Beyond the Imagination of the Earthbound

Did you watch Launch America? This weekend’s successful launch and docking of the Falcon 9 and Crew Dragon is the culmination of a lot of dreams-come-true. We’ve got a long way to go before commercial space travel will be available to everyone. But we will get there. What we will discover in space travel and exploration is beyond the imagination of the Earthbound. We cannot predict the new forces, powers, and discoveries that will be disclosed to us when we reach the other planets and set up new laboratories in space. They are as much beyond our vision today as fire or electricity would be beyond the imagination of a fish. –Arthur C. Clarke, “Space and the Spirit of Man” Or is it? Imagination Kindled The first known story about flying in space may have been the Hindu epic Ramayana (5th to 4th century BC). But most likely humans have dreamed of space travel since they first saw the moon and stars. There was a lot of dreaming before Soviet Cosmonaut Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin launched into space on April 12, 1961. To confine our attention to terrestrial matters would be to limit the human spirit. –Stephen Hawking And even more dreaming […]

Pearls of Wisdom From Science Fiction

No matter what we experience in life there is always someone who has shared a pearl of wisdom that we can apply. The same is true of our pandemic life today. Here are some pearls of wisdom from science fiction books and authors.  “Beware At war Or at peace, More people die Of unenlightened self-interest Than of any other disease” ― Octavia Butler Nobody dares to solve the problems-because the solution might contradict your philosophy, and for most people clinging to beliefs is more important than succeeding in the world. ― Michael Crichton, State of Fear The monsters don’t live in the belly of the world like they all say. The monsters live inside of us. We make the monsters. ― Kameron Hurley, The Stars are Legion  All governments suffer a recurring problem: Power attracts pathological personalities. It is not that power corrupts but that it is magnetic to the corruptible. ― Frank Herbert,Chapterhouse: Dune Arrogance and Conceit are the mother and father of a closed mind. ― Richard Nance, “Journey of the Chosen” Just as every villain imagines themselves a hero, few heroes see when they’ve become the villain. ― Nicholas Tana Fire is catching!” I am shouting now, determined he will not miss […]

You Don’t Have to Be Anne Frank

Entering the second month of social distancing seems like we’re all getting a little cranky. If you’re like me, you’ve put on a stiff upper lip and soldiered on. You limit your complaints to your frustration at not being able to go to the store or out to dinner. But you don’t admit to all the other emotions. Perhaps you have some idea of how someone in isolation should act. Perhaps, like me, you hold memories of Anne Frank up as a measuring stick for success. But you don’t have to be Anne Frank. Diary of A Young Girl I read the Diary of a Young Girl (AKA Diary of Anne Frank)  in high school and found it profoundly moving. A fourteen-year-old girl had to live in hiding for two years. She didn’t have a choice whether to hide or not. She didn’t have a prom or a graduation. And she didn’t have a choice with whom she hid. Cut off from friends and the life she knew, she documented her thoughts and dreams and frustrations in her diary. Where there’s hope, there’s life. It fills us with fresh courage and makes us strong again. Anne Frank was young, only […]