Sirwin
Sirwin
mirages

Consciousness

By Diomedes | Robert O'Reilly | 17 Jan 2024


 

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Crawling out of the slime. Devonian era, our precursor.

It was a mistake that almost erased the human race and the few of us left had but one mission in life, to correct it, or else lead lives hiding in the shadows without any purpose except survival, like animals again. But with so much history in my head and a consciousness of who we were, I had to take up the challenge to destroy Dora and AI or marry her and integrate her (you might say shackle her) with this human consciousness.

As these thoughts clarified in my head, mulling over them for so many hours and days, I realized that our experiment with Juliet, to make a robot experience human motherhood, though a step in the right direction, was only a half-measure at best, and probably only a drop in the bucket. I talked this over with Ted and Hannah. The true solution was simple and yet infinitely complex in its implementation, how to put Dora inside a human brain and make all her functionality operate through that brain, through all its quirks and emotions and insights and illusions. Only then would she truly be one of us and one step above us with her own logical wisdom and knowledge. She might even become like a goddess to us, a guide to emulate, safely, as one who could never hurt us because the bond was there.

We spent a whole month on the campus in Austin, a very pleasant one as it was fall and the weather was fair. We didn’t know what to do next so we had no agenda. So we had full leisure to do whatever we wanted, or nothing at all.

Our only concern was Juliet’s pregnancy, now into its eight month. June and Hannah did most of the tending after that. Ted and I spent long hours walking and talking, sometimes practising and improving our telepathic control over the droids going about their harmless routines all around us. I began to understand Sarah’s infatuation in controlling them. Ted spent hours trolling the data banks for the faint footprint that Dora had left in passing through this place a year before. None of his findings gave us a clue as to where she went, except for the obvious probability that she traveled further east, and from this location, northwards.

Over those leisurely weeks we slowly agreed not to travel on and stab into the continent in a blind and dangerous pursuit of Dora. Sarah was a far more personal concern and we decided to head back, retrieve her and head home where Juliet could have her baby surrounded by our whole clan, in comfort and company, not some quick pit stop on the side of a deserted highway.

We even tarried another full week after this decision was made, for two good reasons. We wanted to give Sarah more time to realize her wrong decision in leaving us and this new idea of consolidating a human mind and AI was so intriguing and complex, so novel and inviting, we were in fact mesmerized by such a prospect and spent long hours together in the cafeteria discussing it, while the droids traipsed to and fro, and brought us whatever food or drink we wanted with the blink of an eye. We were like two sets of honeymooners, Ted with his June and I with Hannah on a vacation to Europe, with no itinerary, wandering aimlessly and drinking in the wonderful scenery, our imaginations roaming free over the landscapes and sharing their vagaries as to our possible futures, with nothing set in stone as to our careers, only limitless possibilities.

So we loaded up our limo one morning and headed back west, not before Ted purloined some choice components of this hub’s computer array. Again he drove and again I sat in the back with the window down contemplating the strange desert scenes. This was the land of mirages I remembered, especially if one was crossing it on foot, thirsty and dying, with hope deceiving you to imagine a water hole just ahead.

But a mirage can have meaning and even beauty, just as any delusion, and change the course of one’s life. We are such dream enchanted and deluded beings, idiot-savants all of us, as if in a cradle of our own imagining, some of us in sublime rapture if it rocks smoothly, others in agony because it doesn’t rock, with harsh reality and too bright and cruel a light breaking in through the window, and crying for an absent mother to pull the drapes. I contemplated that I too was such a hapless babe, either fortunate or not by invisible forces, mirages, visions that either turned out to be true or false. My goal was now defined. Dora had to experience this, the roller coaster ride of life.

 

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Diomedes
Diomedes

B.A. in Latin and Greek from U.C. Berkley. Writer, Blogger and retired Electrician.


Robert O'Reilly
Robert O'Reilly

I am educated in the Western Classical Tradition, B.A. from U.C. Berkeley in Latin and Greek, English major, one year at U. of Toronto, studied under Alain Renoir and Northrop Frye, read most classics full time for many years after university in French, English, Latin and Greek to the modern day. I am interested in the near future of technology, what changes it imposes upon our heritage and character as humans. Short stories and Essays are my medium.

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