Monday, August 16, 2010

Secret Star Trek: A Really Bad 21st Century

One of the many alien "Gods" from Star Trek

 Summer is the time when my brain goes into standby mode. Actually, that's not true, it's actually the time when I delve back into a particular pop culture obsession and follow different themes in and out of paranormal lore and history.

I could best describe what I'm trying to do here as a kind of depth analysis of certain parts of the Collective Unconscious, namely those parts that seem to resonate outside of their boundaries. I've been back on Star Trek quite a bit, particularly the Roddenberry-era stuff. Not only because that's the stuff that resonated most strongly with the public, but also because it's also the damned weirdest stuff. 

Of course, it's hard when the news headlines resemble ones you might see in Knowing or The Seventh Sign. But it actually all kind of ties together, or should, according to my general thesis. 

Because at the core of Star Trek mythology is a really, really bad 21st Century. So bad that it forced humankind to put aside the greed and the power games forever (with the help of the aliens, of course). Roddenberry was probably a bit too optimistic on what would replace all of that, and the militarism of his successors (especially Ron Moore, whose military background speaks a lot to his subsequent work in sci-fi) is probably a little closer to the mark, though I certainly hope otherwise. 

All of this escapism- comics, sci-fi, etc - is a balm for sensitives, on both sides of the screen. Like paranoid schizophrenics, sensitives tend to exaggerate threats but they also perceive changes coming down the pike before anyone else. Some sensitives are born that way, some become so because of drugs or environmental factors and some become so because of life-changing trauma. Gene Roddenberry lived through a lot, including two horrific plane crashes, the second of which occurred in the deserts of Syria (read: 'Sirius'). 

Roddenberry was a prolific self-medicator, par for the course for a sensitive. He also wanted us all to believe he was a sensible type and not a sensitive type, with his flibbledy-floo about humanism and reductionism and rationalism and all the rest of the stuff that people who don't create anything near the level of a Star Trek tend to believe in. 

And here is where we get to the resonance thing. What Roddenberry created has obviously tapped into something, given that it's still going strong 44 years later. And I can still feel a power in those first two seasons of Trek that hit me so damn hard as a kid, something I can only describe as magical. But maybe a magic that can one day become a science- a science of the Unconscious. And more besides.

Now, I'm painfully aware that a lot of Trekkers (though not all) might see this all as insanity. It still shocks me how many sci-fi geeks subscribe to the most blinkered kind of reductionism you can imagine, and do so with the intensity of a Dark Ages monk. 

While I'm cross-referencing the alien abduction narratives allegorized in an episode like Empath, hardcore Trekkers are drawing up blueprints of the EPS conduits in the warp core in the latest home CAD program. 

 There are a number of thrulines with the stories Gene either wrote or chose to produce, and the more I think about them, the weirder they seem. Suffice it to say that Gene's involvement with Lab9 was nothing even close to the aberration some biographers would have you believe. In fact, all of it was prefigured in Star Trek. 

So if the prophetic and psychic powers of the creative mind are essential to this blog, then I'm certainly doing more than stoking my nostalgia by following these astro-Gnostic thrulines in Star Trek. And since the 21st Century is doing its best to follow the ST script, it makes it even more compelling for me. 

Remember that 10 or 15 years or so a lot of people were predicting the 21st Century to be sunshine and apple pie for everyone, with 'Dow 30K' and the 'End of History', tra la la la la. Certainly First Contact and the DS9 arc Past Tense were going against the grain at the time.

And if Roddenberry's life-changing experiences did allow him to tap into that universal well - that
gnosis - that Jack Kirby did, then these themes that seemed so compelling to Roddenberry in the 60s taken on an added resonance. 

When you take into account recurring Trek themes like ancient astronauts, channeling and disembodied intelligences, and the fact that he found himself in the company of a very elite crowd that took those topics with the utmost seriousness, I can't help but think that there's something at the core of it that needs to be understood. Most especially since we are in such a disastrous state at this moment in time. 

 It all might seem so odd and irrelevant to some but for many, many reasons it's anything but for me. What's more, I can't seem to shake this idea that maybe all of this synchronicity stuff isn't just some cosmic happenstance, but a part of something tangible beyond our present reach but ultimately within our future grasp. 

And I can't help but thinking maybe a Philip K. Dick or a John Lilly - or even a Gene Roddenberry - might have insights a Jung or a Koestler did not. Sometimes I feel as if we've been pushed into some distinctly evolutionary juncture, that we've been remiss in our responsibilities and have been using the incredible tools at our disposal for ridiculous, trivial and self-destructive purposes. 

Everything going on right now seems almost staged, aside from all of the obvious hidden agendas and bad actors at play out there. But for many reasons that I hope I can explain in the future, I'm certain that there are other forces at work, ones that no one seems to understand right now. But maybe ones that a visionary or two may well have foreseen.