In the discussion thread: NASA rover closing in on Mars to hunt for life clues [View all]
Response to warrprayer (Reply #33)
Mon Jul 30, 2012, 11:43 AM
Peace Patriot (24,010 posts)
36. Go deeper! Are you not responding to "the Dream" born in the 1960s...
...in millions and millions of brains--a dream that only a few had dreamt before but that quite suddenly, it seems, "went viral"--that humankind could create its own future of social justice, equitable wealth, compassion and high scientific and intellectual and artistic achievement in which all of us, without exception, can participate?
NASA was part of that Dream. It is quite wrong to say that NASA and especially its program of putting men on the moon was created to defeat the Russian communists in space. That was the motive of the war profiteers for going along with it but it was NOT the motive of the engineers who pulled it off nor the motive of the millions of people who supported the effort and the billions who were inspired by it. CURIOSITY and WONDER were the REAL motives of those who did it and those who appreciated it as the most important event of the 20th century and perhaps of all time.
Suddenly, our viewpoint changed from an ant's point of view to the point of view of the great Cosmos, almost overnight. To compare it, say, to Europe's discovery of America, is the right idea but doesn't come near to grasping the magnitude of this human achievement of stepping off our own planet!--and furthermore, doing it as a collective effort! (The movie "Apollo 13" got that right!) (Many brilliant minds, putting their own egos aside, can solve insoluble problems by collective effort, that individuals cannot solve alone.)
We now could see the Earth as "one" and the necessity of including all of humankind in the social justice, equitable wealth, compassion and high achievement that millions were now dreaming of.
The bigger your Dream, the harder it is to see the "big picture," ironically. It is painful--so painful!--to see backsliding, to see war as a money sport return, to see the corruption of the rich and powerful get worse, far worse, to see democracy blockaded with items like corporate-run, 'TRADE SECRET' voting machines, to see youngsters imitating the incredibly ugly leaders who are inflicted upon us--trying to get rich with a gun and drugs, or just going blewy and shooting people at random (how different is the Colorado shooting from the war on Iraq?). The lack of leadership. The lack of vision. The moral decrepitude. The evil. The demoralization and disempowerment of a great people--a people who did that, who put men on the moon and, at the same time, determined to end poverty and racism.
Painful, painful, painful!
But, I'll tell you, that torch--the torch of "the Dream"--has passed to a new generation elsewhere--in the unlikeliest of places, given its history. Latin America.
That is the "big picture" that is hard to see. We in the U.S. are not alone on this planet and those of us touched by "the Dream" in the 1960s are not the only dreamers. U.S. democracy may go down--we may have lost the opportunity ourselves to advance humankind to its next giant steps--of both social justice and achievement. But humankind itself will never lose those dreams. They will be reborn again and again, in inconspicuous places, and seem suddenly to burst upon humankind to renew and refresh human society and move it forward along its inevitable progressive path.
Those of us who have dreamt of peace find war so intolerable that we are almost paralyzed with anger that our "Dream" has been so violated. Those of us who have dreamt of social justice and high human achievement find the current repeat of the crimes that brought on the Great Depression so intolerable that we can barely speak for our anger and don't know where to begin to undo it. (Begin with the 'TRADE SECRET' voting machines, is my advice!) Those of us who also perceive the catastrophe of global warming and its cause, industrial society, and see the suicidal failure of our country to address it--or even to admit it!--feel paroxysms of despair and rage. We can hardly believe the stupidity of our national discussions.
Why? Because we expect better of ourselves and our country. Why? Because we saw "the Dream" born here!--the dream of the best of humanity throughout the Ages, formulated in fits and starts, through many struggles and "dark nights" over many centuries, then blossoming, suddenly, here, for reasons unknown, in a new generation of Americans, the inheritors of the post WW II world. Widespread; shared by many--and quite unprecedented in that respect. We saw the world in a new way at the same time that our friends at Caltech and M.I.T. were putting a camera on the earth from the moon!
And if you were not born at the time--are too young to have lived through it--you certainly hear its echoes in the background of the current horrors.
The JFK, RFK and MLK assassinations and the Vietnam War ended that awakening of "the Dream" quite a few decades before Bush Jr. was inflicted upon us. But "the Dream" is alive and well in Latin America--just being born--and, if the truth were known, it is still alive here in places and among people whom the corporate news monsters quite deliberately ignore. Whether we can recover our democracy--and all our hopes and dreams--I do not know. It would be unusual as an historical precedent. Once a society goes in this bad, bad direction--of rule by the few for the profit of the few--swift decline is pretty much inevitable. But then, democracy--which is still alive here at least as an idea--is designed to do just that: to correct the wrong and disastrous courses of the rulers. (Thomas Jefferson said that we would need a revolution every twenty years--boy, was he right!) Given the mechanisms designed to defeat democracy here, it will be an uphill battle to restore it--but hey, if the Latin Americans can do it--given their history--so can we!
Don't despair! Go deeper!
"If a more intelligent life form has been watching what is going on here, they just may decide to stop our disease from spreading beyond our planet...".
That "more intelligent life form" is YOU. And the "disease" you speak of is something that YOU can help cure but NOT ALONE. And the glory of human life on Earth is that that collective "cure" is dreamable and therefore...maybe..we can never be sure...possible.
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Go deeper! Are you not responding to "the Dream" born in the 1960s...
|Peace Patriot||Jul 2012||#36|
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