Swimming through the universe, one light-year at a time.

Swimming through the universe, one light-year at a time.
NCG 4631 "The Whale Galaxy"

Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Final Frontier

I just finished watching the latest Star Trek in theaters for the second time, and I am just as floored as I was after the first showing. There is something about this movie that strikes a very strong chord in me, and it is not just from being an astronomy and physics fan. While this theme is not unvisited, it does resonate loudly: sometimes, it is entirely necessary to renounce logic and embrace emotion.

I find this motif, while comforting, difficult to follow, precisely because of the adjunct it contains: sometimes. I am conflicted and unclear about when to stick with my head and when to abandon it. And if I do, to what degree? I realize I have a sort of internalized sexism, where the idea of being a stereotypically emotion-driven female disgusts me to the point that I often strive to squelch that part of me. Somehow, I believe that if I am not as rational as males are perceived to be, I am inferior. I am inferior because I have a vagina and I incorporate pathos into my decision-making. I realize this is a severely flawed system of thought, but I cannot resolve it inside myself.

Another interesting concept of Star Trek: time-travel. Future Spock meets Past Spock. So, ignoring any paradoxes or physical impossibilities, if I were to travel back in time and could tell myself anything I wanted, what would I say?

My answer would have to be: nothing. Absolutely nothing. I would stand back and watch the past me make all the same mistakes, say and do all the wrong things, and feel the all the same emotions. Because it's not about who I could've been or what I should've done, it's about how I got there. I do not believe in fate, I believe in the way of travel.

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

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