irony of man being his own worst enemy?

The only un-debatable fact about the Matrix is that it is full of questions. For this reason, many viewers complain daily on message boards that the trilogy was confusing and none of the important questions was answered. Are you sure? I found through each viewing of each movie that a new question arose. I also discovered that each time I watched the films an old question of mine was answered.

Socrates discovered that one thing human beings do not take kindly is for some one to challenge them to think, by asking too many questions. He even paid with his life because his way of thinking was considered too radical for the time period. Yet today he is studied for being one of the pioneering philosophers. As we reflect on the Matrix trilogy ten years from now, we will discover that it not only “frees our minds,” but also that the film had a clear message and purpose from the beginning. The question we will encounter is whether we were asking the wrong question all along.

As I sat in the theater in June of 1999, I got ready to watch what many considered to be the most exciting and groundbreaking film in years. This is what I heard daily on the Best Buy ad that ran in the video department advertising for the film. I knew I was going to be dazzled, amazed by the action, and wowed by this bullet-time everyone was talking about. By the end of the film, I found my experience was not one of amazement, but one of confusion and even boredom. It was nothing like I thought it was going to be. Though many people would praise it, I wrote it off as something I was not into.

I could have never watched the film again, but if I had done that, my life would not be what it is today. Really? You may question how a (fictitious) movie could have this kind of an impact on one's life, but if you take the time to find out what the Matrix is, you will find out more about yourself than you ever knew.

Morpheous said, “No one can be told what the Matrix is, you must see it for yourself.”

We all search for the true meaning of life and why we are here, but what we should be doing is defining who we are by what we do with our lives. The Oracle told Neo during their first meeting that he was not “The One” even though she knew he was. If she had informed him he was in fact “The One,” he would not have continued defining his path, for he would have known already who he was and what he was destined for. If you were told when you started high school that when you graduated you were going to be the most successful (insert job title) in the United States, how hard would you continue to work? Knowing this, would you go on to college?

The Matrix is about life. In life we all have choices to make, and the choices we make define our successes and failures. Which pill will you take? Or should I say, “Which path will you choose?”

Like the road less traveled, the red pill represents the rough side of the mountain, the ups, downs, good, grimy and bad. With this choice, there is no certainty, except that you will truly know what you are made of when you complete the journey. Taking the blue pill will yield no surprises at all, for with this choice you already know the outcome, and with this choice there are no challenges. As Trinity said to Neo, “You’ve been down that road, you know exactly where it leads.”

Now that you have made this choice, what are you going to do with it?
Though all the questions you may have about the Matrix will not be answered by watching the trilogy one or two times, taking the time to unlock the secrets within the Matrix will allow you to unlock the secret meaning of what life is and what it is all about. The true question you should be asking is “What have I learned about myself?” The answer you will find will surprise you, as you discover (as I did) your original concept of the Matrix may grow much deeper and more important than you originally envisioned by helping you discover the inner you.

Written: October 30th, 2005

Critique this work

Click on the book to leave a comment about this work

All Authors (hi-speed)    All Authors (dialup)    Children    Columnists    Contact    Drama    Fiction    Grammar    Guest Book    Home    Humour    Links    Narratives    Novels    Poems    Published Authors    Reviews    September 11    Short Stories    Teen Writings    Submission Guidelines

Be sure to have a look at our Discussion Forum today to see what's
happening on The World's Favourite Literary Website.