Past and Present - The Recapitulation
I have an obsession with the past, to be more specific my past, highly personalized. In fact it creates an alter ego, and those blues, not music, but music of past. Yes in a way it is music.
Firstly childhood is more than a remembrance, it is an obsessive call of the past, the school days especially surface in memories and dreams. So do the childhood days of relatives, close friends and familial ties. What is this obsession for the past got to do with I ask. Why does the school surface in dreams, literally speaking, the classrooms, the fields, the school hall with brooding boys in grey green uniforms. And then some specific friends and some school mates who I was not very close to. But school perhaps ties bonds which go beyond the ephemeral and the transitory to the permanent.
Childhood friendships and even associations are perhaps the most lasting. When I go to my school alumni meets I understand the reason. Even a person whom I might not have been very close to it seems to relive the school and the classroom. Everything seems so fresh, it was like yesterday and these dreams are such. They are like yesterday like fresh water, like the bathing sunshine, like the flower in the early morning's glow.
Do we need to create a myth of the past? Do we need to create our alter egos? Like, seeing another person in ourselves or ourselves in another person or persons. I think we do. That is why Hemingway wrote such as a superior complex novel such as The Old Man and The Sea. That is why Joseph Conrad had a wish fulfillment of the past.
We see our alternate selves in other people especially younger people. Some of us feel the need to be hero worshiped, which in the final analysis is not desirable. That is why in the past I see a strange mythic relationship with surfaces in hybrid dreams or even in day dreams. Perhaps they are vestiges of the sub-conscious or even the unconscious. If the past can be very close to the present, it cannot only be re-lived but we can actually take a glimpse of its impulse which carries over to the present. I am sure Freud and Jung would have a lot to say on this. Unfortunately, they are not alive today.
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Ananya S Guha
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