The Hoax of Creativity

Creativity is hugely discussed in society of today, perhaps partly due to the rising industry of so called “creative careers”. This can include the more traditional jobs in the field such as acting or writing but also, from a modern day perspective, self employment in video making, blogging, photography, or styling alias content creators and influencers. But are these careers and people really creative? What even is creativity today? Is it all just a hoax?

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Creativity is defined as “the use of imagination or original ideas to create something” and is referred to as a synonym for inventiveness. The terminology is used left and right, often praised in the process of creation. New ideas and procedures are obviously a huge part of a progressive society and in shifting history, evolving and developing, but also often talked about as crucial in creating something of real value. And sometimes this is true, old can’t compete with new. Introducing new ideas can be paradigm shifting and hugely benefitting in various fields, both in societal and artistic matters, it’s the fundamental basis of science and its discoveries. Medicine, technology, ideology, and human experiences are all built upon the result of change, the result of creativity.

However, as the saying continues, new can’t compete with old. Creativity is not necessary in the process of creation and sometimes completely useless for the result of production and its value doesn’t rely on creativity. In matters of for example literature, history proves otherwise. The larger amount of history of literature is solemnly based upon author’s ability to constantly build and refer their works to writers before them; in certain time periods, showing any kind of originality was frowned upon and showcased that the writer didn’t have the knowledge of previous work or the ability to use them. The Divine Comedy (1320) by Dante is the perfect example of this, a piece of literature highly praised for its greatness but still a product of previous work, primarily The Aeneid by Virgil written 25 B.C (which obviously also was a product of previous works, in this case referring to The Iliad and The Odyssey written by Homer circa 700 B.C). And this is the case of creation even today, in all fields viewed as creative. Writing and composing music is always done in the framework of rhythm and a set of rules regarding the structural integrity. An actor follows notes and instructions from the director, who follows the written screenplay by the writer who often adapt and base their work upon a book which I’ve already established is in most cases a product of previous work. But this relationship of creativity is also dynamic, as it has many levels to it. A product or other creation is separated into different aspects, and the amount of creativity used in the process can vary for the same very matter. However, while a creation can be hugely original in its format, perhaps a movie shot in one sequence (which by this time has already been done various times) or a book written in white ink that only reflects in the sun or whatever, the themes of all creation are seldom truly original. This is what usually is referred as genres. Love and relationships, family conflicts, the different classes of society, war and political conflict, industrialisation and technology, materialistic matters such as money, or even creation itself (and so much more). These are all recycled endlessly throughout the different forms of creation, mostly due to the limited experiences of humanity. This can even be said in modern day “creative” fields amongst content creators and influencers. Playing specific games such as Minecraft, The Sims, or Fortnite; showcasing what’s in someone’s bag, talking through a brands new collection of lipstick, or doing a seasonal look book; sharing food recipes, mystery ingredient challenges, and tasting videos. And furthermore. It’s been done to an excessive amount in the last perhaps 10 years, so showcasing the insides of one’s bag is in fact not a very creative piece of work.

So why do people automatically associate the work of creation as a whole as something undoubtedly creative? Perhaps due to the attitude towards the word creativity. There’s a very mysterious, almost magical aura around the term creativity and people associated with it. Singers, authors, directors, actors, and now also influencers of social media are all portrayed as the stereotypical imagery of the creative, often damaged, loner doing their jobs with a wine glass in one hand and cigarette, perhaps even a joint, in the other having an experience and putting that into their works. A magical stardust that leads them in their lives and work that creates wonders, but can also be easily lost. Writer’s block is viewed almost as a disruption of the soul and its connection to this magical process of creation. A shift or error in the communication of the universe. A sign from the stars. (Perhaps they’re actually tripping?). But all of this is obviously not true. Creativity is not tied to specific work fields or people doing these jobs. Creativity shouldn’t even be viewed as a personality trait, since it’s not absolute. No one can be constantly creative. It’s more of a state of mind, that can be used in fields of writing or acting but equally as well in teaching or data programming. It doesn’t even have to be used in the original context of creating a product, but rather in the more metaphorical kind, such as problem solving. Someone can be very efficient at problem solving in data programming, but that wouldn’t be called creativity but rather cleverness.

However, possibly surprising, not being creative don’t equal not being successful or creating meaningfully. As mentioned before, Dante became a literary figure associated with greatness and perfection even if his books were fanfiction of Virgil. Gaming videos are the most watched on the entirely of Youtube with Felix Kjellberg, otherwise known as PewDiePie, on the very top, being the most subscribed to channel of the entire platform. Furthermore, the quality of creation isn’t fundamentally built upon creativity. Quality and creativity aren’t mutually exclusive, but simultaneously not mutually inclusive as well; but rather separate and sometimes combined. Some of the best works in any field are the well composed intertextual creations, filled with references to previous creators. Certain concepts and procedures of production are much more suitable for human consumption, even if they’re not creative. People will also appreciate certain recycled genres in much larger amount than they care for new. Stories of love have always existed and will probably never die, but books or movies about robot invasions are a fairly new invention due to technology advancement that also might collapse with further advancement. Repetitiveness isn’t as negative as it might appear, for example songs about selfies will definitely, hopefully, die out.

Let’s reserve the label of creativity for the truly creative, not for elitism but for logic and for dismantling the stigma around creating; for the fear of creating in a world that demands constant creativity even though it’s never a necessity but rather a unwritten law. And let’s scrap the idea that some people are naturally creative and praised beyond the statuses of Gods because of it. Even Apollo, the actual God of music, probably wrote his pieces and performed not solemnly creatively, but rather based upon a set rules of music. Be like Apollo. Create both creatively and uncreatively. Let’s raise a glass for that, to the hoax of creativity!

Adrian

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Love Hurts and Other Relationship Myths

Relationships and love are probably the biggest complications of life, especially romantic ones. Presumably, these complications are not all natural occurrences created by nature or mutations of evolution; but rather subconscious, or even conscious, societal impact. Many of them nicely disguised as catchphrases easy to remember and constantly thrown into everyone’s faces, making them appear to be guidelines of the unwritten book of how to live happily even though they’re mostly pure fiction and, ultimately, myths of nonsense.

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Love hurts – this is simple, love is just an emotion. A physical reaction, a rush of chemicals. This emotion is naturally associated with happiness, if the feeling of loving someone is troublesome that’s lovesickness or other physiological manifestations. But the idea of loving as an hurting emotion? There’s definitely truth in that love might bring pain, in the context of a relationship. Relationships are messy and complicated, people tend to hurt each other both with and without intent. That might hurt, but the feeling of love? No. Should a relationship always produce an emotion of unease, due to the massive passion that drains you emotionally, physically, perhaps even “soulfully”? Also, no. So, while being in a relationship might hurt at times, the feeling of love and the majority of the relationship shouldn’t.  

The woman is always right – in the heterosexual paradigm (because in relationships with either none or only women this doesn’t really apply) this is a prominent occurring phrase, often seen as “objective truth”. The thesis is hugely based on matters being solidified to absolutes. The first one being that there’s always right (and therefore wrong) to every situation, which there isn’t. Life, relationships, and situations are far more often nuanced and require complicated answers, emotions, and discussions. Another aspect of this is the lack of equality in the analysis. While I cheer men who identify power in women, this is not the way to reach gender equality in neither society nor romantic relationships. Women are people, equally (ironic) as complicated, nuanced, and fully as other people, including men.

The best relationships require the least amount of work – this is something that I’ve encountered numerous times, even though there isn’t a very well rehearsed phrase for it; people thinking that the best of relationships are simply “natural” by everything falling into place without having to put in emotional work. That the chemistry is so strong that the burden of work isn’t needed, that if anything is “forced” it’s not a relationship to strive for. This is, in my humble opinion, ludacris and absolute nonsense. Having a intimate and trusting romantic relationship built on friendship and companionship is not something that comes easily, simply because most people don’t trust others off the bat of meeting them and engaging with them, it’s a process. Also, in a relationship that is intended to last for longer than the honeymoon phase, emotional work is essential since that shimmer of amorous eternity fades simply because the body can’t obtain that feeling for longer than a set timeframe (people who claim to have been in the honeymoon phase for longer than one and a half year is lying).

Happy wife, happy life – this idea of constantly pleasing your spouse to obtain happiness is a process of completely diminishing oneself into a subhuman, a co-dependent of any other kind. Life contains of more experiences, and in many aspects more important, than having and maintaining a romantic relationship. And even when being in a romantic relationship, the most important part of it is not to please the other person(s). Personal happiness can’t rely only on external factors such as romance, because if it’s taken away there wouldn’t be anything left. Romantic relationships can be a massive part of leading a happy, fulfilling life, but life shouldn’t be dedicated to please another human being regardless of how strong the love is.

People (will) change for love – the emphasis of this point is the word will, since this is not a set point of nonsense. Some people choose to change for love, then in matters that they prioritise less than the relationship. But if the change they’re being asked to make is a massive part of their identity, upbringing, or life that they either value higher than the person they’re in love with or see no real reason to the requirement of change they most likely won’t change. As mentioned earlier, love isn’t everything, so to naturally throw oneself into submission of moulding into the other person’s needs and desires is neither healthy nor realistic. And on the topic, being in a relationship doesn’t naturally allow to require change. It isn’t a human right to have someone change for you, and being with someone who you would want to change fundamentally or completely isn’t the right relationship or person.

Jealousy is healthy – this is one of the biggest myths and tragedies of relationships. Indeed, feelings of jealousy are very common and often play a huge role of most relationships, however it shouldn’t be thrived for or admired. To be jealous is not an act of love, being that people love each other more if they’re jealous, and that this idea is hugely normalised and even romanticised today is actually really tragic. Jealousy is an emotion born and bred out a discommunication in the relationship, often distrust in the partner or oneself’s ability of being loved and cared for. Lack of confidence, fear of abandonment, or unease in the relationship due to conflicts or such matters can all lead to personal discomfort and then being transformed into jealousy. People don’t love you more because they’re jealous, they’re simply more insecure.

Soulmates – simply just that, soulmates. This doesn’t really need a grand gesture of philosophical thinking and personal opinions to disprove, only simple logic. One, there’s no such thing as a soul and even if they did exist this idea is based on the matter that souls both have to and are able to coexist in a magical sphere joined but also separate due to their hosts not being the same person. Two, the idea of soulmates also require the idea of a deterministic rather than a spontaneous natural order. Not only a creationist such as Allah/God/Jehovah/Yahweh, but one who has formed each and every individual with another individual in mind rather than the process of evolution and its mutation and natural, spontaneous development. Three, the belief in soulmates is exclusive to a narrow view of sexuality. It doesn’t speak about polyamory, does a person have multiple soulmates in such cases? Or is one better than the rest? How would that be fair? Furthermore, the idea of soulmates also exclude people identifying on the spectrum of asexuality. If there’s no desire to have a romantic relationship, does one still have a soulmate? Who will this soulmate end up with, if their soulmate doesn’t want them? In summary, the soulmate paradigm speaks only to the monogamous and people with a strong sense of sexual sexuality, which disproves the idea of it being a generalised “truth”. Four, in a hypothetical scenario, a parallel universe, where soulmates could exist, on a planet of 7.5 billion people, what are the odds of meeting one’s soulmate? Author and scientific theorist and engineer Randall Munroe explores this matter in his book What If? (2014), amongst others things, and calculates a hypothetical scenario of people having multiple possible soulmates, but even when a person lock eyes with 500 000 people in their lifetime the mathematical possibility still calculates that finding your one true soulmate is 1 in 10 000. That’s an advantage of 0.01 percent. And with such calculations, it’s made fairly easy to state that the idea of a soulmate is mathematically not impossible but ridiculous, especially if this data is compared to the numbers of people living in happy relationships today.

Adrian

Documentaries To-Be-Seen

My love for films also extend greatly beyond the fictive narrative, a well produced documentary can easily be as joyful or heart breaking as another film about falling in love. Some of my best film experiences are even documentaries, as they are spellbinding with their storytelling while also shedding light upon reality as it is and not what it could be. With that being said, my to-be-seen list of documentaries is rapidly growing, so here’s a slice of the wonders I intend to embark upon in the nearest future.

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The first installment of this series, released on Netflix in 2015, is in my top 5 best on screen experiences, so when the announcement of the follow up series releasement reached my conscious I was obviously thrilled. The previous season had me shaken to my roots, quivering with rage and empathy, mostly at the same time. It’s a massive queue to the American system of bureaucracy and law, and how equality is still very far off in the distance. And I expect the second season to be even more complicated, nuanced, and in depth about the inner beliefs of the state of freedom.

 

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The documentary of Icarus was presented to my through a recommendation in a YouTube video, and has been on my to-see list ever since. It’s not really a matter I usually find interesting, that being both sports and its related drugs, but branching out is usually a good decision, trying to explore and understand matters other than my personal interests. And similarly to Making A Murderer, this investigates bureaucracy and its hidden massive flaws which is hugely impactful on me, so this is actually a well chosen documentary to see. The movie poster for the documentary is also clever as few and hilarious while also simultaneously being clean cut gorgeous, hats off!


For the Love of Spock
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Browsing for new series and movies to see I accidentally stumbled across this documentary, an exploration and depiction of Leonard Nimoy and his portrayal of Spock. The inner geek of me was immediately drawn to the subject, so it ended up on my to-watch-list. A fun side note is that the documentary was actually mentioned on the sitcom The Big Bang Theory, in an episode where the character Sheldon Cooper is interviewed by Adam Nimoy (who directed the documentary even in real life) and the Star Trek actor Wil Wheaton (but who isn’t in the documentary). But even though Sheldon isn’t appearing in the actual documentary, Jim Parsons (the actor who plays him) is interviewed. Altogether, this documentary has so many levels of geek that watching it is inevitable.

Adrian

The Power of Moral

In Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (2014) the author Yuval Noah Harari claims that the fundamental reason humans has established their place on top of not only the food chain but enslaving the entire planet to their advantage, is the human only ability of imagination. All species of animals can work together in groups, but only up until the membership of the group reaches the mark of 150 individuals (depending on the specific species). However with imagination, the idea of a social construct, such as a company or a nationality, humans have the advantage of crossing that mark of 150 members, and are able to trust and work together in spirit of the construct in a much larger scale. This is the fundament of the existence of any kind of construction today, the nations, laws, and social norms all function in today’s society because all accept the imagination of that they exist.

Another, perhaps equally important, aspect to why society as a concept still works, regardless of personal believes, is the usage of moral. The dichotomy of the good and the bad. With everything humans encounter comes a moral code, even if the actual matter is neutral. For example, the action of having sex is neutral, however humans have associated it with a strong morality. A lot of times having and enjoying sex is punished by feelings of guilt and shame, the activity can be seen as disgraceful or even disgusting, and ultimately being categorized as bad. So regardless of individuals’ personal opinions on sex, humanity has used the tool of moral to collectively silence anything regarding the matter. Similarly to Harari’s explanation of imagination’s importance to society, morality and the dichotomy of good and bad is also as configuring to the civilisation of humankind.

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Importantly noted, imagination and morality are perhaps in their nature separated, but in society they thrive of each other, along each other, and because of each other. The result of human imagination creates systematic order, which morality solidifies in the human collectives’ mindset, which can be interpreted as both immensely damaging and, actually, freeing and fulfilling. They create society as humans know it today, in its absurdity but also in its sanity. The imagination of law forces people into submission to act or restrain to do so, and morality strengthens this. People choose not to act if law prevents it, but thinks of the action accordingly to the morality attached to it. For example, most people choose not to steal from others because they can be punished for proceeding it but they also would never choose to do so even if told they could because of the moral code of it (“thou shalt not steal”). Morality also play a huge role in emotional matters, since people in this example also would restrain from stealing even if it benefited themselves due to emotions such as empathy. And while the moral debate of stealing (or anything, really) is a never ending black hole of philosophical thinking, supposedly most people don’t mind following this order of moral since society arguably benefits from it. However, to determine what moral code benefit society is another moral discussion in itself, with no definitive answers. While legalising and respecting all people regardless of socioeconomic status is a given for some people, it is seen as the biggest of sins for others, a disputation created by different morality.  

Nonetheless, as with everything, both the imagination and morality undergo immense change. Laws and structures change, morality as well. In a democratic nation people are responsible for electing the path of change regarding politics, law, and societal structures, and most people happily believe in voting, but most of those people might also be newcomers to trying to alternate morality, due to feelings of shame. Talking openly about one’s experiences with matters morality forbids or associate with shame and/or guilt feels hugely personal and too intimate, and living fully accordingly to the inner self (a highly debatable terminology, feeling rather too spiritual for my like) is rare. However, if democracy is ever so interesting to preserve a shift is desperately needed. The revolution of politics is dependent on morality to also undergo a transformation, as, as stated earlier, they thrive off each other. With a shift of morality humankind could finally, as a whole, accept and respect people regardless of socioeconomic status, end weaponry war to instead lead global discussions in situations of disputation, and radically change society to better the environment rather than destroying the planet. Because actions like these require massive political reformations, that in a democratic state will not be put into action unless people choose to vote with these matters in mind. If voting matters, altering morality must as well.

Adrian

Jonathan Safran Foer

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A favorite author of mine is Jonathan Safran Foer, due to his ability to portray something so specific, and not at all generalised, with an endless sea of details and quirks, but simultaneously deliver the most relatable and deep cutting of emotions. His writing is hugely personal, to the point that it feels impossible to define the group of people he intends to target his work to if not only himself. The characters in his stories are real people, living real lives, and having real experiences, that are messy and complicated and sometimes not understandable. His expressions of creativity is not for everyone, but the inner works and stories of his words capture the most human experiences of our time and do so with such intense, alternative means.

His debut novel Everything is Illuminated was released in 2002 and was immediately hugely discussed in the roam of literature, establishing Safran Foer as a cultural centrepiece of alternate authorship. The book is a culmination of his personal style of writing, being two parallel stories of different aspects of Jewish history and heritage; telling stories of personal discoverings and complex emotions and relationships. The scheme of this continued in his next coming novel Incredibly Loud & Extremely Close (2005), which portray a post-nine eleven tale of a child learning to live without his father as a result of the events simultaneously dealing with his extreme mannerism and social behaviours. Safran Foer constantly speaks volume in matters of identity, family, relationships, and grief, but does so in stories and artwork that is completely his own. In his latest novel Here I Am (2016) he succeeds to depict the fall of a relationship and the depiction of the chemistry between the married couple that fades away with small actions is some of the most uncomfortably real illustrations of a dysfunctional relationship, leaving me feeling sick while reading. Actually sick.

“You’re not making sense”
“I’m making perfect sense. I would have respected you so much more if you’d fucked her. It would have proven something to me that I have found harder and harder to believe”
“Which is?”
“That you’re a human being”
“You don’t believe I’m human?”
“I don’t believe you’re there at all”

Safran Foer is probably most known for his non-fiction book that is Eating Animals (2009), a modern classic in the genre of literature about the meat industry and vegetarianism and/or veganism. It’s a recollection of his personal journey with the matter, discovering and uncovering different aspects of the phenomenon through notes from actually breaking in to meat factories, a peek into his family’s historical relationship with food, and his relationship with parenthood. The scheme of Safran Foer’s writing is equally present in his non-fictive work, as Eating Animals delivers the same amount of personal but oddly generalised view of the matter. His personal stories intertwine with the massive framework of research, completed with illustrations by Tom Manning to visuals certain fact, which creates a much more nuanced perspective in the discussion of eating animals. His work combines the factual, objective with the personal, subjective to fully understand the different aspects of eating and not eating meat, and how to comprehend the alternative. The book also discusses other matters of animal welfare, like raising questions of hierarchy amongst animals in relationship with humans (why most people never could consider eating dogs, but chooses to eat other animals without hesitation). The discussion is intricate and delicate really understanding the personal aspect of meat consumption, but never shying away from the issues with it. The book also cultivated in the production of a documentary with the same title discussing the same matter, Eating Animals (2018), co-narrated by Safran Foer and actor Natalie Portman, a well known animal activist and vegan, the latter due to the book of Safran Foer.

Safran Foer is one of my favorite authors since his work offers an alternative outlook upon literature, an aspect crucial to his novels that is rare amongst writers, the relatability of the unique. The stories and characters don’t always resonate with me and my personal experiences, but the emotions created within the pages of his books are as real as the emotions of my close friends and family, or even myself. The emotional impact he has the reader is remarkable in its depth and lasting effect. The crippling sensation of reading Eating Animals for the time in 2015 remains with me to this day, and staring into the cover of Here I Am brings me nausea of remembering the heartbreak of reading it. A heartbreak I never wish undone.

Adrian

Writing: Power and Catharsis

Writing as a phenomenon aims to createletters or characters that serve as visible signs of ideas, words, or symbols”, and is at its core a form of communication of the human verbal language. It’s a strategy, a simple matter of putting the spoken into specifically defined curbs of the visual, and is used on a daily basis by a great majority of people. It’s proceed in grocery lists, sticky notes, recollections of information, and a constant back-and-forth messaging. However, the idea of writing is most often associated with creativity, as the most simple of matters have become an industry of imagination. Writing, the formality of the term, has transformed into a form of art, which has made it more unaccessible, not for the public, but for the artists among us. However, this is not the only way to observe and use the tool of writing.

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George Orwell awed humanity with his novels about the totalitarian state, Malala Yousafzai used writing to solidify her activism and tell the story of rebellion, and Harriet Beecher Stowe was once called “the little lady who started the great war” by Abraham Lincoln for contributing to the war and the dismantling of slavery by writing her famous novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin from 1853. Writing and the written words are not only forms of art, but a tool of influence, and furthermore power. A common saying of writing is that the pen is the most powerful weapon (“The Pen is Mightier than the Sword”), also recurring in 1900s feminist theory with authors such as Virginia Woolf, Simone de Beauvoir, and Elin Wägner. These historical people of immense political influence all built their careers and rewrote the norms of society through their authorship, proceeding in the aim of writing by presenting ideas of priorly rarely discussed matters of women’s independence, gender as a social construct, and women’s collectives. And while the mentioned authors proceed their writings with artfulness, this depicts a reality in which writing necessarily isn’t centered around creativity, but rather only tool of presenting ideas and gaining influence and therefore power.

Writing can also be a form of therapy, a cleansing experience, catharsis. This can be done in various manners, but the most common one is journaling. To regularly use writing to communicate one’s thoughts and experiences in personal means is a tool to structuralize the brain into order and logic, transforming complex emotions into words and letting them be held by the fragile structure of a book spine; that is the most simple form of multiplex therapy. And to deepen this argument, the cleansing experience isn’t limited to the highly personal containment of a journal. The term catharsis originates from the works of Aristotle, in his Poetics (335 B.C) he established the notion of the expression to be the cleansing that comes with the production or consumption of art, primarily literature. The modern definition of the word is “purification or purgation of the emotions (such as pity and fear) primarily through art”.

Catharsis as a terminology isn’t targeted at the writing of personal matters, but the cleansing experience of the writing that is meant to and later proceeded to be published for other’s consumption. The original purpose was never specified to whom the terminology was created for, so the purpose of the act is only interpreted by literary scholars. It can be said to be a crucial part of authors’ processes of writing, for the finest literature is created through the purification of the soul, or also be a method for the audience to experience such powerful emotions and be cleansed by it, historically often during theatre shows.

Writing can be explained as the most complex form of art, since it forces humans to articulate emotions and thought processes perhaps too dynamic and abstract for the verbal communication that demands elaborate specification. However this is the ultimate form of expression, simply due to the complicated and patency of it. No other art form demands the same amount of sure instinct than writing, regardless of it being the most personal notes in a journal, a political statement, or a novel.

Adrian

 

Getting Over Someone: A Phantom

The endings of romantic relationships are often met with the comforting promises of moving on with life and being able to getting over them, which is basically a short term promise of a solution to eradicate the pain of the moment but overlooking the nuanced reality to come. Relationships are never to be left fully behind, that is the truth, regardless how much it hurts or how much someone wishes it to go away.

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Ask yourself, how many previous partners or lovers have you really erased? Not just by physical matters, of not seeing them and deleting their number or even disposing of everything they ever touched in your home, but of mental matters. Do they never, ever appear in your thought processes? Because even if they appear just as a name of a distant period in your life, they’ll still be there. The impact people have on others is not only in their presence in the flesh, but in the memories of times when they were present. And most of all, the impact they have had on oneself. Some experiences and relationships, even though past, are a crucial part of the embodiment of the self; perhaps even negatively. Certain relationships bring fear and anxiety long after they are dissolved. And relationships that were especially happy, even if ended on good terms, bring on massive impact. Even if it’s with certainty one is unwilling to once again have a previous partner in one’s life again, neither as a lover nor as a friend, the relationship that was and the emotional impact it inflicted will forever remain.

To forever cherish a previous partner for the relationship in the past is a matter that is seldom brought attention to in films, literature, or other forms of medias, however there’s a prime example that dedicate its entire existence to the topic; Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004). The movie sets place in a reality in which completely moving on from a previous partner is provided by a service that offer the possibility to erase memories, often used to ease the pain and suffering. This explores the human attitude towards previous romantic experiences and raises the awareness that even in pain, the experiences of the past shape the present and by removing the past including all the suffering the reality of now drastically changes. This is not a very unfamiliar topic, as its heavily explored in other matters than specifically eradicating memories of previous loved ones. Numerous films and books have explored the idea of time travelling to change certain aspects of the past, only to find that it’s impossible to proceed without severe consequences. This is the same with “fully moving forward” with previous romantic relationships, it’s not fully possible, and if it was, all the learnings and experiences would spill to waste and change the course of people’s emotional development to greater relationships, perhaps forcing them into similar situations that they previously left.

To argue this is not the equivalent to state that it’s impossible to no longer hold massive emotional attachment towards other people, in this matter the simplicity of “moving on” from people is true. It is fully possible to live fully without constantly being caught up by memories of previous relationships, and above all; even if emotional attachment still exists, it morphes with time and experiences. A previous lover can still be looked back on with love and trust, but not necessarily in the same gaze of present romantic love and need of attention. It can be in the form of acceptance, and cherishment of what used to be rather than wishing it would have continue. Even painful memories can change, sometimes the scene of suffering morphes into something that teaches us life long lessons, or the emotion changes. It’s still associated with being painful, the actual pain of the moment is long accepted and moved forward from, often by processing by new memories of other people and scenarios.

Time is a parameter that constantly moves forward, however memories of experiences, emotions, and relationships are not. They can remain inside of people until end of time, and constantly be a motivation of development and change, even if the physical matter of this memory is long gone. The prior teaches us about the present and about the future, and relationships are a massive part of this, completely necessary for aspiring forward; to fully getting over someone is nothing but a phantom.

Adrian