Friday, September 09, 2011

A Conversation

A Woman: How long did it last?
A Man: It was over in a few months, but it lasted a lifetime. Do you think I am romanticising?

The Woman: Oh dear, never mind what I think. Why should you care? Do you regret it?
The Man: Saying that I regret it would mean I am willing to make amends. I am not. I do not believe one can change the past. There is a certain finality to it. It simply exists, like this present, and every other moment in time. Even if one could go back there, one would invariably end up reliving it. So in the restricted sense of the term, I do not regret it.

W: Of course the past doesn't change. How else would you have it? The arrow of time marches on, isn't that they said? Shouldn’t it be more like 'the arrow of time stays frozen forever'? Waiting for you to illuminate just a blip on its immense expanse?
M: Ah, now you see that remorse is often overrated. Over-regretted anyway. I believe I could not have said it better!

W: (Smiles) Believe. (She rolls her tongue over the word, as if getting a sense of its varied contours) Do you believe in what you say? These mannerisms or ideas - are they not mere affectations? How can you be sure?
M: Can I be vague? (Chuckles). Can one be sure of anything but what exists in the mind? I believe they call it solipsism. I am not that extreme. But there is a certain degree of blind faith involved. Identity is crucial. Some people know they have a fake one. That is okay. But not being able to believe in oneself is dangerous thing to confess to. Even to oneself. Hey, are you even listening to me?

W: Oho! Of course I am. Are you saying all this to satisfy me?
M: Uhun. We are here to rationalise. You are not a part of the equation.

W: Better. Tell me more about your work. What do you do?
M: Oh dear, now why would you ask me that? Geez, I have been branded as a person who does not attach a lot of importance to actions. In my defence, all I can say is that actions can be measured, cited, controlled and undone. Thoughts and ideas, even when policed, can not be forced. There is something beautiful about that. I like to stake my paltry claim to that beauty.

W: What are you, an 'Orwellian'? Dreamer?
M: I don't even know what that is supposed to mean. You haven't read him, have you? I loved 1984 though. I like the idea that sanity doesn't need to be statistical. Though there is no way of proving it, I'd like to believe an objective reality exists outside the mind.

W: You are being evasive, as usual. Come on, this is not an inquisition, you know. Why does it have to be a question of 'either' and 'or'? One can be part of something beautiful without being merely an armchair intellectual.
M: You are a shrewd observer. Hence, my self-loathing.

W: That's all you've got to say?
M: I guess so. Is it working? My mojo? Anyway, I have a question for you. Do you think vice and instinct are the same? It's not a digression, I promise you.

W: Under the spreading chestnut tree / I sold you and you sold me
M: Excuse me?

W: Nothing really. It's a silly rhyme I learnt when I was little. There are these two people, you see. Obviously, they have to be in love with each other. But then they are forced to face their worst fears one day and in that moment of panic they somewhat betray one another. Having surrendered to impulse and consequently plagued by guilt, both of them drift apart. Just like that.
M: I see. It's an interesting anecdote. I sold you and you sold me. It's got a nice ring to it in any case. So your answer is a yes?

W: I wish it were that easy. Instincts are nature but vice is all nurture. In our world, they have somehow come to mean the same. The blame partially lies on morality and religion. They brand traits as virtue or vice. It's a pity really. You seem to agree, don't you?
M: Absolutely. But you know the worst part? This rationalisation is not in the fashion of helping me escape any of that guilt. Pity, really.

W: Yes, we are not strong enough. Even reason does not help our case here.
M: And so it goes. Care for a cup of tea?

W: You don't drink tea. (Rolls eyes).
M: And you don't have to be so mean. Come on now.

0 *ahem* comment(s):

Post a Comment