I hope you are all healthy and strong.
A few days ago I attended a truly unusual event: a live performance of Maria Kallas. What? She has passed years ago and therefore a live performance is not possible? Well, think again. I was there. And so was her 2D hologram… Being the first such concert that I attended, I have to admit it was the one that generated the highest number of thoughts during its course. Thoughts and questions about the event itself and the concept of bringing back to life people (famous in this case) who have died years ago and our generation didn’t have the chance to watch live.
The experience was a continuous swing from delight to doubt. Delight to see how “La Divina” moved so graciously without moving… Like the Greek goddess that she was… and doubt when she appeared on stage. What do you do exactly? Do you applaud a… hologram??? Really???? FYI we all did and I bet everyone in the room shared the same uncomfortable feeling. We were all sitting there still, in awe of a projection but it was more than just watching a video clip or something. The whole experience was designed to “take you there”. At any point we were certain that we were at the Milan Opera wearing our tuxedos. Pure artificial delight :)
And then thoughts started to hit: Kallas’ appearance/performance is the good scenario of this new trend. Given that many companies have already started to buy the rights of deceased artists in order to take their holograms to world tours, what can happen if someone decides to buy the rights of dead people that we are glad they are dead? Evil people like Hitler for example. And the scariest part is that soon (if not already) these holograms can have their own voice with the help of AI. Can you close your eyes and imagine Hitler appearing in front of thousands of real people in a square, spreading messages of hate again? How would humanity deal with such a thing? Is this the new Pandora’s box? Are we really sure we want to open it? It is probably too late now as we did already.
And if we are able today to do this with Kallas or M. Jackson or the Beatles, is there anyone who doubts that in no time this technology will become so cheap and so commercialized that it will be available to all of us, so we can feed it with some photos of our beloved deceased family member/friend and bring them back to light? Do we really want to put ourselves to the test of being able to do it and still say no? Are we sure we have the heart not to succumb to the past and our nostalgia? What about healing then? Would it be possible that we will never be able to heal anymore? Are we making sure that our wounds will always stay open?
Among the things that save us as human beings and make sure that we exist for so many years, is oblivion. The ability to forget the pain, the suffering, the grudge, the hate, the end, and move on in life. Even for the times when too many of us forget too painful events and we repeat them, even then, oblivion is good. It is the mental medicine that allows us to pick up our pieces and carry on with our lives. Little or big, poor or rich, black or white, our ability to forget has made it possible for us to be here tomorrow morning. Are we giving that ability away? Are we becoming uncomfortably immortal for the sake of a few more seconds with an image and the illusion that we can actually have a real discussion? Is this the back door to eternal suffering? Are we ready for that? Is our world changing that much? Cause if it does, then I’m afraid many of us older models might not be able to endure it. It looks more like a world of people with far less emotional dependencies and far more detachment, even though the trigger is more… attachment.
Maybe I’m just shocked by what I experienced or perhaps a bit too sensitive when it comes to letting go of the past. Forgive me. I’m just a simple romantic and I plan to continue.
On behalf of all of us here in CEO Clubs and Next Gen Leaders Hub, I wish you an amazing Xmas holiday, full of love, hugs, kisses and presents! May Santa live forever in our hearts! “Mos Craciun” :))))))))))))))))))))