How many of you know what Pensées are? Raise your hands.
"Pensées" (literally, "thoughts") is a posthumously published collection of notes made by the renowned French Philosopher, Mathematician and Physicist, Blaise Pascal, during his final years as he worked on a treatise on Christian apologetics. These contain his infamous wager/gambit.
'Meh!' You say. Rightly so.
But my Pensées - Ahem! - are going to be nothing of that sort, I assure you. It'd be more of a Penseive than anything else. You see, some of my precious thoughts - well, thoughts, opinions, rants, whatever - were stored elsewhere, comfortably ensconced inside what used to an excellent community of like-minded, intelligent, gifted individuals, scientists, researchers, educators, and so forth. At this place, I met (albeit virtually) many of these people, and made friends - at least, I'd certainly like to think so - even if I have, on occasions, vociferously disagreed with one or more of them. All in the spirit of discussion.
But nothing lasts forever.1
A fact of on-line life is that all forums and blogging platforms have one or more overlords. And sometimes, bloggers and/or commentors will have a vision for their blogs that may or may not jive well with that of those in charge. More often than not, such situations can be amicably resolved, but sometimes... sometimes the differences are too intractable, the chasm too wide to bridge.
This platform was no different. A group of prominent and talented bloggers felt that their just demands for better management and transparency had been steadfastly ignored, and the issues raised by them, conveniently burked. I won't go into the nitty-gritties here. Suffice it to say, they decided to walk out in protest. (Note: This technique, I am very familiar with. Indian politicians are always staging walk-outs from the Parliament whenever their demands are not met.)
And, of course, they decided to band together - you cannot suppress talent - et voilà! A sniny new Wordpress-aided blogging platform, Occam's Typewriter, was born, and has already made its presence felt.
All that's water under the bridge now. I don't mind admitting that for a day, I was incredibly sad. Most of the awesome individuals that I came to know through Nature Network had moved away elsewhere. It felt empty. But then I pottered over to the OccamT, and discovered that C'est la fantastique! Excellent, uncluttered design, nice interface for comments, and so forth - I didn't hesitate to dive in. The comment moderation is a bit of a sore point with me, but I understand the necessity at this stage. Perhaps it'd go away soon.
However, the whole incident gave me a pause. Perhaps I should be taking care in preserving my (admittedly meager) thoughts and opinions that I had once poured into the former platform, as well as those of the people that took time to respond in the comments?
Hence, Pensées. That's a fancy way of saying that I'd make this trusty old Blogger space a sort of blogdump for my posts and associated comments from the other place. Just in the event that one day in future, I, too, am cast out on a deserted island, I shall know that I, at least, have been able to keep an archive of precious thoughts. For posterity. Or posterior. Depends.
I, of course, have no freakin' clue how I am going to accomplish this, but Copy-and-Paste is always a start.
1: On Change
'Tis amazing how time does fly,
Leaving behind just trails - memories.
Days arrive and days pass by;
Seasons change and scenery varies,
From dull, dark, grey to vibrant, bright,
In different shades of color and hue.
Life moves on with scant respite -
Old order yields its place to the new.
The world's in the throes of a turbulent time.
Warring nations, inimical factions,
Poised to strike - without reason or rhyme:
Total lack of restraint, in words or actions.
Suspicion, greed, envy, lust ensnares
And consumes all - This is insanity.
But no one to redress, no one cares
For the wails of cornered humanity.
Dwindling values on the tottering base
Of a lax society, depravity galore;
Virtues, honesty, compassion - nary a trace,
Nothing appeals to the heart any more.
Yet we live on, we sing and laugh,
A streak of hope yet rings true -
"A crest will surely follow this trough..."
We write in crimson, "I love you"
And look at tomorrow with hope in our eyes -
For triumph of values and reason sublime.
As waves in the sea rise, fall and again rise,
Things have a way of changing with time.
Be they however precious and dear,
Moments, articles, emotions too -
Nothing remains, nothing is forever.
Only change is constant, change is true.