Year 3020. We sorted our shit out. Overcome Covid, systemic racism, climate change and all the other numerous serious issues that beset us in 2020.
Human live in near perfect symbiotic balance (true perfection or balance is impossible within a chaotic and beautifully complex universe) with nature, technology and self. We have perfectly blended our intimate knowledge and connection with non-humancentric reality, and aligned the quantum mechanical operational picture of reality with what was known at one point as Buddhist “truths” of interconnectivity and mutual arising.
“We have to hope for and envision something before agitating for it, rather than giving up, citing reality, and accepting the way things are.”
Why I’m No Longer Talking to What People About Race, Reni Eddo-Lodge, p183
It is now common knowledge that access and interaction with other living things is essential to human health. Therefore all BioSpaceships contain multiple Arboriums where passengers and crew members can experience Eco Therapeutics across all senses. The plants produce Phytoncide and numerous other beneficial substances, including of course the, in space, ever essential oxygen. The air is full of the scent of flowers. Clean tasting produce is grown. The sound of trickling water from irrigation systems. The feel of cool moss beneath the toe or hand. The curling, a-symmetrical, confusion of plants, offering a soft fascination of sight. Members volunteer to tend the gardens, immersing their hands in dirt, soil and earth, feeding their microbiome, exchanging cells with their environment.
“Nature is not out there in some distant and far away land. She is closer than we ever imagined, right inside us”
The Hidden Half of Nature, David R. Montgomery and Anne Bikle, p257
BioSpaceship _Mind Gym
The human brain has been recognised as a powerful, but at times faulty and dangerous, tool. Accordingly, space is provided for people to work on the management of that tool in whatever way benefits them most. Many different methods and technologies are available and meditation is a popular choice. No one expects the practise to always be easy or enjoyable, but as each person is taught that it is beneficial to themselves, and those around them, to keep their bodies clean, to learn to write, to clean their rooms and all the other monotonous tasks of living, keepings the lens through which every single experience passes clean is held to be a Good Idea. The bonus is, for many, meditation also offers moments, and for some hours, days or years, of ecstatic bliss.
“Time and time again, after I counted three or four breaths, my mind would wander, and then eventually I’d realise that I’d lost count”
Why Buddhism is True, Robert Wright, p24
When I was 15 I was almost overwhelmed by the realisation that nothing mattered at all, that I would die. I could not understand why I would endure the, at that time, earth shattering events of being weird at school, rejection by what I perceived as ‘cool’ people and the resulting LONELINESS.
So I went on anti-depressants for 6 months. I experienced a slight relief from the exhausting, never ending, inescapable, relentless confusion and pain of trying to deal with stuff. I was able to breath. I was able to see how my entire perception could be changed by a tini-tiny little white pill. I did not enjoy the other effects, I lost my lows, but I lost my highs. I finished my course, and have not needed them since. But in that breathing space I rested, and was able to be awake and calm enough to be in the room with other truths, like that I have support from my family, or strength in my body, or a bag of rainbow fizzy belts.
“Paradox as it may seem, we likewise find life meaningful only when we have seen that it is without purpose, and know the “mystery of the universe” only when we are convinced that we know nothing about it at all.”
Alan W. Watts
I began to proactively build a mind that would serve me better. I learnt more about how my brain worked, and how I could manage my highs and lows. I discovered meditation, I have learnt a little about psychoanalysis, I sleep more, I drink less. I have recently found learning more about Daoism and flow to be powerful. Metacognition in a lifelong project, an endless design task, or act of loving creativity. I believe a multifaceted approach is best, mirroring the modular composition of the mind. I gave up on waiting to be ‘done’ and accepted the ebb and flow of my moods as inevitable tides of life, mirroring nature’s seasons. As time went by I began to view my mind differently, and this view once gained is hard to forget.
“I have realized that the past and future are real illusions, that they exist in the present, which is what there is and all there is.”
Alan W. Watts
On a spaceship journey there is an end. On the other journey there is a piece of knowledge that offers a door to a place of infinity, which by definition could never be an end. It’s a door I think I might, perhaps, maybe, have begun to suspect that I might have glimpsed, but to be honest I’m not entirely SURE it exists. But the thing is… I kinda think it might… and if it does I DEFINITELY want to go there. It seems worth the gamble to try, because in trying you feel awesome anyway.
“Life exists only at this very moment, and at this moment it is infinite and eternal, for the present moment is infinitely small; before we can measure it, it has gone, and yet it exists forever….”
Alan W. Watts
Planet Z_One with the New World
I love science fiction, I love the idea that humanity will overcome our flaws, and travel through time and space to nurture new realities. I wholeheartedly believe the key to these optimistic dreams is first to fully embrace the concept of mutual interdependence on our planet, to emotionally connect with the concept of ‘Oneness’ beyond a statement or slogan.
Imagine a species of humanity that has achieved this, who has embraced our connection with our environment so fully that when we reach new homes we will change ourselves rather then that world. Rather then terraforming planets to meet our needs, we may choose to enviroform our bodies, brains and society to meld seamlessly with new habitats.
Planet Z_Sending ourselves forward
I will never step onto another planet, I will die long, long before this could ever be. But the dreams and information I contain, and the words, images or sounds I bring into being, theoretically could. We have the ability to store our ideas and share them with others across time and space. My brain is a composition of others thoughts and feelings, distilled into me in many formats. I am Aristotle, I am Rachel Carson, I am Alan Watts, I am Bjork. So perhaps one day a part contained within me will make it into a library on distant worlds. Here are 10 of the books that have shaped me:
- A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki
- The Pillowbook by Sei Shonagon
- Siddhartha’s Brain by James Kingsland
- The Player of Games by Ian M BanksWhy Buddhism is True by Richard Wright
- Holy Fire by Bruce Sterling
- Hardboiled Wonderland at the End of the World by Haruki Murakami
- The Nature Fix by Florence Williams
- The Three Body Problem by Liu Cixin
- Biocentrism by Bob Berman and Robert Lanza
- Why Buddhism is True by Robert Wright
I hope you have enjoyed this little spaceship journey mini series. Many of the ideas and designs are small pieces of much larger concepts that I have been dreaming and thinking about for years. I have recently been very inspired and energized by Doaist ideas of flow, of work as play. What can I pour my energy into now? What resources ARE available to me? What would be FUN to produce and share NOW rather than what SHOULD I do because of some fixed ego idea of a future path or desires?
If flow and work as play are something you are interested in, I really recommend listening to some lectures on the subject by Alan Watts. Also his voice is super soothing, perfect for those nights when your brain won’t switch off, when your worries crowd the room or wrap around your body in the dark. Sweet dreams everyone, I can’t wait to see what we can create.
“This is the real secret of life — to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.”