02-05-09

Star Trek

"To boldly go where no man has ever gone before." G. Roddenberry, Star Trek, anywhere.


Never cared too much for most of this series. Among my many weaknesses there is a certain immunity to being radically 'into' anything. Still, that line & the general gist of it mean a lot to me and should mean a lot to you. No not because of nostalgia, a passing infatuation with camp or because one has to dig at least what was popular - none of that. It has to mean a lot because it means a lot: because it's universal 'to boldly go where no man has ever gone before'. So universal it wouldn't make sense to think of intelligent creatures that wouldn't want to go there (which does not mean, alas, that all creatures are intelligent - all us humans are not intelligent, most of the time).

That's what I'm doing here: going where no man has gone before. Not trying to do - doing! No idea if I will wind up in places of any relevance whatsoever. Nor am I very sure that at least the ride itself is very enjoyable (or whether there is anybody on it at all). More, I'm going boldly because doing it prudently is just to keep within this, ot that, known territory; and for all one knows, that territory might as well be prison ('God'-prison, 'being responsible'-prison, 'hard work'-prison, 'listen to your experts'-prison, ...).

The spirit of Star Trek is the truely human spirit (and yes! - Lt Uhura & Chekhov are beasts in bed), the human spirit as it should be. And every single time I have heard the above line I have felt (albeit I have no appetite for travel & less so for even this most convenient space travel) that it was enough. Without any of us physically going anywhere we can be everyhwere (-Q!-).

It seems like the mediocrest of points one can on a corny piece of pop culture but it really isn't. It's the meaning of life, Jim, but not as we know it. We've succumbed, or all but succumbed, to the neurotic interpretation of meaning as a fixed point, that is to be discovered and henceforward used as steadfast anchor point. We're so far into this obsessive-compulsive behaviour in this 21st century that it's hard to see how we would ever be able to cut loose from the 'religious prison renamed compliance' in an as short stretch of time as is left between us and the 24th century. But precisely this mediocre point is the mental virus that will save us from our pet-genes of pettiness: it is a well known point, it is well understood, across cultures. Going boldly is fun, it's good for those coming after you, it is respectful to those that have gone before you, and it will only succeed by trying to communicate.

And on an unimportant side note: it has relevance for philisophy and for language - I don't know a clearer statement of Davidson's saying on conceptual schemes than Star Trek. I don't know a better illustration of far-reaching cultural relativity in some loose sense and the universal primacy of needing-to-understand in the strictest of senses.

Also, it always, in my memory at least, has ended well as it cannot but end well with us because there is, rationally, only the possibility for long term improvement. Such tastes as well the victory over the pessimism that is a necessary by-product of some strong & strict (neurotic) belief in cultural relativism - good to have a strong dose of psychosis once in a while, the short term being as it is rather miserabilistic.


Whilst writing this I was listening to Schoenberg (Chamber Symphony 1) & Brahms, (Piano Quartet 1), Simon Rattle: City of Birmingham Orchestra

12:31 Gepost door Guido Nius in Muziek | Permalink | Commentaren (0) | Tags: optimism, boldness, pop culture, universals, tones |  Facebook |

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