Thursday, 13 September 2012

War of the Prophets

"Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating? It is the exact opposite of the stupid hedonistic Utopias that the old reformers imagined. A world of fear and treachery and torment, a world of trampling and being trampled upon, a world which will grow not less but more merciless as it refines itself. Progress in our world will be progress toward more pain."
George Orwell, 1984

Space: The final frontier
These are the voyages of the Starship, Enterprise
Its 5 year mission
To explore strange new worlds
To seek out new life and new civilizations
To boldly go where no man has gone before
Gene Roddenberry, Star Trek

Two very talented gentlemen, both who have left a legend behind. Both stories tell of a future for mankind, or are they just stories? Looking at what was written and what is happening, it can be said that both of those stories can be looked on as road maps for humanities journey - one speaks of hopeless terror, the other of enlightenment and progress. Which map are we following?

1984 - a time when Wilson Smith wanders a very small and controlled piece of the world. Big brother is always watching, your neighbour is always watching you and you are always watching them. Humanity lives in terror of the government, yet the government is there, making life better for all. The masses live a life of drudgery, devoid of hope but still believing that there is something better to aspire to.

Today, I stepped out of my home and walked to work. On the walk I pass by 3 closed circuit TV's, someone watched me as I walk along the street. Also on my walk, I pass 2 homeless people, sleeping under a tree. They look at me and think "man, he has got it easy", I walk by to ensure whatever has inflicted them does not get to me. I get to my office and look at the news - my government has done something else that makes me fear for my future. I look further into the news and am told that more services that were available to me have been cut, but look, we are here, looking after your best interests. More news shows how someone has made the richest person in the world list. $600 million - what the hell does he do with all the money? Boy would it be nice to have even a small chunk of it. One day my life will be lived on easy street, I just got to keep moving forward.

Star Date 1312.4.  The starship Enterprise, crewed by a mixed bag of colours, sexes and different races, wanders through outer space. While armed with an impressive array of weaponry, the Enterprise is out there to expand the knowledge base of humanity. Captain Kirk jumps in his shuttle craft and lands on an unexplored planet. He looks around and touches his chest and speaks out to the air and a voice answers back to him. After exploring this new chunk of space rock, he gets back to his ship, presses a button on the wall and his lunch appears. After his lunch he wanders down to the doctor, complaining of a stomach ache. The doctor puts him on a bed and, hits a button and a display unit shows an infection in the Captains stomach.Doctor presses a small device to the Captains neck, a small hiss is heard and the Captain feels much better.

Today, I stepped out of my home and walked to work. On the walk, I pulled a small box out of my pocket, pressed a button and started to talk to the air and was answered. I got to my office and spent a short time looking at the news from around the world. I explored the internet a bit more and learned how to repair my dishwasher. Other news told me of the small robot we sent to Mars, what it had experienced, and what is added to the knowledge base of humanity. After reading the news, I went pressed a button on a machine and was given something to eat. A friend of mine called up and said that he had just gotten back from the hospital. The MRI had just been given showed that the tumour he had been fighting was finally gone. I am glad that my friend is feeling better.

Two men with two diametrically opposed views of the future, and yet both views appear to be equally valid at this point in humanities path.

We have a choice to make - what path will you promote?

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