Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Forgotten

Not so far in the future...

History and science of evolution has taught the mankind many lessons, at least that's what the written word says. One of the prominent of these is that of survival of the fittest and removal of the weakest. They say when man evolved above its Ape cousin, it dropped many features, that were deemed unnecessary for the new, cleverer creature. Tail was one of those; for man had no apparent use for the tail.

A few centuries ago, the man used to have strong memories. At least that's what a general perception floating around these days is. One of those days, the history books tell, man invented the Computer, and within a few decades it became inseparable part of the man's lifestyle. With this invention, the man surrendered his memory to the machine, and it was not long before that signs of the man losing memory were evident.

Although, we have been successful in partially restoring this God-given gift, we know that the restoration is not complete. The technology is not very advanced in this area, and it's not very uncommon that even on death-bed, after three quarters of treatment, the person finds himself in embarrassing situations, when he cannot remember his name! And that cannot be totally attributed to old-age. We believe the defect has spread into the genes, and via the genes it's spreading, and sustaining itself.

If you are wondering what happened to those machines which have helped man remember and retrieve virtually any data, an answer is due. Before I lose track of the subject, let me provide it to you: Believe me, it's a very depressing answer. We have long lost our saviors. We cannot blame them for our condition today. Once we started losing our memories due to over-use of computer's memory, we soon started forgetting their language, their passwords, and later the technology to create them. It was an embarrassing situation to be in. Absolutely. Whatever records we have today, indicate that the machines could not take up the overwhelming job of remembering more and more things of the ever growing population. And one dark day, they gave up. The disks crashed, overload continued for days together, before the whole system broke down. Although today we do have some precious resources, it is by no means sufficient for us. Thanks to them, we have been able to research our way back out of the mess. Although we are not completely out of it today, it's much better than, say, twenty years, details of which I have obviously forgotten.

Today's world is very different and why wouldn't it be? Once we realize that that we cannot remember even the most important things in life, it is by no means an easy life.
  • Industrial productivity is low: people forget to go to work... even a 60% turnout per day is considered over the roof.
  • Means of transport hardly run on time (and there are always longer queues for refunds: I wonder how people remember to get their money back for a missed ride)
  • People forget to vote their government in or out. Politicians forget their promises, tax-payers forget to pay tax, the state forgets to pay back its subjects any benefits, law-makers need frequent reminders about the prevailing laws.
  • Teachers forget to teach, student fail to appear at the exams on time (not that they remember to study at all). If they are lucky, teacher's mistakes cancel out their own, but possibility of that happening is low.
  • People find it extremely difficult to communicate for a long time, as they soon lose track of what they are speaking about!
  • Artists can no more concentrate on one piece of art for long times, so no great art creations are possible. Critiques and for-no-reason-protesters are having a good time, for nobody remembers what their earlier views were. Ditto with the politicians!
  • Crime is all over the country. The victims over time forget that they were once cheated. The criminals too forget about the loots or illegal wealth they have accumulated, although this somehow happens rarely.
  • Interpersonal relationships are difficult to sustain. People forget their identity over time, and perhaps their existence too. Father forgets his own son and the daughter forgets her mother over time.
  • People forget decency when it's warranted, and people ignore any sincere calls towards it assuming the speaker is out of his mind: quite usual. They don't co-operate any more. They choose to forget.
  • People don't and can't trust their memories. Over time, people start questioning their own memories, for they cannot confirm whether those are accurate or not.
  • People have forgotten what's right and what's wrong. People have forgotten how to laugh. They have forgotten how to sing. They have forgotten how to love and how not to hate.
Don't blame us, but we have almost forgotten what exactly we remember. This is a very grim situation, if not hopeless, that we find ourselves today in, .

It's actually a vicious circle! We have got so much used to memory loss, and we have accepted it for a fact, that we hardly care to put any effort to remember any damn thing.

We are born, we are growing up, we are dying; but all for no cause: we know that nobody will remember us! Not that everybody of the past was worth a mention in the never-ending history of mankind, there would be someone who would remember him. Today, we have lost that hope.

We are like a river, where it started nobody remembers, and where it's headed, nobody cares. We are like the afternoon wind, which doesn't remember how exactly it grew from gentle breeze, and which cannot control its own direction now.

Before I forget, let me conclude my account by saying what we always say to keep this story going. We may have forgotten all the above (whatever that was!), but we still have some hope left. Some hope that will re-ignite the spirits within. One day, we hope, that we will remember who we really are, and lay all this anarchy to rest, and allow me to make my promise, to bury all this chaos somewhere, a place which we will never ever remember again, lest it come back to haunt us.

Ah! At last, I think I have succeeded in completing my narration without loss of much detail.

If you're wondering, in this forgetful world, how I could accomplish that feat?

Well, I am guessing, but I am quite sure that for a while I forgot I was part of this world, and tried to look at ourselves from an outsider's eye!

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