Star Trek: The ReGenesis of Gus Grissom

“I grew up on Star Trek. I believe in the final frontier.”- Barackobamun

Just about this time last year I was looking at the strange semiotic links between Star Trek and a young, up and coming politician who had just secured the Democratic nomination for President. Earlier this year I also looked at the new President's near-ritualistic symbolic connections to a dead astronaut, whom some see as a martyr in the struggle for the soul of the US space program (which was largely the pet project of a strange collection of Nazis and Freemasons at the time).

So here we are in June '09- the new Star Trek film is a blockbuster at the box office and the new President is seen as a near-messiah figure by a significant proportion of the world's population. His opposition is in shambles and he seems poised on remaking the American economy in his image (and he made his first visit as President to NYC during a rare solar alignment).

So, I thought I'd just take a look at an earlier Star Trek film, which also had some very interesting references to that martyred astronaut, as well as to the symbolic Ur-narrative that seems to becoming more and more central to our culture these days (like in the new Star Trek, for instance).




Star Trek III: The Search for Spock opens with the death of Spock during the battle with Khan (from Star Trek II), the time-traveling supersoldier who ruled the Earth following the Eugenics Wars. Spock dies aboard a spacecraft, as did Gus Grissom.

We then see Spock's coffin torpedoed to the surface of the Genesis Planet, which was terraformed using radical technology develop by Kirk's son, David Marcus (played by the late Merritt Buttrick, who also played "Johnny Slash" opposite Sarah Jessica Parker on the 80s cringefest Square Pegs- Buttrick died 3/17/89 from AIDS complications.).



We also see a new Starfleet Commander, played by Robert Hooks. This being post-Lab9 Trek, the Starfleet Commander is essentially the de facto leader of the Federation as well. Interesting conjunction with all of the Gus Grissom symbolism we're about to be hammered with.

Here, the Commander forbids the crew to discuss their "knowledge of Genesis." Interesting.




Well, who's flying off to gain further "knowledge" of "Genesis?" Why, none other than the USS Grissom! The Grissom's registry is NCC-638, and a quick bit of addition there should help clarify its purpose in the story.



Marcus and Lt. Saavik (played by Scientologist Kirstie Alley in Star Trek II) detect signs of life on "Genesis" and beam down from the Grissom to investigate. There they find the reborn Spock, reborn with the technomagic of Marcus' Genesis Project. While on the planet, the Grissom is destroyed. However, Saavik refers to the Grissom without the article, as we hear several times throughout the story. Throughout the various Star Treks, ship names are almost always preceded by "the."

Really interesting.



I love these kinds of juxtapositions- is our dying/rising astronaut Spock a stand-in for someone else here?



Here the Klingons interogate the Grissom's survivors about the Genesis project, which we discover is a failure, fashioned by an imperfect creator who would see himself as a god. Anyone with a passing familiarity with Gnosticism should be hearing bells and whistles going off...
"The lowest emanation was an evil god (the demiurge) who created the material world as a prison for the divine sparks that dwell in human bodies. The Gnostics identified this evil creator with the God of the Old Testament, and saw the Adam/Eve and the ministry of Jesus as attempts to liberate humanity from his dominion, by imparting divine secret wisdom. Gnostics like Christians take an allegorical view of the Old Testament."

"Overview of Gnosticism" by Lewis Loflin
What's that, you say? Pure conjecture? Oh, you're probably right. But get a load of what Saavik blurts out a moment later...



...she has no knowledge. Ahh, but she has; Marcus, the creator of Genesis, told her all about it. As his Garden of Eden goes up in flames, Marcus sacrifices himself to save Spock and Saavik, our Vulcan Adam and Eve. Remember that some Gnostic sects taught that the Serpent was actually Christ, sent by the Monad to grant Adam and Eve the gnosis and free them from the Demiurge and the Archons.

How tragically fascinating then that the actor who portrayed Marcus died on the day of Osiris' death, given the similarities between Osiris and Christ (further uncovered in DM Murdock's new book).




After some obligatory fisticuffs between Bill Shatner and Christopher Lloyd (who would launch his own sci-fi franchise the next year), the Enterprise is destroyed and a Klingon Bird of Prey is hijacked and flown to Vulcan. Interesting red glow coming from the ship's stern there.

Then it's some heavy Vulcan ritual hoodoo in order to transfer Spock's katra from "the son of David" back to Spock. I wonder: is the katra anything like the Egyptian ka?



Maybe Spock's ritual cloak might hold a clue...


Hmmm, kind of reminds me of the ceremonial shafts in the Great Pyramid, through which the ka of the Pharaoh would be sent to Orion to spend eternity with Osiris, the lord of the afterlife and judge of the dead.



And what do you get with the ascension of the soul of Osiris to the afterlife? Why, the rising of Harpocrates, god of the dawn....

Speaking of which, this was Harve Bennett's post-Star Trek series, Time Trax ( Harve is heavily into the time travel concept, obviously). The portal there reminds me a bit of the Tardis, but that giant Eye is something else altogether...


Coindentally enough, Bennett was born on August 17th. His last project to date was Invasion America, an animated mini-series co-produced with Steven Spielberg. From the wiki:

.... humanoid aliens from the planet Tyrus begin to initiate their plans for making contact with Earth. Cale-Oosha, the ruler of Tyrus, looks into his uncle's project with Earth.

However, his uncle, The Dragit, claims that their dying planet ought to invade Earth and take hold of its resources. Cale refuses, and a civil war breaks out. Cale and Rafe, his bodyguard, trainer, and trusted friend, escape to Earth, disguising themselves as humans. Cale meets Rita Carter, a human woman; he falls in love with her, and they marry.

After a long time of running from the Dragit's forces on Earth, Cale returns to Tyrus to help strengthen his loyalist forces, the Ooshati, leaving Rita and their young son, David, under Rafe's protection. In the present day, when the Dragit finally finds the family, he is determined to kill them, and David Carter's teenage life is thrown into a devastating adventure of stopping the Dragit, losing and gaining friends, and finding out just who he is.

"Finding out just who you are" is the whole point of Gnosticism, and finding out you are actually an alien hybrid like David Carter is the whole point of Astro-Gnosticism. Fascinating to see some of those old Delta Cycle memes in this series. Interesting guy, that Harve Bennett...

Coincidentally, the voice actor playing Massachusetts-born Carter ("nine-point-nine, nine-point-nine") made a recent appearance on The Secret Sun...



PS For more on the deep Gnostic roots of Star Trek, click here.

18 comments:

  1. Today I viewed the new Star Trek movie. How easy it is to use time travel to make any plot plausable. Spent two years at Grissom AFB in Indiana in command control in SAC. Know thyself is Gnosticism? Syncromystic blogs make knowing oneself easier. We are all going into this learning spiral together. We get high with a little help from our friends. Dennis

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  2. Chris M Ferguson12:48 AM, June 01, 2009

    Another great article. Keep it up. Secret Sun is the only site I'm excited to go through on my feed reader.

    CMF

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  3. Hmmm. So the Demiurge is gay? No wonder Star Trek never managed an out and proud gay character.

    Anyway, I've watched this movie over and over, knowing full well that it represents a Gnostic view of the Creation story, and I never got the Grissom synch.

    I have a personal synch with this, because I "Killed" my old laptop with a glass of spilled red wine last year (actually, it was the dog that caused the spill) and I had to transfer all the data (katra) from the old computer to the new one and it was like the computer was Spock?

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  4. The Demiurge actually masturbates the world into existence in the Apocryphon of John. (Recalling the Egyptian Tum). It's easy to miss if you don't read the footnotes.

    I'm really glad you got around to covering Star Trek III, because this movie blows my mind. First, here's something from Alvin Boyd Kuhn:

    Khan is a watery tempest. Typhon, the abyss of primordial heaven, is identical with typhoon. So the Wrath of Khan is the wrath of Set/Typhon! Furthermore, the Genesis Planet is quite literally a sphere of generation, a familiar concept in both Platonism and Gnosticism, as related by G.R.S. Mead in Fragments of a Faith Forgotten:

    They believed that nothing which exists by generation can survive destruction, and thus the sphere of generation is also the fate-sphere. He then who knows nothing beyond this, is bound to the wheel of fate; but "he who is conversant with the compulsion of generation [saṁsāra], and the paths through which man has entered into the [generable] world," can proceed through and pass beyond (transcend) destruction. This destruction is the "Water" which is the "generation of men," and which is the element in which the hierarchies of generation hold their sway, and have their being. It is called water because it is of that colour, namely, the lower ether.The Shabaka Stone says that "Osiris had drowned in his water."

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  5. Thank you for the post on Star Trek. It is one of my favorite topics. I have 3 of the series on DVD, Next Gen, Voyager, Enterprise. Have watched ever episode. I like the original series to. Just ran out of funds when they released the remasters of Star Trek original series (1966-1969).

    You can see all 78 eposodes on Fancast: http://www.fancast.com/

    Oh...that brings a point to mind with the above statement from Obama...our saviour (just kidding).

    “I grew up on Star Trek. I believe in the final frontier.”- Barackobamun

    If that was true, which there is almost nothing I believe stated by this moron, but where did he grow up on "Star Trek". He was born in 1961. The series aired in 66-69 and Obama was in Indonesia.

    A little history: When Suharto, a military leader in Soetoro's home country, came to power in 1967, all Indonesian students studying abroad were recalled and the family moved to the island nation.[15] From ages six to ten, Obama attended local schools in Jakarta, including Besuki Public School and St. Francis of Assisi School.

    In 1971, he returned to Honolulu to live with his maternal grandparents, Madelyn and Stanley Armour Dunham, and attended Punahou School, a private college preparatory school, from the fifth grade until his graduation from high school in 1979.

    Ok I get it, they ran Star Trek in Indonesia in the sixties? Your kidding right? So then maybe he watched the reruns or just the newer series? With his "charmed slave like life" going to private schools & being groomed to be the "Reptilian Leader" he was bread to be. OK, I'm done venting now. lol

    Who cares anyway, just "more purfume on the pig" with our new Presidenta.

    -DarkStar888

    P.S. Great blog. You put a lot of work in to this. Take care.

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  6. Great post, Chris.

    I think that you are obviously onto something with this Gus Grissom symbolism.

    Fascinating.

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  7. Dennis- Two years at Grissom AFB? Tell us more!

    Chris- Awesome- thanks for reading!

    Michael- Well, originally their Horus resonator Lt Hawk (ST:FC) was gay, but that was played down in the movie. Not so in some of the ST books. The actor who played Marcus may have been gay- not sure about the character.

    Eleleth- Awesome find! Great links, too. Thank you!

    DarkStar- I'm sure Obama watched ST the same way I did- in reruns all throughout the 70s. Thanks for the kind words!

    Andre- Yeah, it's pretty weird. Take Eleleth's word for it- this movie is a trip.

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  8. (For some reason, line breaks in these posts aren't working the way they should—oh well.) With all of talk about how Masonic the Federation is, the Vulcans (or more approprately, "Tubal-Cains") clearly seem to evoke the idea of the "Secret Chiefs" or "society of the Elect" that secretly observe (and guide?) terrestrial secret societies. In fact, this seems to be the real story behind First Contact, which you have already covered to some extent—is this the end design of the "Great Work"? "Vulcan Logic" also recalls another familiar Platonic/Gnostic concept, the Logos (as well as the "Lost Word" of Masonry):

    "Now the impure womb, or sphere of generation, can only produce mortal men, but the virgin or pure womb, the Sphere of Light, can produce men immortal or gods. It is the descent of the Perfect Man or Logos into the pure man that alone can still the birth-pangs of the carnal man."

    "For these," writes one Gnostic text, "are the logic [That is, Sons of the Logos], living men only who pass through the third Gate."

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  9. Eleleth- There are so many layers to all of this, which is what makes Star Trek so fascinating. The NG films are bursting with subtext and allegory as well. The Vulcans in ST3 reminded me a lot of Tibetan Buddhists, with not a small amount of Bene Gesserit thrown in. But the Gnostic stuff has been in ST since the very beginning as I wrote about here.

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  10. Not alot to say about Grissom AFB. I do recall the Nasa people flying in in T-38 trainer jets, like they each had a jet to fly anywhere they wanted,treated like VIP's. Also I deployed to Greenland on a KC-135 to set up a command post there for a big exercise. I had the oppiortunity to tour a BMWS(ballistic missile warning site) up there. Now that was completely Sci-fi stuff. At Grissom I was a command control expert. An airman with the duties to pass on emergency war orders/flight paths for kc-135 tankers and FB-111 bombers. There was many interesting machines in the command post, one a SLFCS, a machine that picked up messages transmitted thru the earth. And the for, a machine that was the ancestor of the internet, I could transmit and receive messages instantly with any other SAC base in the world. The computer part of it ran on tapes. The command post had a two man policy. Both controllers(myself and an officer) wore a 38 caliber as a precaution against premature launch of nuclear weapons. You could say I had my hand on the trigger. That is some of the Grissom story from me. Shine forth brave souls. Dennis

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  11. Typo alert, and the for, should read, And the SACCS machine, the ancestor of the internet.

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  12. That pagan idea of emanation, linked in the Demiurge article, is like prime numbers.

    everything is so layered, there is much "water" to ascend

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  13. And the identification of the master-builder Vulcans with Tibetans accords perfectly well with Blavatsky and the Theosophists calling these Secret Chiefs the "Tibetan Masters".

    It's always been particularly strange that while Earth seems to have essentially embraced scientific materialism, this is far from normal in the Trek universe. The Vulcans and Klingons, for instance, both hold the most elaborate religious beliefs, and these civilizations are assumed to be many centuries more advanced from that of Earth. Not only that, but these beliefs are shown to be perfectly real, as shown in STIII; and B'Elanna even visits the Klingon underworld in an episode of Voyager! And of course, it's the entire plot of DS9.

    Perhaps there is an analogue in the current exoteric promotion of science and technology in the public sphere, while the esoteric subtext says something else entirely.

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  14. Aside the Buddhist links with the Vulcans, I'd say the Metrons, the Talosians and the Prophets fit the Secret Chiefs bill quite nicely (probably a few others I'm forgetting at the moment). The Vulcans are a bit too aloof and not quite worried about being our guides for Blavatsky's description (who were Buddhas more than Buddhists).

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  15. I was wondering about your reference to the birth of Harve Bennett, on August 17th. Could you elaborate on that a bit? What is it about that date? August 17th is also my birthday.

    On a safari through the strange world of syncromystism, myself (tripping on common themes in my own life) I came upon the harmonic convergence and it's date 8/17, as well as it being part of "The Dog Days of August"...

    I wrote this short blog which is part of a larger article, in regards to my birthday:

    http://dogdaysofaugust.blogspot.com/

    So, if you could I'd love to hear about what you find interesting in the date August 17th.

    Thanks!

    Bianca Smith

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  17. Hey Chris - lovin' this, lots to chew on. :)

    One more bit from a Trekkie: there was also an 'Excelsior'-class USS 'Grissom', mentioned on TNG, then noted as destroyed on DS9, only 6 survivors. (DS9 Episode "Field of Fire")

    The 'Excelsiors' were often named for famous ships, and somehow it is unsurprising that this other Grissom ends up casualty - martyr? - as well.

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