Wed 6 Dec 2006
The concept of the Aleph as conceived by Borges seems to represent the incommunicability of what is real and essential. The Aleph of the story contains all knowledge in the universe, but this knowledge cannot be given or communicated, which may be viewed as a metaphor for the fact that reality can only be perceived subjectively, and even if one were to be omniscient his or her consciousness would be confined to his or her own mind and his or her knowledge would, in the end, be lost to time with that consciousness. What is especially interesting is that at the end of the story, the author, despite having seen the Aleph, begins to forget what he has seen, and he links this loss of memory to the loss of his mental image of Beatriz, a woman he once loved who is now dead. This woman was his reality just as much as anything he saw in the Aleph, and it is this loss of an individual perception of a single person he fears more than anything.