Memorial

The second ultimate work of art.

In Star Trek Voyager, Season 6 Episode 14, “Memorial”, the spaceship's crew experiences unexpected memories of a massacre. They remember the killing of dozens of innocent people. Those memories put the crew in deep pain.

Later on, they discover that their memories were created by this structure:

Star Trek Voyager Memorial 0 Star Trek Voyager Memorial 1

A civilization has erected this monument. It emits a signal throughout the system. Anyone who comes close enough will experience memories of the massacre.

Star Trek Voyager Memorial 2

The structure contains a synaptic transmitter, says Seven of Nine, a member of the crew. It was designed to send neurogenic pulses throughout this system.

This device makes visitors remember arbitrary events. If the device was configured to generate memories of a massacre, a visitor would get a vivid memory of a disaster and feel the loss of many loved ones.

Words alone cannot convey the suffering.

Words alone cannot prevent what happened here from happening again.

Beyond words lies experience.

Beyond experience lies truth.

Make this truth your own.

I think such a device would constitute the second ultimate work of art. It maps directly to the emotional structures of the mind and creates any emotion the author intends to.

The ultimate work of art would be to capture and rebuild the emotion itself.

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