Matt, at first, had been impressed with his simple gift. It had seemed like a really nice pair of earphones. He had used them, sure - listened to a few songs on his phone, even watched a few movies - but Matt knew not to trust too much in his own experience. Initial impressions, after all, are deceptive. Easy to misconstrue based on our own subjective experience.
Matt had been skeptical that the AirPods would easily drive him into an endless, wordless trance like he had heard other people describe, but so far the experience had been quite the opposite. Why were they so quiet? The way he had been thinking about it, they were supposed to passively filter out all the ambient noise and focus on the music - but so far they didn't seem to be doing that at all.
He put on the earphones and pressed the button to play his three-and-a-bit songs from YouTube - and then he remembered: he already had those files on his iPod which he could just play directly from. It was as if this pair of AirPods was a strange gateway to an almost - unimaginable new world. But maybe he could just download some MP3s and get the same experiences?
Matt had no reason to believe this would work - but he knew he needed to try.
He put on the AirPods and began meditating.
The room around Matt had become paler, less defined. He could feel a cool sensation flowing around him, almost like he was in the ocean. The sounds and ideas of his room had vanished - and now only his consciousness existed.
The music that he was listening to played on.
Suddenly it clicked - he was experiencing the real world. This is where everything comes from and goes to - but surely he was the only one who had ever asked to see it. He realized why few people could have this power - this tenuous awareness.
It was too much for the human mind to handle. All the time, with every breath, he had been drowning in a torrent of sensations that his senses could never hope to properly process. He had been arguing with himself, over and over, about all the minutiae of everyday life. What did any of that matter, when the world around him was so much more?
But here, now, he was okay - and he finally felt that he understood everything. He was at peace - but for the first time, he had begun to think about how he could bring others here.
It had to be now, as the meditative music played in his ears. These were the true sounds of the world, and he would begin to bring his friends here. If he could do this much alone, surely more people could.
He held his hands out in front of him, and sure enough, his AirPods lay there resting in the palms of his hands.
For this couple of seconds, he thought that he could do this.
Here, now, Matt was happy.
There are different frameworks, and knowing which is right for you can be challenging.