Connecting Past Me and Future Me
This post, Setting my direction, started with an email from Past Me. Why was Past Me sending me an email?
When Past Past Past Me (or maybe Past Past Past Past Me) had been writing his Daily Pages, he had started to write about something that he called “Tolerable irrationality.”
If you asked me if I’m a rational person, I’d say “yes”—or maybe “mostly, yes”—and then get on with my life.
But I’m not.
I have irrationalities that I’ve learned to tolerate.
The other day I ran into two of them, of different kinds, and said:
But I’ve said that before.
He had said something like that before. He’d written about noticing irrational acts, and then “debugging” himself. He’d written Debugging and Programming AutoMike: Introduction , and Debugging and reconditioning myself, and More debugging, and Waking up, Day 30. And he kept forgetting.
He’d written about the forgetting, not once but many times. For example: Memento, Redux, and Memento.
How was he going to remember that which he kept forgetting?
When he’d been losing and having to discover his purpose and his direction for years, how could he maintain continuity?
It took him a few deaths and rebirths to focus on the problem sufficiently to invent a new approach.
His answer was: each night before he went to sleep, he’d send his future self an email. And so, last night, my Past Self did that.
And this morning, the email arrived.
A message from the past
Here’s how this morning’s email started:
Dear Future Me,
I send love and greetings from your past and love and hope for your future.
You’ve inherited sufficient material wealth to live a fairly free life. You’ve inherited loving friends and family. You’ve inherited a fit and healthy body. You’ve inherited a great deal of knowledge and information. I hope you’ll do something
productive with it, and leave more for your Future Self than you’ve inherited from your Past Selves.
Here are my hopes for you.
I am writing this email to you, one copy be delivered to you tomorrow morning at 5:30 AM and another at 9:00 PM
I hope is that you will read it as soon as you wake up.
It would be nice if you woke at 5:30 but if you don’t, that’s fine.
I continued with a set of instructions. I accomplished some things. Failed with others.
But I did make some progress.
And I did write a note to Future me, one copy to arrive at 5:30 AM and the other at 9:00 PM.
It’s novel, so it will work for a while.
How long will it go?
My predictive model says at least a week.
So as soon as I post this, I’m writing a note to Future Me. I’ll schedule it to arrive about a week from now. The note will remind him to read this post and let me know how it’s gone.
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