We are memory.
This is the thought that recurs. The essence of us. What others might call our soul.
I don’t believe in the soul. But I believe in memory. And I trust in physics.
To make the point, I would ask, “Who are you without your memories?” Even our genetic blueprint is a type of memory that can be passed down from one generation to the next. But it is the memories that we can summon, consciously or unconsciously, that make us who we are, or at least who we believe ourselves to be.
And this is how we progress beyond our physical limits. In the memory of others, we become a part of them, and our death is not our end.
Our monuments, our written works, and now our everyday actions that are captured in the infosphere are the memory of humanity. Its soul. What defines us as a community, as a culture, as a species. Those memories that can be consciously or unconsciously summoned. These written words are like a fresh thought, one that may be fleeting. It takes effort to make a thought into a memory. Repetition.
I remember you, smiling, laughing, dancing! I remember the joy and the sorrow we shared. I remember your talent, your love, your excitement, your caution. I remember your touch. My love for you is my most important memory. It, above all else, defines me.
I cannot go back. Memory is formed by a physical process that comes part and parcel with our perception of time. I do not wish to go back in time, because to do so would be to unmake my memories. I only wish I could have made more memories with you, have learned more from you, become more with you.
Why do we remember? Because it makes us better able to grow. Better able to harness the potential around us. It makes us more successful in this universe. It is our survival strategy as a species. But it is not unique to us. It is how we define that which is alive.
If I wish not to remember, then I wish not to survive, not to be human. You live on in me, and in everyone who remembers you. I wish to give you what life I can, and so I remember and I share with others. This is how I ease the pain of your absence.
I know my purpose, our purpose. It is revealed in our capabilities. Our purpose does not, cannot exceed our capability. We are not here to be tested and fail. We cannot fail. Our purpose is revealed through our functioning. It is not a mystery to be kept from us.
My purpose is to remember, and in remembering, to grow. I remember you.