The conversation under starlight

“If you could get the ability to see the future, would you?” Raj asked as he looked up to the starry night sky.

“No” Divya replied “while knowing about the future is great and all, I would rather enjoy the moment”

“What is there to enjoy in this moment?” Raj asked “you are stuck with me here in this boring camp that we haven’t even left the camp the whole day, I haven’t even gotten my job done”

“Well look at it this way, I am in your company under the light of such a brilliant sky” she said “We are having intellectual debates, what better can there be?”

“Well, I see your point” Raj said “but wouldn’t you want to see what the future holds, what kind of problems you overcome, what kind of things will you achieve?”

“As I said, I am enjoying this moment” she said.

“Wouldn’t you like to stand by my side as I receive a nobel prize or something?” he asked “Wouldn’t that be great?”

“It would be” she said “I would love to see your dreams realized but you know it does not go well for those who live too much in their dream and forget to live”

“I understand your point” Raj said “But you know with you gone, I have nothing to focus on but my dream”

There was silence on the other side.  He looks towards her, she has her arms open inviting him to hug her.

He prances on to her but can get hold of nothing but air.

He bursts into tear as he looks down at the urn that had been there all along.

 

The promise

There is something stuck in my mind recently. I don’t know how it got there or what instigated it. Whatever it is, I guess this is the right attitude to have as a story teller.

Now, I recognize that my book isn’t literary gold, it just the best thing an amateur author could put together in his spare time from school. So I guess this  sentiment comes from that.

It is ‘a promise to tell a better story’,  that’s it.

Who is that promise to? I don’t know. Maybe myself, maybe to people I love, may to the world, I don’t know. I just promise to tell a better story.

Now it doesn’t help that this thought came to me during exams but what can you do? Thoughts come at their own pace.

I guess this is the attitude I will carry or the rest of my life. Every time I make a movie or write a book, I will make a promise to tell a better story next time. No matter how good I get, I will then push myself to tell an even better story.

 

Fatal flaw

Every hero in the traditional sense has a fatal flaw. one innate quality that they cannot ignore and may be the reason behind their downfall. This quality is essential in order to create interesting characters for your story. As it provides a chink in the armor for our character that can’t be covered no matter what happens to pass.

However, this is not something that only exists in the pane of fiction, real humans have it too. Now there may be no psychological proof behind it but knowing that real humans have so many faults in their characters, it isn’t far fetched to think that there is a fundamental flaw that cannot be overcome.

As my exams inch closer day by day, I have enough empty space in my head (cause we all know nobody uses their brains during their school exams) to think deeply about my own character. I have understood that my fatal flaw is of loyalty.

I become too loyal too fast, I trust too easily and I am willing to go to war for those whom I trust. I can’t even count how many times I have put down my own work in order to help a friend. How many times I have left occasions that might help me climb the social ladder because I saw a friend lonely.

It even leaks into other facets of my life, If I like the music of one band or singer, I will stay loyal to them forever. If I like a story, I will research all the details that I can about it to the point of obsession. I guess the reason why I am an author is because I am this fiercely loyal to everything.

So, now I pass on the question to you, What is in your mind, your fatal flaw?

End of the world: Artificial intelligence

It’s 2019, The resistance fight back desperately as they run for their life in the dark cover of the night. Our robot overlords step on the skull of our fallen as they continuously shoot at us neither feeling pain nor feeling remorse.

We have explored the concept of man made machine take over us as their slaves since the beginning of science fiction itself. It embodies our fears that have been ever present since the first steam engine moved without human or animal effort.

Now, most science fiction explores how the machines would come together under one faulty AI which deems humanity unnecessary and purges humanity. Now this is not very likely to happen but regardless, the most intelligent individuals of our society have signed a contract to not develop artificial intelligence  beyond a certain point. We have been spared from this fate because of these individuals. Nobody knows how fast AI would have developed, had this contract not been signed.

Instead the real threat is that of the fact that robots are superior to us in every ways. Their skin would not burn if they approach hot zones, they can quickly take the most efficient decision, they can do all the grunt work in seconds. Slowly but surely, robots are replacing us in almost every sector of work, even jobs like administering the robots or repairing the robots.

This would mean that as our population increases, the number of jobs that are available decreases. The richest of the richest, the enterprises and the artists will benefit boundlessly but for anyone else and everyone else, technology is soon to become a curse that we can do nothing about.

But technology solves a lot of problems and in order to solve more problems, technology will have to get more complex and order to ease the load on people, artificial intelligence will have to become better. And here in lies the dilemma, if we have to solve more problems that humans face and make our lives more comfortable, we will have to develop these doom machines even further.  In order to make a better world, we must play with the chance of the end of our world.

 

End of the world: Global warming

Most educated individuals believe that global warming is actually happening. Some of them don’t believe that it is caused by human’s. Yet still, the majority of educated individuals believe that global warming is man made and is harmful to our species and other species around us. But still, what most people believe is that it is a problem that our descendants will deal in the future, what they don’t know is that it is affecting us right now.

Now, I don’t mean to fear monger on this but unlike other ways that this world could end in, I would be talking in present tense. Islands have already started sinking underwater, the Maldives are set to drown within the next decade, parts of Florida, U.S. are already under water, migratory birds and insects have been misplaced and been driven to near extinction, we are losing glaciers at an alarming rate, the number of floods is increasing, heatwaves during summer is killing people around the globe, need I go on?

On a similar note, deforestation is causing many species to go extinct at an alarming rate, causing many scientists to call it the sixth great mass extinction.

So what is the solution? Scary thing is that there is no easy solution. Most companies and governments want you to recycle your waste, reduce your electrical and car usage and planting trees. While you should be doing these things, it is not the solution, it is only going to affect global warming as much as a lotion might to a third degree burn. What needs to be done is a complete overhaul of our lifestyle. We need to shift our economy from a fossil fueled based one to a renewable source one, then replace our oil based cars to electric based ones, we need to stop using products that cause deforestation like paper and palm oil (look it up), we would need to stop eating red meat, drink milk or any dairy product, discover ways to farm efficiently on small land, reforest forests and obviously control our population.

Seems scary and impossible? Well it is but what can you do? In the coming years, we would need to try and ask for most of these things, in order to slow it down and buy time for our space programs to terraform mars or something. Oh yeah and we would have to put a lot of our money into space programs for this exact thing.

end of the world

Feeling a little morbidly curious? Well, today’ topic is about the end of all humanity, so I think that should keep you covered.

So how do you think our species will meet it’s end? An asteroid would hit us? A super massive volcano will erupt?  Aliens attack and destroy us? A virus destroys us? Or are you optimistic and think that humanity will end by evolving into another species which will then evolve into another species until the heat death of the universe?

Well, all those events are relatively unlikely. You and your descendants will most likely be safe from that. What will end us in reality are most likely our own creations. Poetic isn’t it? We will most likely craft our end.

Take your pick.

Global warming (dare you to deny it you horrible being), artificial intelligence, nuclear war, world hunger due to overpopulation or genetic modification.

All of these are things that all deserve a post of their own, and whatever, this is a series. Everything listed above will be explored deeply in their own post.

Will see you there then.

Why do we need stories?

Although most people enjoy movies, games and/or books, there are a few individuals who believe that there is no point to storytelling. It is not curing cancer or flying us to moon, why is there a need to consume any kind of a story, it is for the most part a waste of time.

To those people, I say, they do not understand how the world works and haven’t clearly experienced a great story.A great story has the ability to move people emotionally, question their reality, bring a change in their life, give them a reason to continue to exist, inspire innovations and of course entertain.

Harry Potter, although admittedly is not the best series of books or movies out there, has defined the childhood of millions of people throughout the world. Taught compassion, warned against greed, defined the meaning of love, captured imaginations, and defined a sense of morality that people have prescribed to since the first time they saw Harry receive his letter from Hogwarts. No matter how much you dislike the books or movies, you can’t deny the impact that it has had on the culture of this world.

Stories can inspire future technologies. For example, star trek inspired the creation of the first cell phones. Would they have been invented regardless? Definitely. But would it have been so early and by the same person, probably not.

Stories reflect our greatest feelings and show the culmination of our culture. They give voices to those who lack the voice, purpose to the defeated and love to the lonely. We all have memories of some or the other story affecting us in a way that we were never the same again.

So why consume stories? Because without it, there is no meaning to life. Because everything is a story, from a lie to that trip you took a while ago to how people sent the first men to moon to of course star wars and lord of the rings and catcher in the rye and harry potter and fight club and your skyrim play-through. There is something to be learnt from all stories.