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  • Myra Dubash

HUMANS-A STUDY

Iara was just walking home from a horrible day at work. Everything seemed to be going wrong. She spilled her coffee on her shirt and had to change into a disgusting scrap of clothing she bought from a roadside stall next to her office. Once she reached work, her boss yelled at her for being late and piled up 7 more reports on her desk to be finished by the weekend. As she turned the corner of her street, she saw a UFO flying overhead. It was normal now, in 2073 for aliens to land on earth to sort out treaties and interplanetary laws with the humans. But this was the 4th one this week and there were never more than 3.


This one also seemed smaller than the other ones she had seen. It came closer and closer and then suddenly she was beamed onto the ship. The sensation was odd. She felt her body getting compressed and bile crawled up her throat, threatening to spill from her screaming mouth. Eventually, the sensation died down and she leaned tiredly on the wall that appeared behind her. Just as she thought she would close her eyes for a second to regain her composure, a frantic alien rushes into the room and Iara is jerked awake. He seemed to be younger than the aliens she had seen when the president made the speech about the humans’ alliance with interstellar beings.


Just as she was about to ask why she was there, words rushed out of his mouth, “You have no idea how many rules I’m breaking right now but my Human Studies final is tomorrow and I need help.” Even though the alien was young, he was over 6 and a half feet tall and could definitely injure her if he tried. “Alright,” she said, “but I’m going to need a little bit of context.” Over the course of the next few hours the two introduced themselves and became quite close. The alien’s name was Xander but Iara had resorted to calling him Xan. He needed to write a paper about the ignorance of humans as they evolved. After overcoming the initial sting of insult, she realized what the topic really meant. Humans had evolved into an intelligent species and the transition from ape to what they are currently is a commendable one. However, people concentrate so much on certain aspects of their lives that they forget their roots. At a core level, humans have a connect with nature.


The discovery of fire and electricity and the phases of the moon were all progress towards developing the ultimate relationship with nature, a relationship that would empower the human race and allow it to harness power the way it is to be harnessed and use it for the betterment of the world. But sometimes, ignorance is bliss. Humans obtain more and more knowledge and it feeds their ego and they think they are supreme. Their inflated pride blocks out their acceptance and blinds them. They stray from the path they were destined to follow and make selfish choices that would only make their situation worse. They were made to befriend nature, they destroyed it. They were made to love and live in harmony, they hate and live in divides. They were made to be an intelligent species, they take advantage and harm others. But Xander thinks differently. He believed that, even though all of this is true, humans have a reason for their choices. And that is why he needs Iara. He will never understand emotion, for he has never felt it. He will not understand, for his species has evolved to eradicate emotion. He will only ever know logic.


And now, his logic defies him. Iara explains that it was not that we didn't know the harmfulness of our actions. We knew, it was just that our need for instant gratification overpowered it. We feel the longing and the want. we feel the sadness, the deep-cut despair, as a part of us, and every time we feel it, our need to distance ourselves from it increases. We want to prevent the feeling from ever coming back. And so, we are selfish. We do whatever we can for that one shot of dopamine, that one hit of the wonderous, addicting drug of happiness and we are selfish. We don't want to ruin the world, the wreckage is only a side effect of the humans’ quest for happiness.

And finally, Xander understands. With Iara’s help, he writes his paper and drops her back home. She even makes him promise to visit again. He goes back to his home planet and submits his final. He gets an ‘A’.

services towards the orphans today because, who knows, tomorrow your children may be looked after by people whom you inspire to care for the orphans today.



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