A reader once wrote to the author Niko Zinovii, after the person had read a number of Mr. Zinovii's works, to comment on the short story, "The Mind of Juda," as well as express thoughts on the author's writing:
Niko, I don't know what to tell you. You are a great science fiction writer - in the best tradition. You tie together philosophy and existentialism. Your discipline and ability in writing prose have exceeded the herd, by far and your style places you in the category with James, and Kipling and other greats. Perhaps my saying this is lost on you. You don't know why I put the two together. James was the ultimate craftsman but his extreme intellectualism left far too many of even his gifted readers out in the mud. Kipling was the opposite - the ultimate lyricist, guided at every step by his "daemon" - he even claimed he never did any writing himself. I think we have all known that feeling but not quite in such extreme. Here, in this story, you manage to balance the two - lyricism and craftsmanship - and to encapsulate them in the context of the question: wherein does identity reside - or does identity even exist?
This is the question that drove the development of artificial intelligence in the latter half of the 20th century. Hofstaedter's book Goedel, Escher, Bach examines this very question in nothing less than 500 hard pages. If he could have I think perhaps he would have liked to use your story as the preface to this book. It focuses so sharply on the question. This question was also the central theme of Kipling's only novel Kim. And I have heard from people who might know that it is the question that keeps the Dalai Lama awake at night.
Poor Niko. Now you know what it is to have produced something original and singular in the world and you also know that the world at large isn't even aware of it and probably never will be. With that comes the realization that there is not all that much value in seeking recognition. With that realization comes the title of artist.
"The Mind of Juda"
A tale that touches upon the philosophical question of identity, and how this question may deepen in a future of sufficiently advanced technology.
"The Mind of Juda" is a story featured in the book:
Day of the Women