Starlog 9: Star Trek and Vulcan Philosophy

Check out this post if you haven’t read about the Star Trek course I’m taking yet!

Are we getting closer to realizing the Vulcan philosophy of IDIC (Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations) here on Earth? What would it take for that to happen? What would it look like? How might things be different?

There’s no doubt that we’ve come a long way when it comes to equality and diversity, and there’s even less doubt for me that Star Trek had at least something to do with that. For those who might not be exposed to any kind of diversity in their real lives, the show was a shining example of it. Characters of all backgrounds, from this world and others, were able to come together.

That’s not to say it was completely perfect. Looking back on almost any older show is a trip back in time. My husband turned on The Jetsons last week. Oh, here’s a nice piece of wholesome entertainment, right? Well, except that George Jetson was so infatuated with a hot woman on TV that he sent his son away so he could turn her into a hologram and get a better look. It was…weird.

Overall, I think this serves to prove that we can’t perfect this overnight. We can’t simply decide that things should be different and then expect a complete paradigm shift. I do, however, feel that we’re making progress.

I don’t always appreciate social media, but it’s certainly a good platform for exploring the gifts, talents, and diversity of various people. YouTube, Facebook, and others give us the chance to peek into each other’s lives a little bit more than we might otherwise. I do think this gives us a new appreciation for those across the street, across the country, or across the world.

More attention is being paid to true equality for all, whether we’re talking about real estate, healthcare, food, or pay. It’s a delicate thing, and there’s plenty of room for improvement, but I know I’ve seen a change even within my lifetime already. Gay marriage, reproductive rights, true equality for races…it’s all out in the public forum now, which gives it a chance to change.

If we could truly achieve IDIC, I think it would create a world of unlimited possibilities. We would no longer wonder if an idea was good because of who it came from (consciously or subconsciously). We’d take people for their actual value, regardless of what they look like or where they’re from. It would be pretty incredible, but I’m not sure that we’ll ever truly achieve that.

Could we see more of a change if we were to make contact with creatures from another planet? Would we treat them as humans or as something other? It’s an intriguing question, and one that I certainly hope we’re capable of navigating it with care and consideration when we get to that point.

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keepingand The Graveside Detective.  Her short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

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