Deja Vu

[This is my Toastmasters speech that I delivered earlier today, April 18, 2013 at my local club]

Do you have that eerie déjà vu feeling sometime? Like, don’t I know this or that person from somewhere, but in reality you have met for the first time. Or, you went to a beautiful vacation spot where you have never been before, and you look at the crushing blue waves, its bubbly whitish froths and the rising sun peaking from the glowing horizon, and suddenly you remember being in that very spot, standing on the soft sands, but actually this was the first time you have visited this particular sea beach.

I find these déjà vu feeling fascinating. What is the reason of it? Is it some kind of trick that our curious mind plays on us? Is it the manifestation of brain’s synaptic circuitry’s random spike? Or is there a deeper reason behind it? Is it a glimpse of a past life, and possibly this reincarnated life has a flash from that forgotten memory?

I was watching the first season episode from a TV series called Fringe last night. In this particular episode, the FBI agent Olivia Dunham, jumps between two realities, one is her current one, and the other one is the alternative reality. The superbly genius scientist explained that in our life every action that we take it has other possibilities. An action we take, and an alternative action we could have taken creates branches in our universe, that is in some other realities, I am delivering a different speech, or even I might not have this very existence.

I found this notion quite captivating. It made sense to me. Think about the major world religions that talk about human being having the free will. We decide on every moment of our life which path to take, and which to discard without hesitation. Do I partake in the killing of animals and fish, eating their fleshes? Or do I select a different, more peaceful and sensible path? Do I voice my opinions and protest in the face of injustice, or do I act like a hopeless coward with heartless indifference? Do I work ethically and responsibly with compassion, or do I become an unethical and ruthless maniac? The choice is entirely my, but the consequences are deep and felt throughout the ages, cultures and generations.

Could the alternate realities and the déjà vu be someway related? Freudian or the Non-Freudian psychologists may have their never ending debates analyzing the root causes of these perplexing phenomena, but a simple and perhaps naive person like me, it is a good feeling realizing that perhaps other parallel realities exist, just beyond our wakeful consciousness, where different possibilities have a more democratic and just world where poverty is indeed kept in the museum, and war mongers and violence seekers’ depravity can only be read in dusty history books.

If you have that déjà vu feelings sometime, as I do in some random occasions, may be you will see things and the world a bit differently now, pondering what could have been, and what you, I and all of us still could do and achieve in our existence filled with infinite possibilities. What a wonderfully mysterious universe we all are part of! 

Long live Déjà vu!