Friday, October 19, 2012

Spirit of Achievement and Star Trek



I have a motto, a little more than a motto, it’s more of a belief in the indomitable spirit of man, and it goes like this:  “Most people are wrong about most things most of the time.”  This may sound a bit on the negative side but when you think deeply about the premise you must logically accept its truth.  In any vocation, science, or belief most people really don’t have a clue.  Even those at the top of their game have only really scratched the surface of the eternal understanding available.
 
Take medicine as an example, sure we think we know a lot but it reminds me of a scene in The Star Trek Movie, The Voyage Home, where Doctor McCoy is in an hospital hallway with a few of his comrades and laying in a bed, waiting for dialysis, or  something similar, is an old lady.  The Doctor asked her what was wrong.  I can’t remember the exact words but he gives her a pill and grumbled about the barbarity of the 20th century.  I guess it’s similar to the way we look at our past and the inane and mindless belief of past generations. We know now that they were wrong, about almost everything.  The question is, do we have much more understanding than they?  We do have more knowledge but do we have more understanding?  Of the available knowledge on any given topic, if we were able to tap into the complete resource of that topic and compare it to our current level, where would we stand in retrospect, would we be closer to our ancient cousins or closer to the Gods?

I did say this was about the indomitable spirit of man and it is.  With all that we don’t know we continue to strive for perfection.  We continue to rise from the ashes of our failures and we never stop moving forward, regardless of the often overwhelming obstacles placed in our way.  That is the spirit of hope, that is the drive of mankind, given to all of us at birth, a drive toward the perfect even when we have only brief glimpses, shadows of thought, of what constitutes perfection.