Opportunity: Powered by Curiosity


Section 037

Journey Log #1


After reading Reflecting, an excerpt from Habits of the Creative Mind, it is evident that curiosity plays a role in the decisions made by Neo, in The Matrix, and Alice, in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

In The Matrix, Neo’s curiosity doesn’t begin to stir when he is given the choice between the two pills but rather when he discovers that the world is a government-ran-computer-operated illusion. It is this illusion that Neo can’t fully wrap his head around and has him begging for more; his curiosity begins to grow stronger and stronger. When Neo finally meets Morpheus, the man who believes that Neo is “The One”, he is presented with the choice; take the blue pill and wake up at home, or take the red pill and finally be able to see the truth he’s been longing for. Like many of us, Neo lets curiosity get the best of him and chooses the red pill, the pill that allows him to see the truth that he has only been able to get a glimpse of. (SparkNotes) The ideas of Kairos and Metanoia come into play in Neo’s decision making as well. As discussed in class, Kairos represents opportunity while Metanoia represents the regret of missing the opportunity presented to you. Kairos is pictured with a long forelock in which you may grab at the time that an opportunity is present; if the opportunity passes, you will be disappointed to see the ungraspable bald head of Kairos, leaving you with the remorse depicted in Metanoia. In The Matrix, Neo taking the red pill and moving on with his quest resembles Kairos while if he were to take his other option, he would wake up in his bed with the remorse of Metanoia. Since I had never seen The Matrix, I chose to use spark notes to get a deeper understanding of Neo and find out what lead him to his life-altering decision. This source provided me with information that allowed me to better understand why Neo made the decision he did.

The Matrix and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland are tied together by more than the concepts of “wonderland” and “the rabbit hole”. Although these two concepts are what ultimately tie these two together, they’re more than just a reference, the represent both Neo’s and Alice’s loss of innocence. (geocities¬) Both Neo and Alice enter worlds that prior to knowing of their existence, they could’ve never have imagined them. Throughout their journeys they’re faced with obstacles in which they must overcome, and decisions in which they have one chance to make. I believe that it is these challenges they face, that develop them into complex characters that discover an unimaginable reality that ultimately takes away their innocence. Just like how Neo had seized the opportunity to take the red pill, Alice chooses to go down the rabbit hole, thus bringing Kairos and Metanoia back into the picture. Although we may not know what would’ve happened if Alice didn’t follow that white rabbit, we can imagine that she may have felt regretful; her curiosity would’ve eaten at her with an unsatisfiable hunger. When looking for information on this topic I wanted a source that could give me more detail on what tied these two stories together. The source listed above provided me with the comparison of Neo and Alice and how both of their adventures developed them. It helped me convey my belief that the reference of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland was meant to be more than just a familiar phrase.

I mentioned earlier how just like Neo, we too get caught up in our curiosity and let it get the best of us. One of the things that I don’t see depicted in Kairos and Metanoia is the regret you may experience once you have taken the opportunity that was present for a brief moment. Metanoia represents the regret of not taking the opportunity; Kairos gets away. Although this picture holds true to many situations, I would like to see one that represents the failure that may come after taking an opportunity. The failure I am talking about may not even be considered a failure by some people, instead they may see it as seizing the wrong opportunity. Recently I have encountered this feeling in which your mind feels like it’s playing tug of war with itself. My sister graduated from college in May and on the same weekend I had a music festival in which I had the opportunity to play lead alto saxophonist with my jazz band. Instead of attending my sister’s graduation ceremony, I chose to participate in the music festival. Although it was a great experience I regret missing out on such an important moment in my sister’s life. If the Kairos and Metanoia concept says you feel remorse when you don’t seize an opportunity, then why am I still regretful? For me this question remains unanswered. Luckily she’ll be graduating again in May for her masters but for those people who have been in this situation and not given I second chance, it is for them that I so desperately strive for an answer.

Works Cited

"Literary and Allusions and Symbolism of THE MATRIX." Literary and Allusions and Symbolism of THE MATRIX. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Jan. 2017.

SparkNotes Editors. “SparkNote on The Matrix Trilogy.” SparkNotes.com. SparkNotes LLC. 2004. Web. 21 Jan. 2017

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