Narcissus is a teenage girl. No other figure loves her; she loves herself to fill the difference. She watches herself constantly: in the darkened windows of cafés and storefronts and the silvered glass in her bathroom. Alone she pouts, minces, tosses her hair, shapes her face for every angle. She knows her good side. She knows how to move her mouth. She generates self-awareness as the world becomes aware of her.
“i’m coming back in… and it’s the saddest moment of my life.”
ed white, at the conclusion of the first american spacewalk during the gemini 4 mission on 3 june 1965.
”i didn’t feel like a giant. i felt very, very small.”
neil armstrong, on looking back at the earth from the moon in july 1969.
”when i first looked back at the earth, standing on the moon, i cried.”
alan shepard, about his time on the lunar surface during the apollo 14 mission in february 1971.
“there is perhaps no better a demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world.”
carl sagan in time magazine, 9 january 1995, describing the pale blue dot image of earth, taken by the voyager 1 spacecraft 6 billion kilometres away in 1990.
the first words spoken from the surface of the moon, by buzz aldrin on 20 july 1969 when apollo 11 landed. over six hours later, neil armstrong stepped onto the lunar surface and uttered the immortal line “that’s one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind”.
“i look up at the night sky, and i know that, yes, we are part of this universe, we are in this universe, but perhaps more important than both of those facts is that the universe is in us. when i reflect on that fact, i look up—many people feel small, because they’re small and the universe is big, but i feel big, because my atoms came from those stars.”
When I look back on my life, it’s not that I don’t want to see things exactly as they happened. It’s just that i prefer to remember them in an artistic way. And truthfully, the lie of it all is much more honest, because I invented it. Clinical psychology tells us arguably that trauma is the ultimate killer. Memories are not recycled like atoms and particles in quantum physics. They can be lost forever. It’s sort of like my past is an unfinished painting; and as the artist of that painting, I must fill in all the ugly holes and make it beautiful again.
Frequently, our only truth is narrative truth, the stories we tell each other, and ourselves—the stories we continually recategorize and refine. Such subjectivity is built into the very nature of memory, and follows from its basis and mechanisms in the human brain.
memories are dependent on us. memories are created by us. it has happened so many times that someone has described an occurrence so vividly that i’d be able to recollect and retell it as if i was there. so many times that i’ve read a story, seen a picture or heard a song, and just let it simmer in my mind. and really, if you let it set enough, what’s to say it’s any different from anything that’s happened to you physically? because that’s the real difference anyways, isn’t it? that some things happen to your body, and others to your mind. and it’s a fact that you manipulate even the memories of things that you’ve actually experienced. the remembering part is all the same. it’ll show the same on a brain scan, your body will react the same. you will feel it all the same. there is no objectivity, everything is created through you, and therefore, it’s created by you.
always remember that if you’re thinking of something, it’s happening somewhere. dimensions upon dimensions, the possibilities are endless. if you’re thinking “how come i ended up in this sucky world?”, remember that there are ones where things are so much more difficult. and no world is stagnant. your surroundings are fluid, life is changeable and there is always more. the lines between imagination and reality are actually not only blurred, but non-existent in the grand scheme of things. so don’t be afraid to imagine, to fantasize, to dream – because dreams are real too.
“A storm is coming,” Frank says. “A storm that will swallow the children. And I will deliver them from the kingdom of Bane. I’ll deliver the children back to their doorsteps. I’ll send the monsters back to the underground. I’ll send them back to a place where no one else can see them except for me, ’cause I am Donnie Darko.”