• James Shade

Science Fiction Infinity

“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…”

--introduction to the Star Wars saga


“To explore strange new worlds; to seek out new life and new civilizations…”

--excerpt from the Enterprise’s five-year mission (Star Trek)


“If the stars themselves were diamonds, they would not be as precious as

those who live among them.”

--Enlightened resident of Galaxy Prime


DISCIPLE

Master, you seem weary and yet....exhilarated.


HIGH LORD SHADE

Indeed, for I have traveled the cosmos and seen but a fraction of the primordial beauty that lies therein.


DISCIPLE

Is it not dangerous out there?


HIGH LORD SHADE Exceedingly. But also inspiring.


DISCIPLE

How do you mean?


HIGH LORD SHADE

The universe is a mystery to all but the most omnipotent of beings. Its very vastness conceals the truths of our existence and hides many unknowns. It humbles us and drives us on to learn more about ourselves and our place in the infinity of it all.


DISCIPLE

But how can we discover all of these secrets?


HIGH LORD SHADE

We cannot. At least not in the briefness of our mortal lives. Perhaps in the fullness of human evolution we will discover the answers and more.


DISCIPLE

That is a long time, master. We are yet but a young race, relative to the age of the universe.


HIGH LORD SHADE You are correct, young one. For now, all we can do is theorize, experiment and revise our philosophy.


DISCIPLE

An epic task, my master. The scale of it is unfathomable.


HIGH LORD SHADE

Only to those with small imaginations.


DISCIPLE

How can daydreams help?


HIGH LORD SHADE

They give us direction. They help us to fill the voids within our information and discoveries.


DISCIPLE

But they are falsehoods!


HIGH LORD SHADE Not necessarily. Without concrete data, they may be just as true as anything else. For now, it is impossible to prove that something doesn’t exist.


DISCIPLE

Ah, I see. So if I were to say that the galaxy was filled with many sentient beings of varying species and varying ideologies, no one could prove me wrong. But what would be the point of that?


HIGH LORD SHADE It gives us a direction, and an assumption to go by when making our cosmic inquiries.


DISCIPLE

And from those conclusions we could expand our thinking into new areas and new theories.


HIGH LORD SHADE Exactly. But that information need not only be used for scientific discoveries. Many of those with a creative talent prefer to utilize these assumptions to craft masterful stories to entertain with. Loosely, we refer to this genre as science fiction.


DISCIPLE

Yes, I have heard of this. But it sounds as if there are many interpretations.


HIGH LORD SHADE

Correct. Some lean more towards the technical aspect of the genre, focusing on physics and hard facts, while others tend to be more fanciful, creating characters and locales that are totally alien to our way of life.


DISCIPLE

Truly one could describe planets, stars and species that we have not even discovered yet. Yes, I believe I would enjoy imagining my travels throughout the galaxies, seeing things I have never seen and experiencing new ways of life outside this simplistic reality.


HIGH LORD SHADE

Do not be impudent! Should the universe turn out to be consistent, life in every corner of it may turn out to be the same.


DISCIPLE

I should hope not!


HIGH LORD SHADE

Then create your own science fiction reality and work towards that. No need to rely on others. Too often we become cynical about the vision of others, thinking it too unreal or beyond the scope of mankind. There is no such thing.


DISCIPLE

I suppose...


HIGH LORD SHADE

Indeed, some science fiction chooses never to leave this planet, and yet it still offers a startling and thrilling view of our future.


DISCIPLE

At times our future seems very dark indeed...


HIGH LORD SHADE

And that is why many choose to tell their stories with a moralistic view, to give us something to aim for inwardly as well as outwardly.


DISCIPLE

These storytellers are truly forward thinkers!


HIGH LORD SHADE

Very much so. In fact, many of the science fiction imaginings of the past have now become scientific realities, especially in the realm of technology.


DISCIPLE

So it can happen! We can imagine and work towards the future of our choosing!


HIGH LORD SHADE

You learn very quickly, my disciple. Now go forth and study this science fiction. Find the future you wish for our civilization to achieve!