Home » Movies » ‘Never Let Me Go’, Never Let Compassion Go

NLMG speaks of a world that creates clones for the rich, who conveniently never see their clones. The clones are carefully brought up in a strict boarding school, which concocts horrible stories of the world out there, so as to keep the students contented and confined, till the day their organs need to be harvested… one by one. This seems similar to how captive animals are already being helplessly abused, albeit done more ‘humanely’ in the story.

In this way, the clones are conditioned to believe that what they are doing is noble – taking good care of themselves and being ‘well’ taken care of. But is this really so? It would be ethical, alright, if and only if every clone is allowed to experience the real world, and to decide if he or she wishes to be a willing donor out of free will.

Otherwise, being tagged, bred, trained and systematically deluded would be a form of exploitation – even when, and especially when a clone happily accepts his or her mapped out ‘destiny’ foolishly, without second thoughts. To live well for another is definitely noble, but if this intention is ill-informed, how truly noble or sincere can it be?

In the story, artworks by the clones are used to determine if they have ‘souls’. Now who says art is useless if it can save lives? Creativity, in all its forms, and the ability to appreciate it is surely what makes us sentient, worthy of being seen as humans and deserving of human rights. Ironically, it is those who robotically imprison the clones who seem rigid and ‘less sentient’?

True love also offers a beacon of hope and salvation in NLMG. At least, for some time. Clones who can prove themselves to be in love are allowed to live extended lives, to defer the harvesting of their organs. Those who volunteer to lovingly care for other clones, especially the ‘semi-harvested’ ones are also allowed to defer. Sounds like karma at play here? The kinder you are to others, the kinder others are to you.

The truth is, all of us, be we non-clones, clones, cloners or clone-carers, can at best defer the time of our passing. And love in the mean time does make life more bearable, if not more unbearable when it is time to part from the beloved, when there is great attachment. And another greater truth is that there are no real clones, for we all come with our own unique karma, and create fresh karma, even if our karma seems closely related to others’ karma.

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